What NRDC Is Doing to Fight Trump’s Anti-Environment Agenda

NRDC’s chief counsel explains the best way to beat back the Trump administration’s attack on our health and environment: sue.

The following is a transcript of the video.

Mitchell Bernard, NRDC Chief Counsel: The opponent that we're facing now, the Trump administration, is the single worst enemy of the environment and human health that I think we've ever had.

We've lived through the Reagan years, the Gingrich Congress, the Bush II years. It was nothing like this. This is the worst.

One of the infuriating things about this administration and about the president himself is that he lies all the time, and he lies with apparent impunity. You cannot do that in court. It doesn't work in court. Facts matter, evidence matters. There are no alternative facts.

There's a whole architecture of environmental and human health protections that have been built in this country for the last 47 years, and the Trump administration means to destroy that architecture. It wants to burn that building down. We need to stop them.

NRDC has been litigating cases, suing polluters, holding them accountable since its founding in 1970. It's part of the DNA of NRDC. We litigate under the full range of environmental laws: the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act. We actually helped write some of these laws. But a law on the books is only words on paper.

NRDC has to enforce the law in order to protect people against what this administration is doing. We've brought successful cases and won relief for citizens all over the country, from the Port of Los Angeles to the interior of California to the Great Lakes to the Everglades to the Penobscot River in Maine. There is no place in this country where we have not sued and triumphed to protect citizens.

We're going to fight these people every step of the way. Every unlawful move they make in the environment and human health arena, we're going to meet them in court, we're going to sue them, and we're going to prevail.

Tell Trump we won't stop fighting global climate change

Stop Trump's assault on our nation's drinking water

Personal Action

Use NRDC's toolkit to help you take action against the Trump administration's agenda.

NRDC tracks the Trump administration’s assaults on the environment.

Policy Primer

Let’s not forget what America looked like before we had the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Our rivers caught on fire, our air was full of smog, and it stank (literally).

Personal Action

Turn your city into a climate sanctuary, rally on Main Street, and other ways to make change globally by acting locally.

onEarth Story

In quantifying carbon pollution’s damage to society, Trump sees America as an island unto itself—and we all know what climate change does to islands.

What's At Stake

The administration’s assault on our environment and health is unlike any threat we’ve ever faced.

Personal Action

Sometimes the best way to turn your anger into action is to pick up the phone. Follow these tips to minimize your anxiety and maximize your impact.

Personal Action

President Trump and the Republican-led Congress are poised to wipe out crucial environmental safeguards. Here’s how you can join the fight.

Policy Primer

Trump likens our “inner cities” to war zones . . . then guts the programs geared to safeguard clean air and water for low-income communities of color.


Two brothers tell the story of how their mother died from eating peanut butter, all from a lack of food-safety inspections.

What's At Stake

The regulations that protect Americans’ health, economy, and environment now need our protection.


As our national monuments come under attack by Trump, park conservationist Audrey Peterman reminds us that protecting our monuments is also about protecting the legacy of America’s people.


The Trump administration’s review of national monuments threatens America’s culture and natural beauty.

Policy Primer

Industrial polluters have gone to great lengths to stifle environmental advocacy, but their expansion of censorship laws has finally crossed a line for some federal judges.

NRDC in Action

JingJing Qian, director of NRDC’s China program, is bearing witness to some truly remarkable changes taking place in her home country. She’s also helping to make those changes happen.

On Location

Partnering with NRDC and ACLU, residents of this Michigan city took their local government to court in a battle for safe drinking water.

Midwest Dispatch

Southern Illinois is waiting for Trump’s promised coal boom, but job prospects are still a bust.

NRDC in Action

NRDC Chief Counsel Mitch Bernard takes on big polluters, climate deniers, and their powerful allies—including those who sit in the West Wing.

What's At Stake

Vulnerable communities across America pay the highest price for environmental justice issues brought upon by polluters.

Action Figure

Jazz pianist Fabian Almazan started Biophilia Records to make great music—and environmental change.

NRDC in Action

Meet a handful of the NRDC staffers who resisted Trump’s attacks and defended our environment in 2017—and who won’t stop fighting anytime soon.

Drawing Out the Science

From fisticuffs to force-feeding—a history of the fight for women's rights.

Personal Action

Insert yourself in the policy-making process. At town hall meetings and in public hearings, during comment periods and in our courts, government officials have to listen to us—whether they like it or not.

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