Trump on Earth
Tracking the latest environment-related shenanigans from Trump & his allies.
info_outline Can the environmental movement address American racism? 06/04/2020
Can the environmental movement address American racism? There’s a growing understanding that racial disparities in the U.S. extend beyond policing, to public health and the environment. Communities of color are more likely to , and be exposed to toxic chemicals. And now COVID-19 is disproportionately threatening these same communities Our guest is environmental justice leader Mustafa Santiago Ali. From 1993-2017, Ali served as Senior Advisor for Environmental Justice and Community Revitalization and Assistant Associate Administrator as a founding member of the EPA Office of Environmental Justice. But when the Trump administration proposed drastically cutting EPA’s budget and eliminating the Office of Environmental Justice, Ali resigned in protest. Now Ali is the VP of environmental justice at the National Wildlife Federation.
info_outline Can Joe Biden Convince Climate Voters He Is One of Them? 05/21/2020
Can Joe Biden Convince Climate Voters He Is One of Them? Joe Biden ran considerably to the right of his top rivals on climate policy. But now that he is the nominee, the Biden campaign is trying to convince climate activists that his campaign is taking the issue seriously.
info_outline Trump's Executive Order to Keep Meat Plants Open Could Be Risky. Here's Why. 05/06/2020
Trump's Executive Order to Keep Meat Plants Open Could Be Risky. Here's Why. President Trump ordered meat processing plants to stay open despite workers getting sick with the coronavirus. On this episode, Jacob Bunge, agriculture reporter for the Wall Street Journal, talks about the meat industry, worker safety, farmers' fears, euthanizing pigs and other issues with the food supply chain.
info_outline If it Ain't Broke What Are We Fixing, Exactly? 04/23/2020
If it Ain't Broke What Are We Fixing, Exactly? Last week the EPA announced a major change to a landmark regulation that has reduced toxic air pollution like mercury from coal-fired power plants. The vast majority of these plants have already complied with the rule. So why did the EPA roll it back now?
info_outline Coronavirus is like Climate Change on Steroids 04/09/2020
Coronavirus is like Climate Change on Steroids If you've been following climate change, the coronavirus pandemic might feel oddly familiar these days. Many countries have implemented radical policies that would have been unthinkable a few weeks ago to slow the spread of the virus. Is this what it will take to solve the climate crisis? On this episode, climate journalist Emily Atkin on the intersection of climate change and coronavirus.
info_outline How Dark Money Fuels Mistrust of Science 04/01/2020
How Dark Money Fuels Mistrust of Science How does doubt about science play out in a moment like we’re experiencing now where public health and millions of lives depend on good science and trusting scientists? Our guest is David Michaels, an epidemiologist and author of “The Triumph of Doubt: Dark Money and the Science of Deception.”
info_outline A Dark History 03/05/2020
A Dark History Yes, Trump has cozied up to oil companies. He’s said we should have taken the oil from Iraq. And it does seem like we are cozying up to petro-state strongmen in Russia and Saudi Arabia. But is this any different from how the United States and other western powers have operated over the last 150 years? Our guest is Matthieu Auzanneau, author of the book Oil, Power, and War which looks at the deep history of big oil’s influence over the affairs of the U.S. and other Western powers.
info_outline Trump Administration Ending Long-Standing Protections for Migratory Birds 02/20/2020
Trump Administration Ending Long-Standing Protections for Migratory Birds The Migratory Bird Treaty Act is the country's oldest conservation law. It protects more than 1,000 bird species. Now, it is being gutted by the Trump Administration and once again, industry is the winner. Our guest is Brad Bortner, one of 17 former directors and high-level appointees from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service who wrote a letter denouncing the move.
info_outline Is this Trump's Biggest Environmental Rollback? 01/23/2020
Is this Trump's Biggest Environmental Rollback? The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) is often called the Magna Carta of environmental law. President Nixon signed it into law 50 years ago this month. And President Trump honored the anniversary by announcing plans to drastically scale back the law.
info_outline Strengthening Transparency or Silencing Science? 12/12/2019
Strengthening Transparency or Silencing Science? The EPA is poised to finalize a rule that would require researchers to release their raw scientific data in order for their work to be considered when the EPA sets regulations. When the rule was first proposed, the agency received nearly 600,000 comments, the vast majority of them in opposition. One of those came from Dr. Mary Rice, a pulmonary & critical care doctor who also studies lung disease. Dr. Rice was one of 5 scientists to testify before the House Science Committee on the proposed rule.
info_outline What’s the Future of Global Climate Policies? 11/28/2019
What’s the Future of Global Climate Policies? The Paris Climate Agreement was put in place to prevent catastrophic and runaway global warming. And since taking office, President Trump has been threatening to pull the U.S. out of it. Earlier this month, he made it official.
info_outline One Man's Quest to Transform American Energy 11/08/2019
One Man's Quest to Transform American Energy The Trump administration has created policies to prop up coal and nuclear power plants to ensure the electricity grid is resilient and reliable. But the main character in a new book by Wall Street Journal energy reporter Russell Gold looks beyond fossil fuels to power the grid. The book focuses on one man's mission to get more renewable wind energy online, and a more thoughtful connection of the nation’s grids. The book is called Superpower.
info_outline Rick Perry Made Me Do It 10/17/2019
Rick Perry Made Me Do It President Trump says a key phone call at the center of the Ukraine scandal was Energy Secretary Rick Perry’s idea. But Perry asserts that in his conversations with Trump, “not once, as God as my witness, not once was a Biden name ever mentioned."
info_outline Who's Watching the Hogs? 10/09/2019
Who's Watching the Hogs? Last month, the USDA quietly issued a new rule changing meat inspection standards for pork. Not only would the new rule mean slaughter houses could run their processing lines as fast as they want, it would also change who does the inspecting, giving the pork producers themselves a bigger role in the process.
info_outline Trump and the Philosophy of Climate Denial 09/26/2019
Trump and the Philosophy of Climate Denial How do you change the minds of climate deniers and people -- say the President -- who doubt the scientific process in general? We ask a philosopher of science for some answers. Lee McIntyre has written books about defending science and fighting back against “alternative facts.” Now, he's out on the road talking to flat earth theorists and people who don’t accept current climate science.
info_outline We Watched All Seven Hours of the Climate Town Hall. Here's What You Should Know. 09/11/2019
We Watched All Seven Hours of the Climate Town Hall. Here's What You Should Know. Last time round, climate change got five minutes and 27 seconds of airtime in the debates. During this primary season, seven hours in one night alone. CNN provided each of the 10 candidates an opportunity to lay out their plan to deal with climate change. It was substantive. And it was long. On this episode we talk takeaways with Leah Stokes, a professor of environmental politics at the UC Santa Barbara. She read all the candidates' climate plans, watched all 7 hours, and has a lot to say about it all.
info_outline 'This is no longer about the science. This is somebody's ideology.' 08/30/2019
'This is no longer about the science. This is somebody's ideology.' A top climate scientist resigned from the Agriculture Department this month. Lewis Ziska says the USDA buried his research. He's one in a line of researchers who've left the federal government because they claim the administration is censoring climate science.
info_outline The Nuclear Dilemma 08/14/2019
The Nuclear Dilemma The nation's nuclear fleet is aging. What should we do about it? Our guest is Steve Clemmer, director of energy research and analysis for the non-profit Union of Concerned Scientists. In the age of climate change, Clemmer says he doesn't want the demise of this carbon-free power source. He wrote a report last year called, “the Nuclear Dilemma."
info_outline Fact Check: Trump’s Environmental Speech 07/19/2019
Fact Check: Trump’s Environmental Speech President Trump recently gave a speech at the White House touting his own environmental record. Even though he’s tried to rolled back environmental regulations at a record pace, he painted a picture of a country where economic growth has occurred as the environment has gotten cleaner. On this episode, we fact check the speech with Rebecca Leber of the Mother Jones.
info_outline So Long, Clean Power Plan. It Was Nice Knowing You. 06/27/2019
So Long, Clean Power Plan. It Was Nice Knowing You. It's here: President Trump's not-so-ambitious plan to deal with climate change. So now what? To help us understand what's in the new plan, we turn to Jody Freeman, founder of Harvard's environmental and energy law program. She served in the Obama White House as counselor for energy and climate change. She says that the plan will be challenged in court and we should pay attention to that fight.
info_outline Climate change's big question: Can we get to zero carbon? 05/05/2019
Climate change's big question: Can we get to zero carbon? Recent reports stress the urgency of reducing carbon emissions to check the worst effects of climate change. On this episode we listen in as some very knowledgable experts wade into the possibilities, obstacles and potential solutions.
info_outline That Time We Could Have Stopped Climate Change. . . 04/17/2019
That Time We Could Have Stopped Climate Change. . . Once upon a time politicians from both parties endorsed taking actions to avert what was by then understood to be an existential problem for humanity. So what happened? Our guest is Nathanial Rich, a writer at large for the New York Times magazine. He wrote about this history in the new book, Losing Earth.
info_outline An Explosion in Drilling on Public Lands Driven by 'Energy Dominance' 04/04/2019
An Explosion in Drilling on Public Lands Driven by 'Energy Dominance' Despite some recent setbacks, companies are still racing to drill on America's public land with the administration's blessing. And in one Southwest town, drilling has overwhelmed the agency tasked with protecting America’s lands.