After four years of retreat and stagnation under former President Donald Trump, a revitalized U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) now is once again taking action to address the climate crisis.
That task begins with getting out the facts about how severe the climate crisis has already become. Last week, the EPA updated its climate science scorecard for the first time in five years — a period which has seen five of the six hottest years on global record. Wildfires, heatwaves, and droughts have soared in numbers. The new EPA update shows in greater detail than in previous reports how all this is impacting the United States.
EPA Administrator Michael Regan told reporters that he wants to make clear to the entire country the dangers of rising temperatures in the United States. “We want to reach people in every corner of this country because there is no small town, big city or rural community that’s unaffected by the climate crisis,” Regan said. “Americans are seeing and feeling the impacts up close with increasing regularity.”
On Friday, veteran weatherman Al Roker of NBC’s TODAY Show broke down how useful the EPA’s revamped climate site is for ordinary people.
Information is key, but EPA actions last week did not stop there. The agency also acted to revoke a Trump Administration rule change which was designed to keep the EPA from considering the best scientific data in writing rules to address air pollution. “EPA has critical authority under the Clean Air Act to protect the public from harmful air pollution, among other threats to our health. Revoking this unnecessary and misguided rule” by the Trump Administration is “proof positive” of the Biden administration’s commitment to science, said Regan.
Finally last week, the Biden Administration approved a major offshore wind farm which had languished in regulatory limbo during the Trump years, the Vineyard Wind project in federal waters off the Massachusetts coast. LCV Senior Director of Government Affairs Matthew Davis commented, “We are thrilled to see the Biden-Harris administration approve the Vineyard Wind offshore wind project, continue to undo the former administration’s harmful environmental moves, and move along the construction of this overwhelmingly popular source of clean energy in New England. It is critical that the long-overdue Vineyard Wind project and all of this administration’s climate and clean energy proposals sustain and create good-paying union jobs in diverse communities across the country as we transition to a just and equitable clean energy future.”
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