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Phil Plait: Trump’s Plan to Eliminate NASA Climate Research Is Ill-Informed and Dangerous

Sunday, November 27, 2016 16:14
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Desdemona Despair

Arctic sea ice extent, 27 November 2016. Graphic: NSIDC

By Phil Plait
23 November 2016

(Slate) – In a month where it’s easy to get outrage fatigue at the incoming Donald Trump administration, he still finds a way to be brazenly awful and make terrible, dangerous decisions.

In an interview with the Guardian, Bob Walker, a senior Trump adviser, said that Trump will eliminate NASA’s Earth science research. This is the mission directorate of NASA that, among other important issues, studies climate change.

In other words, Trump and his team want to stop NASA from studying climate change. From the article:

NASA’s Earth science division is set to be stripped of funding in favor of exploration of deep space, with the president-elect having set a goal during the campaign to explore the entire solar system by the end of the century.

This confirms essentially the same comments made by Walker in late October at a Federal Aviation Administration committee meeting.

The motivation behind this is clear: Utter and complete denial of science. I’ve written many times that Trump denies climate change is even real, saying it’s a Chinese hoax. He’s said there’s no drought in California, even while the majority of the state is under intense drought conditions. He picked a climate change denier to advise him on energy policy during his campaign, and picked an even more egregious denier to head up the EPA transition effort. In a recent statement he appears to have softened that hard-line stance, but given the torrent of lies dropping from Trump’s mouth, his history of science denial, and Walker’s current statements, I see no reason to believe Trump’s attitude has changed. [more]

Trump’s Plan to Eliminate NASA Climate Research Is Ill-Informed and Dangerous

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