Irresponsible Executive Order on Infrastructure Ignores Climate Change, Will Waste Taxpayer Money

Statement of Elgie Holstein, Senior Director, EDF – August 15, 2017

“Today’s executive order reveals the extreme lengths to which President Trump is willing to go to pander to those who still deny the reality of climate change.  To roll back a key flood-risk reduction rule not only ignores the growing frequency of climate-exacerbated flooding, it is also another rejection of the international scientific consensus that action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to build infrastructure resiliency is needed urgently.  The result will be billions of taxpayer-funded infrastructure projects at risk of increased flooding and billions more spent to repair and re-build after storms.

“The Trump Administration should recognize that worsening climate impacts, including more frequent and more powerful storms, require a new national commitment to safer buildings, smarter siting, and more investment in natural  as well as other “green infrastructure” to reduce emissions and increase resiliency.

“From Louisiana to New Jersey, from Miami to Missouri, destructive flooding that was once considered rare is becoming more likely and increasingly routine, and it is foolhardy to steer federally-funded construction projects to ignore these trends.

“This decision puts ideology ahead of common sense, and will lead to a bigger burden for taxpayers. It’s time for smart planning based on reality, which is that our climate is changing. Ignoring the scientific conclusion of NASA and every major American scientific organization is a dangerous political game.”

– Elgie Holstein, Senior Director for Strategic planning, Environmental Defense Fund

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