The Environmental Protection Agency is going to offer some staff members buyouts in a move to reduce their numbers, Reuters reports, in an attempt to fall in line with President Donald Trump’s promise to thoroughly fuck environmental regulations and protections for the sake of his 2018 budget.
Reuters reports that the buyouts were detailed in a memo that was sent at the exact same time EPA head and close friend to the fossil fuel industry Scott Pruitt joined his boss to proudly announce that the United States was pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Acting Deputy Director Mike Flynn — different than the other Mike Flynn, just to clarify — said that the agency hoped to complete the buyouts by September, gutting what is an essential part of making sure we don’t ruin this goddamn planet more than we already have.
“Early outs and buy outs ... can help us realign our workforce to meet changing mission requirements and move toward new models of work,” the memo said. “The authority encourages voluntary separations and helps the Agency complete workforce restructuring with minimal disruption to the workforce.”
As Reuters tells it, staff at the EPA have been “on edge” since Trump blew into the White House, anxious about their jobs and the state of the agency and rightfully so: in March, Trump signed an executive order that essentially undid all former President Obama’s Clean Power Act, which would have swapped coal-powered plants with wind and solar farms.This was clearly a harbinger of the alarming state of affairs today: the United States under the Trump administration is a country that denies climate change and hires a man who thinks human activity has no impact on the climate.
In Trump’s precious and disastrous 2018 budget, the EPA takes the biggest hit, slashing its budget by 31 percent and eliminating over 3,200 of its 15,000 employees. The memo noted that the buyout plan still has to be approved by the White House Office of Management and Budget, but something tells me they won’t have any trouble pushing that through.