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Hi Jesse,

Yes, I agree that when the new administration says a Climate Action Plan is unnecessary, I interpret that to mean they reject the science of modern climate change. But the statement on their website doesn't come right out and say that. It just objects to a previous policy without saying why.

I try to keep in mind that even among people who agree that climate is changing, and that we're at least in part responsible, they might disagree on what action we should take. And I suppose one extreme view is that we don't do anything, i.e. an action plan is unnecessary.

We'll have to see where this goes (if anywhere), and more importantly stand up for the view that science matters. This isn't just about climate science, you know.

Dan, maybe your comment was thoroughly tongue-in-cheek, but there's an implicit and valuable message to what you say: government can't take every scientific discipline into account, only the ones where ignoring that component of science has the potential to impact large sectors of the country negatively. I think the vast majority of climate change scientists would agree that climate change is having huge negative impacts across numerous sectors and should be taken seriously.

At the risk of sounding maudlin, I'm reminded of when I was growing up, when scientific studies on the impacts of acid rain, clean water, and the ozone hole helped drive policy changes that ultimately benefited large numbers of people. I still remember a commercial about clean water, where a fisherman is wading through a stream, picking up dead fish and commenting "Hey, they don't smell so bad." The clean water act was signed into law soon after (although recently it has come under attack). The scary difference now is that a new political climate (ha!) is rejecting science, not debating how to deal with our problems.

Is Archean geology important to public policy? Maybe, and I'm just too ignorant to know. But personally I'm not bothered by the fact that one of my beloved fields of inquiry, metamorphic petrology, isn't explicitly addressed in government. Well, except that a couple years ago congressional Republicans tried to gut funding to NSF Geosciences because it engages in climate change research, cuts that would affect us all, even the lowly petrologists.

Best,

Matt


On Sun, Jan 22, 2017 at 9:14 AM, Jesse Walters <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
There is a mention of climate on the new whitehouse.gov site, but it's not what any of us were hoping for:

"For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule."

-Jesse

On Sun, Jan 22, 2017 at 10:00 AM, Matt Kohn <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Hello again,

I was recently informed (perhaps "kindly rebuked” is more accurate) for implying that the incoming administration had deliberately removed information on climate change from its web pages. I agree my statement that climate change was “removed” is perhaps extreme. With a new administration, much (perhaps all) web content is removed from the Whitehouse web site and archived in a publically accessible site. The old content is replaced with new content.

What I should have said is that climate change information, which was present on the old Whitehouse web site, is now completely *omitted* from the new Whitehouse web site.

Please understand that the petition asks that the Whitehouse *restore and maintain* climate change science on its web pages. It does not request that the adminstration use the same web pages, rather that it provides and maintains climate change information. I think this is a reasonable request.

Please excuse my faulty language.

Matt

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University of Maine



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Boise State University
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