Friday, September 17, 2021

Trump signs order to start unraveling Obama’s climate legacy

United States President Donald J. Trump looks for US Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke after signing an Energy Independence Executive Order at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Headquarters in Washington, DC, USA, on 28 March 2017. The order reverses the Obama-era climate change policies. EFE

Washington, Mar 28 (EFE).- President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed an executive order that starts to undo the environmental policies put in place by – and the legacy against climate change of – his predecessor, Barack Obama.

A key element in Trump’s executive order, signed at the Washington headquarters of the Environmental Protection Agency is that it eliminates the requirement that federal government agencies factor the impact on climate change into their planning

Trump’s directive also seeks to reverse Obama’s Clean Power Plan, launched in 2015, which gave states until 2030 to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from electricity by 32 percent, compared with 2005 levels.

In a brief speech before signing the order, Trump proclaimed the start of a “new era” in the production of energy in the US, the elimination of the government’s “crushing attack” on the coal industry and an end to “the theft of American prosperity.”

United States President Donald J. Trump departs after signing an Energy Independence Executive Order at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Headquarters in Washington, DC, USA, on 28 March 2017. The order reverses the Obama-era climate change policies. EFE

Trump declared a “new energy revolution” and an end to the “war on coal,” promising to cancel federal government regulations that are “killing jobs” and focus on national energy production.

The Trump administration says that the changes decreed on Tuesday are aimed as ensuring the country’s energy independence and, basically, creating jobs.

Accompanying Trump at the ceremony at the EPA was the head of that agency, a noted climate change skeptic, Scott Pruitt, Energy Secretary Rick Perry, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Vice President Mike Pence.

Also on hand were representatives, workers and miners from the coal industry, one of the sectors most affected by the government regulations imposed by Obama.

Although Trump did not mention the Paris accord on climate change establishing emission levels of greenhouse gases, which entered into force in late 2016, during his presidential campaign the magnate had promised to withdraw the US from the accord and called climate change a “hoax” invented by China.

However, the administration still has not decided whether to withdraw from the Paris agreement.