Trump putting climate denier in charge of EPA?

  • Published on September 26th, 2016

By Meteor Blades

Back in 2007, Myron Ebell said: “Every interview I do, when I’m asked about scientific issues, I say I’m not a climate scientist. I’m global-warmingjust giving you the informed layman’s perspective.”

Too modest by far—then and now. Ebell certainly is not a climate scientist. He is instead a disinformation specialist on global warming, working out of the D.C. offices of the right-wing, Koch-funded Competitive Enterprise Institute as chief of the Center for Energy and Environment.

He is also chairman of Cooler Heads Coalition, a collection of propagandists that “question[s] global warming alarmism and oppose energy-rationing policies.”

And now he’s been picked to head Donald Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency transition team.

Robin Bravender reports:

Ebell is a well-known and polarizing figure in the energy and environment realm. His participation in the EPA transition signals that the Trump team is looking to drastically reshape the climate policies the agency has pursued under the Obama administration. Ebell’s role is likely to infuriate environmentalists and Democrats but buoy critics of Obama’s climate rules. […]

Ebell’s views appear to square with Trump’s when it comes to EPA’s agenda. Trump has called global warming “bullshit” and he has said he would “cancel” the Paris global warming accord and roll back President Obama’s executive actions on climate change.

Infuriating? That’s putting it mildly. As President Obama has recently taken to describing the information passed along by his staff during briefings on climate change, the possible ascendance of Ebell and his ilk are “terrifying.” As with his other campaign appointments, Trump makes no secret of where he would go in drafting policy. If it’s not the most myopic, retrograde approach, then it’s not on the agenda.

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Ebell has trashed Pope Francis for his encyclical on climate change, claiming it would harm the poor.

In 2015, he noted that the only thing people agree on regarding greenhouse gases is that carbon dioxide will heat up the atmosphere, but argues that nobody knows how much or whether it will be harmful:

“The policies being promoted are insane … If you believe energy poverty is a good thing, you should support controls on carbon emissions. But most of the world disagrees with that.”

The policies Ebell supports are what are insane. Lethal. And self-interested since fossil fuel companies are big backers of CEI.

  • Also appointed by Trump: Mike McKenna to guide the Department of Energy transition team. He’s worked in the energy field for former Virginia Republican Gov. George Allen and in the George H.W. Bush administration. He’s currently a lobbyist for Koch Companies Public Sector LLC, Southern Company Services, Dow Chemical Co. and Competitive Power Ventures Inc.
  • David Bernhardt, formerly with the U.S. Department of Interior, will be heading the DOI transition team. Bernhardt works the Natural Resources Department of the law firm Brownstein Hyatt Faber Shreck. Among other things, he has represented clients involved in energy development on American Indian lands and businesses accused of violating the Department of the Interior’s regulations.

Gag me, for sure. But none of these choices can be considered unexpected.

(Originally appeared at DailyKos.)

About the Author

Meteor Blades is a writer and contributing editor at DailyKos. He believes there is something profoundly wrong with our system. - the unchecked accumulation of wealth and power into the hands of a very small group of corporate business interests has contributed to the wholesale corruption of our political system. For an understanding about the level of corruption in our country, he encourages you to view these two PBS documentaries: (1). ,The Untouchables; (2) The United States of ALEC.