Trump Proposes Broad Range of Environmental, Energy and Health Cuts

Credit: NASA

If anyone had the slightest hope that Donald Trump might spare global warming research in his proposed spending plan, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney stuck a knife through it during a contentious press conference on Thursday.

“As to climate change, I think the President was fairly straightforward saying we’re not spending money on that anymore,” he said. “We consider that to be a waste of your money to go out and do that.”

The budget blueprint gave plenty of examples of the president’s hostility to climate research in particular and environmental policy in general. The proposed cuts include:

  • a 31 percent reduction in the budget for the Environmental Protection Agency, reducing spending from $7.3 billion to $5.7 billion;
  • elimination of the Global Climate Change Initiative;
  • an end to payments to the United Nations’ (UN) climate change programs through the elimination of U.S. funding for the Green Climate Fund and its two precursor Climate Investment Funds.
  • the discontinuation of funding for the EPA’s Clean Power Plan;
  • the cutting the EPA’s Office of Research and Development budget nearly in half from $488 million to approximately $250 million, a reduction of $233 million;
  • the elimination of the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy;
  • the cancellation of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Title 17 Innovative Technology Loan Guarantee Program;
  • the elimination of the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program;
  • a reduction of $900 million in the DOE’s Office of Science budget;
  • a reduction of $102 million in NASA’s Earth science program;
  • the cancellation of three NASA climate change orbital programs;
  • the shutting off of Earth facing instruments on the DSCOVR spacecraft, which is already in space;
  • the elimination of $250 million in NOAA grants and programs supporting coastal and marine management, research, and education including the Sea Grant program.

The administration gave a number of rationales for the reductions. In some cases such as the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program amd Title 17 Innovative Technology Loan Guarantee Program, it said the work would be better left to the private sector. The administration said some programs would be better left to state and local authorities.

Trump has previously stated that he believed climate change was a plot by the Chinese government to shut down American heavy industry. He later claimed he was joking. One thing is clear: the president and Congressional Republicans do not believe it’s a serious threat to the world.

The cuts in research were not just limited to environment and energy. The Department of Health and Huiman Services budget would be cut from $84.1 billion to $69 billion, a reduction of $15.1 billion or 17.9 percent.

The National Institutes of Health wouled see more than a third of that reduction — $5.8 billion– with its budget reduced to $25.9 million.

“The Budget includes a major reorganization of NIH’s Institutes and Centers to help focus resources on the highest priority research and training activities, including: eliminating the Fogarty International Center; consolidating the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality within NIH; and other consolidations and structural changes across NIH organizations and activities,” the budget blueprint states.

American Geophysical Union (AGU) Executive Director and CEO Christine McEntee slammed the proposed cutbacks as shortsighted and dangerous in a statement issued on Thursday.

“President Trump’s proposed budget, if enacted, would be a step backward for scientific progress, jeopardize the U.S.’s role as a leader in innovation, and harm the American public. The cuts to federal agencies such as DOE, EPA, NOAA, NSF, USGS, and programs within NASA, will put the safety and wellbeing of millions of families and companies at risk,” McEntree said. “These agencies provide research and data that are critical in informing and shaping decisions that protect public health and safety, support national security, and facilitate economic stability and job growth in the US….

“Investment in Earth and space science has given us better satellite data for our military, more accurate forecasting that protects the public from natural hazards, and improved our understanding of the effects of a changing climate on agricultural, ecosystems, and human health,” she added.

“Without the critical data and information this research provides, who will farmers turn to when they need help managing their crops? Who will the Pentagon turn to when they need information to support effective troop movements? Who will families turn to when a hurricane or tornado threatens their lives and livelihoods?” McEntree said.

  • mike_shupp

    “La République n’a pas besoin de savants ni de chimistes; le cours de la justice ne peut être suspend.” I see the revolution is still on track.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Look at all that fake data …. according to most conservatives. They’re not worried tho, even if they’re wrong, their god will save us. Or if you were to translate their answer from English into Arabic, and back to English it would be “god willing”. It’s a heck of a environmental policy.

  • JamesG

    As opposed to the arrogance to think that anything that can be done will make a difference, or that anything can even be done to make a difference. Oh, but because you think we should try (with other people’s money) that you are better or smarter than everyone else. But in reality all the Church of Global Warming believers are doing is resisting change, attempting to hold static a dynamic and ever changing planet. It would be amusing except that you want the rest of us to pay for your folly.

  • JamesG

    Oh please…

  • Your IQ is less than 100. You are below average in intelligence.

    And you are not the rest of us. That’s authoritarian.

  • Can I have some context? Some comment content would be nice too.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Not at all James, I can’t rule out your assertion that the data shown in the plot is independent of industrial civilization. However you only rule it in because it fits in with your economic religious beliefs. Just because your belief can’t be ruled out does not rule it in. Ive already discussed with you at length to provide a scientific basis for your belief that it’s completely independent of human activity, and you admit you lack the scientific background to back it up. My comment was not aimed at conservatives like yourself, you admit that global warming is actually happening. You don’t assert the data plot above is false. Or do you?

    If it makes you feel any better, I did not believe it either for quite a long time. I sat back with wonder at the likes of Scientific American openly stating that they would no longer publish articles that question global warming, and I took note in the early 2000’s when predictions of glacier free mountain ranges by 2010. I took note and waited. However enough are gone that tells me the models are wrong, but close enough for me to buy into the overall argument. Not to mention what’s happening in the Arctic, and ocean acidification.

    As for my being rude. I’m being rude to conservatives because even after the failures of the Bush Jr admin they still, and you do too, bandy their ideas about as if they’re natures gifts to man in the face of taking the US from projected to be debt free by 2012, victorious in the Cold War, in command of 85% of the worlds nations naval forces, owner of the only nuclear striking force worth a damn, and the only country that can move it’s armed forces about the planet, and after all that to sell half it’s industrial capability to China. To not expect them to raise their own armed forces and use them to further their own national goals after conservative free market economics would transfer all that technology to them in exchange for paper money. After all that and they still yell at people who dare question their politics and economics. Well, James, I’m yelling back.

  • JamesG

    Er… either you are confusing me with someone else or you cut and pasted this from another argument you had with someone else, or someone did. I’m not even sure what this rambling post’s point is. Maybe you’ve had more than I on this St. Patty’s Day?

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Well if you’re not the JamesG, I’ve been discussing with for the past few months on this blog, I apologize. I think the chances are quite small that there are two JamesG’s who argue from very similar points of view using similar rhetorical arguments. If so, small world. If not, nice try.

  • JamesG

    Or perhaps you are just wrong. Again.

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Again? So you admit you’re the same JamesG I’ve talked with in the past? If so that’s a pretty dishonest discussion tactic. What gives? So I guess your conservative stance allows you to lie to people to try to trip them up? How can we take you seriously after doing this?

  • JamesG

    No I just had no idea what you were talking about. You post had nothing to do with mine as far as I could tell besides kinda having something to do with Global Warming and you thinking you are smart. Perhaps you could try again? With less poofery?

  • Andrew Tubbiolo

    Well after that, not only are you worthless, you’re dishonest. You’re not worth my time typing, and I’ll just assume you’re a very flawed individual. Esp since you were trying to take advantage of someone by tripping them up with a lie. It’s one thing to be wrong, it’s entirely another thing to make false data and pass it to others and expect a honest assessment. You’re low JamesG.

  • JamesG

    Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you to Andy. Have a good weekend.

  • Kapitalist

    You are free to pay for all of that yourself anyway. The government just will stop looting other peoples’ monies for these purposes. The money are still around in society for people to use as they wish.

    My objection against climate politics is mainly that it is very questionable that a warmer (or “changed”) climate would be worse than today’s climate, and that the proposed abolishment of energy, transport, industry, agriculture, space flight in order to try to conserve today’s climate for ever would make anything better. The climate policy would murder billions of people and the rest would live in utter poverty and oppression like in North Korea, when the politicians (aren’t they a bright little group?) dictates exactly how everyone must breath and eat and move and talk.

    That is all only about politics and economics, completely unrelated to climate science. Climate science in itself has the obvious problem of being extremely immature, well illustrated by the totally false temperature forecasts made 20 years ago. And another 20 years earlier they predicted global cooling, a new ice age. Both were wrong, the temperature has not changed, something no alarmist ever predicts. Too little is known about how a climate works for this to be useful as input for any kind of decision making. I want to see more climate research by those who have any good ideas about how to do it, but that government stays ways out of it because the whole issue has become so politicized that real science hardly is possible as it is if financed by tax money.

  • Max

    Very simply put. We have Conservatives and we have Liberals.

    Ton of positions and debate between the two.
    However, climate, global warming should not be an issue. Forget models, we gather data points, we have thermometers and NOW they prove the Earth has been warming. If for 10 years you registered your daily home thermometer the data would prove that.

    Liberals are wrong and Conservatives are wrong. But in this debate Liberals are correct. So Conservatives vote for your candidates, your politicians but do not support this position of denial. Debate a liberal in public but in private write to your politician and demand a change of position. It is your air, water and economy too. Even if you don’t believe it wouldn’t you want to play it safe?

    Proof of this is that there are many democratic countries with two political ideologies and in those countries the Conservatives are not disputing the science, they are simply disputing what to do and how much to pay.

  • JamesG

    No because the debate is whether there is anthropogenic climate change, ie; its our fault. And if anything can be done, or if the costs of doing so would be worse than the problem. In that liberals are not correct and the debate is hardly over, regardless of how often True Believers attempt to steam-roller over opposition to their belief by assuming fait accompli like you’ve done here.

  • duheagle

    You are quite wrong, sir. Actual data does not support the AGW hypothesis until political-activist-scientists in the climate science establishment subject said data to mysterious “adjustments.” There is massive fraud going on in service of a progressive political agenda. Period. Full stop.

  • duheagle

    There are excellent reasons for claiming the “data” said to support the AGW hypothesis are fake. I’m an atheist so God, Allah and Cthulu don’t enter into my conclusions. The faith-based believers in this fight are all the progressives who believe that, as they have driven all the heretics out of the climate science field, they are now entitled to have the rest of us meekly bow down and accept their lies as gospel. No.

  • Your IQ is less than 100. Your intelligence is below the nation average. Considering how dumbed down the average American has become over the last 50 years under mostly Republican administrations, that puts your personality into a very bad light.

  • Science and technology development are not for you. I myself wonder why you are even interested in space and how you could even call yourself a space cadet.

  • Ok, so your intelligence is well below the national average and you are predisposed to wild conspiracy theories and don’t have the intellectual, mathematical and scientific chops to understand that or verify that.

    :Let me guess, you voted for Donald Trump. America’s first treasonous president.

  • Let’s all be happy with our conspiracy theories and treasonous administration.

  • duheagle

    My IQ has been measured several times at two standard deviations above the U.S. median. Nice try.

    I have no idea what your IQ is and don’t much care. You might be an authentic genius for all I know. You are, at a minimum, perfectly capable of communicating in literate English. That certainly puts you ahead of a lot of other people I encounter on these forums.

    That said, comparing IQ’s is no more probative in assessing the truth of a scientific proposition than would be measuring our respective wedding tackle. Ad hominem is a style of argument and a form of logical fallacy. What it is most assuredly not is an actual, rational argument.

    But it does seem to be your nearly all-purpose go-to. Once again, insult is not argument. If you are unable, unwilling, or just too lazy to address actual issues in contention then your intelligence, whatever its actual magnitude, is going unused.

  • I’m a rocket scientist (engineering scientist), a theoretical physicist and a quantum chemist who has just recently developed several entirely new domains of science, so I generally don’t try to educate cranks like yourself. Certainly not about well established and understood very simple principles of planetary astrophysics and the radiative properties of various molecules and molecular configurations. You’ll just have to figure it out on your own. I can however get you started by point you to Weart.

    You’ll just have to try and follow the references. They don’t lead to crank conspiracy and shill websites like WUWT (Tony) and to Aunt Judy.

  • duheagle

    Re: my intelligence, see above.

    Conspiracies within the progressive wing of the climate science “community” – which, following the purges and witch-burnings of recent years is now pretty much the only wing it has left – are, sadly, not theories but demonstrable facts. That has been publicly obvious since the release of the so-called Climategate e-mails back in 2009. Since then, the audacity and crudity of the prevarication and outright thuggery now rampant in the field has simply gotten worse.

    And, yes, I did vote for Trump. Didn’t even hold my nose or anything. We’ve already suffered through eight years of a flagrantly anti-American presidency by the most obdurately arrogant and stupid man ever to hold that office. We definitely didn’t need to double down on stupid by electing a greedy and heedless felon to replace our erstwhile would-be Sun King.

    There are a lot of swamps Mr. Trump needs to promptly set about draining. The almost completely corrupt climate science establishment is one of the worst, though, fortunately, nowhere near the largest. He needs to burn the whole thing to the ground, sift the ashes for usable nails and rebuild something that is actually scientific in its place.

  • Ok, so not only are you a science crank, you’re an insane science crank.

    Thanks for that.

  • Kapitalist

    Temperatures are NOT rising,. But lets put that data point thing aside. How would it be bad if temperature were rising? What would be good with forever preserving the climate exactly as it is today?

    The science will,, and must, always be debated. I’m interested in the politics and economics of it. How could climate science prove that a certain economic policy is good?

  • Kapitalist

    And there another communist Al Gore slave comes and tries to silence anyone who points out the bleeding obvious in the failure of the ruling politicians’ story. Many of you rats have now left the sinking ship, but the most stupid ones seem to not get it, the doomsday ship is sinking, the lie has been revealed, the Kaiser was naked. Smart rats was onto the lie as long as the money was in their pockets, but since election day, that is no longer true. Funny to see the most stupid leftists unable to accept this new reality.

  • Kapitalist

    You are arguing very factually and you are very charming! Congratulations. But your hate propaganda doesn’t work anymore. The weather and the economy are always so obvious to everyone, that that even you cannot lie about it. Even if you have once taken a course in Soviet propaganda methods.

  • The reality of your rant is that it does not contain a single number or SI unit.

  • I was more looking for numbers and SI units, like for instance an average 3 K ECS derived from multiple lines of evidence, and an average 0.7 Watts per square meter top of the atmosphere continuous radiative energy imbalance, also derived from multiple lines of evidence. The oceanic problems like the loss of sea ice and coral reefs are pretty much self evident to almost anyone.

    Not you though, apparently.

  • Kapitalist

    Your competence is totally irrelevant to climate policy. You provide no evidence at all about how the economy works and no evidence at all about what every individual human being chooses to live her life. Still, you claim, just like the Soviet Marxists, that everyone must be a slave to your theory about chemicals. You have gone WAAAY beyond your area of competence and I advice you to quite down now, because the people has diselected the tyrants you believed in (another failed forecasts of your failed “science”).

  • I’m only really interested in the slow painful process of creating off world economies, sorry. With people like you on the planet, your economy is fucked.

  • Kapitalist

    Politics is not measured in SI units. Climate science tries to use SI units, but fails to make any relevant forecast. Not because the scientists are stupid or corrupt (although that occurs everywhere once in a while), but because the climate is very complex and poorly understood.

    Enter the Marxists who use words about climate science but who preach political tyranny!

    Is CO2 in the atmosphere increasing? Yes!
    Is it because of humans? Obviously!
    Does it affect the climate? That’s unknown.
    Should we abolish all industry and agriculture because of it. No!

  • windbourne

    DOE is being cut, when we need new nuclear reactors AND new nuclear bombs.
    These guys are absolute IDIOTS.

    Hopefully, the few republicans left in the GOP will stand up and say no to many of this.

  • Maybe you failed to notice this thing called electricity and electromagnetism. Even in its most primitive form it’s really cool. You should check it out.

  • Yep, nice space website polluted by warmunist loons. I had 7 years in
    the meteorology/atmospheric science business professionally and have
    studied the “global warming” subject extensively out of residual professional interest. Doesn’t seem to be anything to worry about. ECS is likely to be unnoticeable (i.e barely measurable) at less than 1 deg C. Anyone who thinks they can measure the temperature of the planet to better than about +/- 1 deg C is deluded.
    We’re in an interglacial where the temperature has varied by several degrees up and down when human activity had nothing to do with it. The ice will be back soon enough.

  • Paul451

    The GOP doesn’t seem to know what the DoE does. Most of them think it has something to do with climate change.

    Trump put Rick Perry in charge of the DoE, replacing a nuclear physicists. The same Perry who repeatedly called for the complete cancellation of the DoE during his own presidential campaign, without anyone else on the stage (including Trump) even knowing enough to ridicule him for wanting to cancel the agency that is primarily responsible for the maintenance and security of America’s nuclear weapons stockpile, the maintenance and security of America’s nuclear waste storage, and the development of nuclear reactors for the US Navy.

  • Michael Grigoni

    In light of the incessant non-sequitur ad hominem exchanges on this site might I suggest a more appropriate classic taunt:

    “I don’t want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food
    trough wiper. I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a
    hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.” “Go away now or I shall taunt you a second time”

  • You IQ is unfortunalely less than 100 and your intelligence is unfortunately less than the national average. There is no helping you. Your only avenue to enlightenment is to help yourself. That involves using a search engine to find a search engine and then typing a few clever key words or phrases into the search bar and ignoring anything from WUWT and Aunt Judy.

  • If i thought they could be educated or educate themselves I would try to help them. I even posted a link to Weart. These people have been Aunt Judyized and are prime examples of the Dunning Kruger effect. Taunting them is the only option for entertainment here. So go ahead, taunt me. I’m immune to it.

  • windbourne

    crazy, is it not?

    The idea of Perry being in control of our nuke future is actually getting VERY scary.

    This admin is basically going to become the WORST admin and make even Buchanan look great (who took us into Civil war and is widely regarded as the WORST president. Rightly).
    At this time, I am hoping that the GOP has enough sanity inside of their group to realize what a nightmare that this has become.

  • duheagle

    The DOE has always been a dog’s breakfast of missions that don’t belong in a single agency and many of which don’t belong in any agency. Nuclear weapons design and production, civilian power reactors and naval power reactors should all be in separate agencies with narrowly-defined missions. The rest of the DOE should simply be scrapped. It mostly seems to consist of doomed and wasteful efforts to foist so-called “renewable energy” on baseload utilities in place of fossil-fired alternatives, hand billions in money to politically well-connected Democratic party contributors to build tomorrow’s failed solar panel plants and quickly abandoned wind farms, plus a lot of stupid “energy efficiency” regulation that has, among other things, made American large appliances barely functional and resulted in top-down federal diktats about things like light bulbs.

    The complaints about neglected reactors and bombs are particularly rich. Obama actually had two nuclear physicists serve as Sec. DOE during his administrations. The first was even a Nobel Prize winner. They seem to have been the only two nuclear physicists on the government payroll who actually had real jobs during the Obama administration and they weren’t doing physics. Neither was much of anybody else. Obama was actively opposed to nuclear deterrence force modernization and, at best, indifferent to both naval and civilian power reactors. Trump has been publicly favorable. Under which presidency does it seem likelier positive and substantive steps will actually be taken to correct the neglect of all these things? I know what my answer is.

  • duheagle

    Partisan nonsense. The only recent President who will be dicing with James Buchanan for last place is Obama.

  • windbourne

    Partisan? The only one of us that is partisan is you.

  • windbourne

    Even the top brass not only want DOE, but have stated many time that a $1 spent on foreign aide saves $10 in the military. Likewise, they want us to address climate change or prepare for a real WWIV ( we are currently in WW3).

  • duheagle

    Not a single thing you have said here is even remotely true except, “it is your air, water and economy too.” Sure is. And a CO2-centric witch hunt does nothing to improve the general condition of any of the three, especially the last.

    The only thing the Warmists have are their failed models. Actual data measured out in the actual world don’t support any of the alarmist nonsense being peddled – at least not until said data has been mysteriously “adjusted” by the quack pseudo-scientists who have taken over pretty much the entirety of the current climate science establishment.

    The progressive project has always been to achieve total power over every aspect of everyone’s life. Climate Change (nee Global Warming) is just the latest excuse for pushing the old leftist iron dream of totalitarian utopia. Truckling to the would-be eco-commissars is, in no way, “playing it safe.”

    As for the alleged exceptionalism of the U.S. right in opposing all this Warmist nonsense, you are quite wrong. There is also massive resistance in the U.K., Australia, much of Eastern Europe, nearly all the developing world and most especially, in the two most populous nations on Earth, India and China. Far from being an all-but-complete worldwide consensus, Warmist alarmism is the parochial, and pretty much exclusive, project of Western leftists in a few wealthy countries. It’s just the latest centerpiece in a seemingly endless series of dreary limousine liberal crusades.

  • duheagle

    Under Obama, the top brass had to at least pretend to support his idiotic agenda to keep their jobs. A lot declined to do so and were eased out. Now that Trump is in office, I’m optimistic that real war fighters will quickly replace the affirmative action poster children and jumped-up REMF’s who spent entire careers in Pentagon staff jobs. One of the best is already running the DoD so we’re off to a good start.

    I am encouraged, however, that you have noticed we are already in WW3. You differ hugely, in that respect, with most who otherwise share your politics, particularly pretty much the entirety of the now-departed or departing Obama administration.

  • duheagle

    Of course I’m partisan. There are sides here, sir, and they are contesting for the future of the Republic. You have apparently chosen yours and I have chosen mine. Be honest enough to admit it.