As soon as President Donald Trump took office in January, many immediately noticed significant changes on Environmental Protection Agency website pages. For example, reports Emily Atkin, “mention of human-caused climate change was deleted, as was a description of international climate talks.”
“The shifts were small, but meaningful; many said they signaled a new era for the EPA, one in which the agency would shy away from directly linking carbon emissions to global warming and strive to push Trump’s “America First” message,” Atkin notes.
Historically in charge of developing clean water standards for states, the EPA’s Office of Science and Technology’s website has always said its standards were “science-based,” but now, according to the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative, the agency instead says it will develop “economically and technologically achievable standards” to address the critical problem of water pollution.
What these changes mean essentially, says this dedicated group of concerned scientists and academics who track changes to about tens of thousands of federal government webpages, is that the the EPA will—under its new administrator, Scott Pruitt—prioritize business interests, particularly those of big oil and gas, over public health and science.