Al Gore may have thought he had productive conversation with Trump about climate change, but the president-elect's actions say otherwise.
It was quite the surprise little get together: Al Gore, climate change activist, and Donald Trump, climate change denier. And Gore thought the meeting went well, even though Trump’s actions suggests that he thinks little of Gore’s ideas about the environment.
Trump and Gore met at Trump Tower earlier this week, after which Gore said Trump was a good listener and seemed to have an open mind on the issue of global warming. But the actions don’t quite line up to that. In addition to saying in the past that climate change was a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese, Trump also just appointed a climate change denier – Scott Pruitt – as head of the Environment Protection Agency in an apparent bid to roll back Obama’s environmental policies and deep-six the United States involvement in the Paris agreement.
It’s an indication that while Obama and Gore want to hope the best for Trump, the president-elect may be merely telling them what they want to hear.
Here is what Donald Trump’s official website says about the environment.
Responsible production of America’s vast natural resources is necessary to achieve energy independence from foreign suppliers. Our energy policy should encourage investment, lower prices, and create jobs here at home. We support domestic energy production of clean coal and hydropower, as well as solar, wind, geothermal and nuclear power. And we support drilling for oil and natural gas in an environmentally responsible way. President Obama has pushed for overly restrictive EPA regulations that have cost American consumers and businesses tens of billions of dollars. Republicans have consistently voted for job creation in the energy sector through their support of the Keystone Pipeline and continued opposition to Obama’s “War on Coal.”
We are the party of America’s growers, producers, farmers, ranchers, foresters, miners, commercial fishermen, and all those who bring from the earth the crops, minerals, energy, and the bounties of our seas that are the lifeblood of our economy. Their labor and ingenuity, their determination in bad times and love of the land at all times, powers our economy, creates millions of jobs, and feeds billions of people around the world. Only a few years ago, a bipartisan consensus in government valued the role of extractive industries and rewarded their enterprise by minimizing its interference with their work. That has radically changed. We look in vain within the Democratic Party for leaders who will speak for the people of agriculture, energy and mineral production.
Abundant Harvests (Top)
Agricultural production and exports are central to the Republican agenda for jobs, growth, expanded trade, and prosperity. Because our farmers and ranchers care for the land, the United States does not depend on foreign imports for sustenance. Americans spend a smaller percentage of their income on food than any other nation. On average, one American farm produces enough food to feed 155 people. No other nation has been as generous with food aid to the needy. We have good reason to celebrate our domestic security in food.
We are the largest agricultural exporter in the world, and our exports are vital for other sectors of our economy. Those exports drive additional economic growth as each dollar of agricultural exports generates another $1.27 in business activity. That is why we remain committed to expanding trade opportunities and opening new markets for agriculture. Under a Republican president, America’s trade negotiators will insist that our global trading partners adhere to science-based standards with regard to food and health regulations. We will not tolerate the use of bogus science and scare tactics to bar our products from foreign markets, nor will we allow insufficient health and safety standards for products imported for our consumption.
We must also ensure that domestic policies do not compromise our global competitiveness through overregulation and undue interference in the marketplace. There is growing recognition that federal dairy policies, crafted during the Great Depression, are increasingly an impediment to the ability of our dairy producers to meet the expected doubling in global demand coming by 2030. We oppose the policies pushed by special interest groups seeking to stop or make more expensive our current system of safe, efficient, and humane production of meat. Congress has repeatedly had to block the current Administration’s draconian rules concerning the marketing of poultry and livestock. This regulatory impulse must be curbed, not on a case-by-case basis, but through a fundamental restructuring of the regulatory process. In the meantime, the intrusive and expensive federal mandates on food options and menu labeling should be ended as soon as possible by a Republican Congress. We oppose the mandatory labeling of genetically modified food, which has proven to be safe, healthy, and a literal life-saver for millions in the developing world.
The Democratic Administration’s sustained support for additional regulation of agriculture has directly resulted in higher costs of production for those who produce the food we eat. This federal regulatory overreach has resulted and will continue to result in higher food prices for Americans. These higher food costs are particularly challenging for those Americans struggling to make ends meet.