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Trump begins dismantling U.S. efforts to curb climate catastrophe

President Trump signed an anti-environmental executive order, directing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to begin rolling back the Clean Power Plan, which aims to curb carbon pollution more than 30 percent by 2030. His far-reaching directive eliminates climate considerations in environmental reviews conducted by federal agencies; reverses climate change mitigation measures for wildlife; overturns a coal-mining moratorium on public lands; opens those same lands to fracking; and kicks off the repeal processes for two rules that reduce emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. The order also takes aim at the “social cost of carbon,” which the government uses to quantify the negative economic impact of pollution, such as its effect on health care costs.

But wait, that’s not all—the repeal of four Obama-era executive orders to shrink the federal government’s own carbon footprint and help boost climate resiliency here and abroad are also underway. Trump is attempting to cease almost all efforts to limit, deal with, or understand climate change. That is not what Americans want: According to a recent poll, 59 percent oppose a repeal of regulations that combat climate change. Another poll by Gallup found concern for climate change this year at an eight-year high. Trump’s reckless actions guarantee that future generations will suffer from more pollution. Climate change will get worse, all while fossil fuel companies gain.

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