A member of President Donald Trump’s transition team says he needs to do more to roll back climate regulations — and fast.
Myron Ebell, Trump’s former Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) transition chief, said Friday at a conference held by the Heartland Institute that he was “anxious” for Trump to fulfill his promise to withdraw from the Paris Agreement and undo the scientific and legal basis for regulating carbon dioxide emissions.
Trump has barely been in office for two months, but he and Republicans in Congress have already overturned several Obama-era environmental regulations and proposed a massive budget cut at the EPA.
Trump promised throughout his presidential campaign to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, an international deal aimed at keeping global temperatures from rising more than 2°C (3.6°F) by 2100 and the issue continues to resonate with his supporters. But Trump is reportedly considering keeping the deal thanks to pressure from his daughter Ivanka, her husband Jared Kushner and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.
Ebell also criticized Secretary of State Rex Tillerson for his defense of the Paris Agreement. “Secretary of State Rex Tillerson think it’s really nice to be able to go to international meetings and pal around with his fellow foreign ministers,” he told the Heartland Institute’s annual climate change conference. “Rex Tillerson may be from Texas and he may have been CEO of Exxon, but he’s part of the swamp.”
Ebell also listed the carbon dioxide endangerment finding, the legal underpinning of President Obama’s Clean Power Plan, as an issue where Trump needs to be pressured. Such a move would require the EPA to come up with a scientific argument for why carbon dioxide does not hurt human health.
“At some point it needs to be pointed out to President Trump and his administration that the people who elected Donald J. Trump are not wealthy Manhattanites,” he said, “including his children.”
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Write to Justin Worland / Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org