Climate change is a hot topic—literally. With 2016 declared the hottest year, followed by 2015 and 2014, looking toward figuring out how to stop the increase in temperature would seem logical. But maybe that is what this new administration lacks: logic.
As President Donald Trump infamously said:
With his strong stance against climate change and the EPA, Trump seems to be doing everything in his power to shut it down. At the start of his presidency, a blackout was put on the EPA. Although that raised fear among the science community, Trump’s latest move has sparked even more fear—the nomination of Scott Pruitt as the administrator of the EPA.
Scott Pruitt, republican politician from Oklahoma, is a climate change denier. “Scientists continue to disagree about the degree and extent of global warming and its connection to the actions of mankind,” he said. And the evidence behind that? Nonexistent.
Pruitt’s plans for the future of the EPA bring fear to scientists globally. His blueprints consist of repealing “climate change rules, cut staffing levels, close regional offices and permanently weaken the agency’s regulatory authority.”
If that isn’t scary enough, on Feb. 22, over 6,000 pages of emails were released, linking his ties with major oil and gas producers and goals to annul environmental protections. Democrats and EPA employees fought against his nomination, and urged for the emails to be released prior to his confirmation, but failed.
The threat of the government scrubbing environmental data or not allowing citizens access it is real, says Conservation Professor Lisa Needles. When Trump was first elected, scientists began storing environmental data to different servers and even in different countries out of fear the data would be wiped. Pruitt’s nomination and confirmation is a huge blow to scientists, but it is also very sobering says Needles.
Ecosystems and species around the world are already facing consequences which are only going to continue to escalate, says Needles. Not only is climate change real, but it is happening now, says Needles, which is why Pruitt’s nomination will have drastic effects.
As the earth continues to get warmer because of the excess CO2, the ocean temperature continues to increase. When water heats up, it also expands, causing the ocean to rise. Cities that are built by the coast are going to get hit hard within the century.