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EPA staff talk about the role of humans in climate change



Environmental Protection Agency staff this week received a list of "topics to talk about" highlighting the uncertainty about how human activities contribute to climate change.

A staff member of the Office of Public Affairs distributed the eight topics of discussion to regional staff. The list offered suggestions on how to talk with local communities and Indian tribes about how to adapt to extreme weather conditions, rising seas, and other environmental issues.

Employees created the email, first on Wednesday by HuffPost, based on controversial – and scientifically meaningless – statements made by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt on the current state of climate research.

"Human activities affect our climate in some way," states one of the points of discussion. "The ability to accurately measure the degree and magnitude of these effects, and what you can do about them, is subject to ongoing debate and dialogue."

Another states that while there has been "extensive" research and numerous reports of climate change, "clear gaps remain, including our understanding of the role of human activity and what we can do about it."

The list reflects statements by Pruitt, who along with other Trump officials has repeatedly stressed the insecurity about the role of humans played a role in warming the planet. Pruitt has also pushed for a government-sponsored exercise to question climate research and questioned whether global warming is "necessarily a bad thing".

Such comments bring Pruitt not only with leaders of other countries in conflict with climate scientists internationally. Even the government's own scientists have found that " is extremely probable that human influence was the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century." There has been no convincing warming in the last century alternative explanation supported by the extent of observation data. "

Most experts agree that burning fossil fuels is a major driver of climate change and that countries are drastically reducing emissions Sea level rise, stronger storms and prolonged droughts, prolonged forest fires and other environmental disasters.

"The EPO Administrator should not be busy telling scientists what they should do publicly about basic scientific information," said Michael Halpern, deputy director of the Center for Science and Democracy for the Union of Concerned Scientists , "The implication is that the EPA wants a political filter for all government scientific information, especially when it comes to climate change."

An EPA spokeswoman said in an e-mail: "The discussion points were developed by the Bureau for Public Affairs and the work of the Agency on Climate Change continues."

Apart from the issues that raise doubts about climate change, The EPA list "encourages science that helps states, local communities and tribes in planning and responding to information, extreme events and environmental disasters." The Authority also acknowledges the challenges that communities face when adapting to a self-reliant environment climate change "and" will continue to push for climate adaptation ".

Other federal offices on climate change remain a sensitive topic.

Last week, the Fish and Wildlife Service issued a guide, according to a Washington Post email, in which trained staff indicated that the fundraising requests they sent "may not contain general, generic terms" terms known by those is that they are related to divisive political issues or otherwise have a political association, meaning or conclusion. "

Th The agency did not say what could be considered politically selective, but there was one example that replaced the term" climate change "with a longer-term expression in italics:" This program will fund research activities that enhance our understanding of the impact extend to changing environmental conditions, such as the frequency of severe weather events. "

Asked about the policy, Interior Ministry spokeswoman Heather Swift said in an email that Fish and Wildlife made the change" to improve the process and accountability. "

" The goal of the policy is for applicants who get away from submitting forms with broad themes and instead submit more specific information about what they will use the taxpayer money for, "she said.

Read more: [19659019] EPO chief urges government's efforts to challenge climate change Science

On climate change, Scott Pruitt triggers a turmoil – and contradicts EPO's own website


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