One of the worst aspects of Donald Trump being elected to office – beyond his contempt for democratic norms, his love of strongman rulers, and his outright ignorance on racial issues – is his disdain for climate science. As the planet’s temperatures accelerate at a rate much worse than climate models once projected, the last thing we need is a president who not only writes off decades worth of scientific data as a Chinese hoax, as Trump did on Twitter, but who is openly hostile to the research efforts of scientists who suggest his policies of deregulation are unsustainable and dangerous.
It hardly comes as a surprise to find out that the administration has managed to suppress over 1,400 studies conducted by its own researchers at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Among the findings suppressed by the Trump administration is evidence that climate change will cause a number of crop failures in the near future, cause shortages in dairy production, as well as crops with fewer nutrients. The information was released Thursday by Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, who sits on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry.
The effort to suppress these reports is a continuous pattern by the Trump administration. In the past, they refused to let the USDA release a plan on fighting climate change. It’s also a pattern seen in the administrations of former Republican governors like Rick Scott, who forbade state employees from discussing climate change in emails.
Donald Trump knows he needs the support of farmers to win in 2020 – but he also knows that addressing climate change would be an admission that he’s wrong about something. It would also mean acknowledging that his administration’s policy of deregulation that keeps his donors around is also wrong and unsustainable.
Of course, the choice between reality and being wrong is a no-brainer for Trump – who somehow thinks that ignoring the reality of climate change means the Earth won’t be worse off. This is why, above anything else, the planet cannot afford another four years of Trump. Every year we endure this administration, the less options we have to save a planet he and his cronies are actively destroying.
James Sullivan is the assistant editor of Brain World Magazine and an advocate of science-based policy making