A polluted Belt Creek in Montana. Photo via AP.
A polluted Belt Creek in Montana. Photo via AP.

The new administration has not thus far been too shy about promoting a pro-pillage-the-earth-of-all-resources-until-everything-dies position. Today, the CDC, which (as of right now) considers climate change a public health issue, announced it would postpone a climate change summit scheduled for next month in Atlanta.


According to emails obtained by Climatewire, a trade publication, the summit was canceled shortly after Trump was elected, though there are potentially plans to reschedule; a keynote speaker, according to the report, would have been a political rival of Trump. Donald Trump, who has said climate change is a “hoax” and is an anti-vaxxer, will appoint the next head of the CDC, so we all have that to look forward to.

In an emailed statement, the CDC responded to the report:

On December 22, 2016, CDC began notifying registered participants that the Climate and Health Summit meeting originally scheduled for February 2017 had been postponed. We are exploring options to reschedule the meeting while considering budget priorities for fiscal year 2017, including the current continuing resolution, and potential overlap with an APHA conference on the same topic also being held later in 2017.


In other unnerving news, Axios’ Mike Allen, reporting on a leak of top executive order priorities for the Trump administration, writes that the EPA is set for an “absolute hammering” under Trump—no huge surprise, of course. Trump’s platform is rooted in the revival of the coal industry, despite certain economic realities, and his revised plan touts a totally made up thing called “clean coal,” claiming that “protecting clean air and clean water, conserving our natural habitats, and preserving our natural reserves and resources will remain a high priority.”

According to Axios, budget reduction ideas include $513 million in cuts to “states and tribal assistance grants” and $302 million in savings from climate and “environment programs.”

Included in the list of initiatives to stop are the Clean Air Act greenhouse gas regulations for coal and natural gas power plants, Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, which regulates the discharge of dredged or fill material into the waters and wetlands of the U.S., and TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load) for Chesapeake Bay, which the agency under Obama described as a “pollution diet” to restore clean water in the Chesapeake Bay.

The list also advocates “major reforms of the agency’s use of science and economics,” and if you would like a hint as to what the fuck that sentence means, look no further than the confirmation hearing of Trump’s EPA nominee Scott Pruitt, who continues to express doubt in climate science and was accused during the hearing by Sen. Jeff Merkley of using his Attorney General office “as a direct extension of an oil company rather than a direct extension of the public health of the people of Oklahoma.”


Meanwhile, the GOP recently paved the way to open federal land up for drilling, and the White House website has been purged of references to climate change. 2016 was, to reiterate, the hottest year on record.

Ellie is a freelance writer and former senior writer at Jezebel. She is pursuing a master's degree in science journalism at Columbia University in the fall.

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