Trump’s latest interior secretary nominee threw out report on pesticides that threaten 1,200 species

The findings were set to become public at the end of 2017. But then … they didn’t. Instead, Donald Trump inserted industry lobbyist David Bernhardt as deputy secretary of the interior. Bernhardt blocked the release of the information, announced new rules narrowing the means by which Fish and Wildlife could evaluate the data, and sent the whole study back to square one—not just wiping out years of work, but putting hundreds of species and whole ecosystems at risk of collapse

And it will come as absolutely no surprise that Dow, the company behind chlorpyrifos, donated $1 million to Trump’s shady inaugural committee.

Since Trump’s crew took over, Dow has been a regular visitor at both the EPA and the Interior Department. The changes in the way pesticides are being treated that Bernhardt put in place didn’t originate with Bernhardt. They are exactly what Dow requested.”

Trump’s latest interior secretary nominee threw out report on pesticides that threaten 1,200 species

Spraying pesticide

Spraying pesticide

It’s rare when the findings on an environmental problem are this definitive. With shifting climate conditions and all the other aspects of human activity and how it impacts the biosphere, sharp population declines can take animals and plants to the brink of extinction and still leave scientists scratching their heads over what went wrong. That’s what makes the Interior Department analysis of the pesticides malathion and chlorpyrifos such a victory—and what happened next such a horror show.

The New York Times reports that the two pesticides were found to be such a threat that they “jeopardized the continued existence” of not just a few species, but over 1,200 species, ranging from tiny fish to colorful birds to kit foxes. The pesticides are a potent cocktail for disaster, and the Fish and Wildlife Service spent years putting together an airtight case that the two had to be banned to avoid massive ecological disaster.

The findings were set to become public at the end of 2017. But then … they didn’t. Instead, Donald Trump inserted industry lobbyist David Bernhardt as deputy secretary of the interior. Bernhardt blocked the release of the information, announced new rules narrowing the means by which Fish and Wildlife could evaluate the data, and sent the whole study back to square one—not just wiping out years of work, but putting hundreds of species and whole ecosystems at risk of collapse.

For his work in assisting the pesticide industry, Bernhardt is now on track for a promotion. He is Trump’s new nominee to be the next secretary of the interior, and his confirmation hearing is coming up on Thursday. Bernhardt would replace Ryan Zinke, who abruptly left his position after a series of scandals. It may not seem possible, but Bernhardt is worse. As the Natural Resources Defense Council explains, this isn’t Bernhardt’s first go-round in Washington. He’s a top predator in the lobbyist swamp, having spent more than 20 years on every aspect of ruining public lands from opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refugee to oil drilling, to putting snowmobiles in Yellowstone National Park.

And it will come as absolutely no surprise that Dow, the company behind chlorpyrifos, donated $1 million to Trump’s shady inaugural committee.

Since Trump’s crew took over, Dow has been a regular visitor at both the EPA and the Interior Department. The changes in the way pesticides are being treated that Bernhardt put in place didn’t originate with Bernhardt. They are exactly what Dow requested.

Dow and other pesticide manufacturers were aware of the study when Trump came into office. They followed up their fat contributions with letters to Zinke at Interior, Scott Pruitt at EPA, and Wilbur Ross at Commerce, asking all of them to “set aside” the findings. Zinke was still interior secretary when the regulations were turned back, but it was Bernhardt who put his name to the policy changes and tossed a study that would have dealt with a massive ecological threat that will now continue for years.

Since taking office, Trump has made hundreds of vague and unsupported statements about how America’s water was “cleaner than ever” and how the country had “moved to the top of the charts” on the environment. Trump continues to produce these nonsensical statements, pulled from the so-so-clean streams of his nether regions, even as he lifts bans on pollution from fracking, allows mines to fill streams and rivers with waste, and leaves a rapidly ticking time bomb of pesticides in place.


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[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

Thank you for this information, Mark. It is a pi …Thank you for this information, Mark.  It is a pity that it will probably never see the light of day……  And yes, it is unbelievable that this Bernhardt could be worse than Zinke.

[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

Unbelievable?? Where have you been since 2016. T Unbelievable?? Where have you been since 2016. The political appointees have been exactly that. The cabinet is basically a bunch of pompous preening figureheads as mini mes to trump. The real damage is being done by the support staff appointed for their abilities. Mostly from the regulated industries.

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[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

Stand back people! There is MONEY to be made fro Stand back people! There is MONEY to be made from people’s cancer! Let us get our priorities straight here!

/s

[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

These are the people who argue agency rules can’ These are the people who argue agency rules can’t supersede court decisions (Chevron defense,) they just keep digging themselves in deeper, CropLife was the defendant in this case brought by the CBD

[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

well, this makes me sick. They are just going to well, this makes me sick. They are just going to lay waste to the world and roll back anything and everything good ever done in the USA. How can these people live with themselves knowing they are doing this?! I guess we will have no insects nor animals and only poisonous plants that give people cancer and that they what? potentate by hand themselves? because Bess will be gone! they must not care if humans die out in 50 years as long as they are dead who the hell cares what happens after they are dead and gone! Its just one big debacle after another with these people and I call them that loosely. We should be calling them monsters!

 

They all believe there is a magic Planet B they They all believe there is a magic Planet B they will be magically transported to where all is good and they can be wealthy, wealthy, wealthy!

The easy math of No-Biosphere=No Economy=No $$$ seems to be beyond some peoples ability to understand.

[

But that is all in the future. Today, there are But that is all in the future.  Today, there are profits to be made.

   Apparently “pay-to-play” has now become recognized as the surest method of getting to the front-of-the-line with the Trump regime. Dow Chemicals CEO Andrew N. Liveris didn’t have long to wait for his turn to take control of his purchase of a powerful government institutional lever —  The EPA.

When Donald Trump put a PetroChemical/fracking industry shill, Scott Pruitt, in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency it was only the beginning of the pay-for-play deal making process that would ensure “stakeholders” got their monies worth.

Pruitt’s Task force requiring all EPA activities go through his newly task force so that “stakeholders” (the polluting corporations) have a chance to “review” any and all regulations

Pruitt’s new procedures:

   As a first step, by May 15, 2017, the Offices of Air and Radiation Land and Emergency Management; Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention; Water, Environmental Information; Congressional and Intergovernmental Relations; and Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization should provide the Task Force with recommendations regarding specific rules that should be considered for repeal, replacement, or modification.

The corporate “stakeholders” must give their OK before any branch of the EPA can make a move:

  While we intend to do some general outreach regarding this effort, I would like the recommendations from those [EPA] offices to be informed by consultation with their particular stakeholders

— never mind a few preventable deaths when weighed against corporate “freedoms’

Actually the GOP / Trump is a lot worse than mere play-to- play;

The Petro/Chemcal industrialist now write the laws that the GOP politicians are too fucking stupid to write themselves — (likely gerrymandered inbreeding has worsened and taken its toll on the GOP)

  Chemical lobby set to gut U.S. toxic chemical regulations

  one excerpt:

   A reporter from the San Francisco Chronicle discovered that a Microsoft Word draft of the new Federal regulations soon on its way to congress was authored by the American Chemistry Council. The Lobbying firm has denied they wrote the Bill. Further investigation by IT experts proved that denial to be untrue.

[…]

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[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

“The corporate “stakeholders” must give their O

“The corporate “stakeholders” must give their OK before any branch of the EPA can make a move’’

You and I are not `stakeholders’. We are merely `consumers’.

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[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

Yet another of a thousand reasons to vote Republ Yet another of a thousand reasons to vote Republicans out. Fight to get Mueller report but it is much less important at this point than things like this. Demand action on keeping Russia and anyone else out of the election interference business and make Republicans vote for that or against it as the likely will.

[new] HIDDEN COMMENT

Infuriating. Disgusting. Deplorable. Infuriating. Disgusting. Deplorable.

….man, when will we get some GOOD news?

The planet is dying and fake president is helping to speed up the process. Hope he rots in hell. And soon.

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