GHG Emissions, Regulation, Regulation - May 1, 2017
Climate science site removed from EPA website
The U.S. EPA has begun making changes to the agency's website, which include the apparent removal of several pages of information related to climate change data.
The changes are intended to reflect the agency's new direction under President Donald Trump and Administrator Scott Pruitt, according to an April 29 statement issued by the EPA. The Washington Post reported April 29 that one of the pages that had already been removed had been used to challenge statements made by Pruitt; another contained detailed information on the EPA's Clean Power Plan — a rule introduced during the Obama administration that is now considered unlikely to be upheld — including fact sheets about greenhouse gas emissions.
In the statement, the EPA said the changes are intended to comply with agency ethics and legal guidance, including the use of proper archiving procedures. For example, the EPA said a screenshot of the Obama administration's website will remain available from the main page.
"As EPA renews its commitment to human health and clean air, land, and water, our website needs to reflect the views of the leadership of the agency," said J.P. Freire, Associate Administrator for Public Affairs. "We want to eliminate confusion by removing outdated language first and making room to discuss how we're protecting the environment and human health by partnering with states and working within the law."
Citing a person familiar with the matter who spoke on the condition of anonymity, the newspaper reported that the changes were approved by Pruitt and were being made "to avoid a conflict between the site's content and the policies the administration is now pursuing." The newspaper added:
The staffer described the process of reviewing the site as "a work in progress, but we can't have information which contradicts the actions we have taken in the last two months," adding that Pruitt’s aides had "found a number of instances of that so far" while surveying the site.