— ThinkProgress (@thinkprogress) May 28, 2019
Think Progress notes a bit of bad timing by Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson. He appeared on Fox News and lauded Donald Trump’s attack on environmental regulation as record flood waters inundate land along the Arkansas River.
Notes the article:
Last year’s National Climate Assessment released by Trump’s own government warned that climate change will cause more flooding in certain areas, including the southeast region of the United States where Arkansas is located. Increased rainfall events are already causing increased inland flooding the assessment stated.
“Extreme rainfall events have increased in frequency and intensity in the Southeast, and there is high confidence they will continue to increase in the future,” it read.
Neither Trump nor Hutchinson seemed bothered by the potential fallout from environmental deregulation.
Hutchinson appeared on Fox to comment on flooding. But …
Hutchinson — who has a long record of opposing almost all climate and environmental protections — was first asked whether President Donald Trump deserves credit for his state’s improving economy. He responded that it was Trump’s environmental deregulation that has helped fuel Arkansas’ growth.
“There has been a totally different approach to the economy under President Trump: the regulations have been reduced,” Hutchinson explained approvingly. “He’s given more authority back to the states, in terms of environmental regulations. We can protect our environment. It doesn’t have to all come from Washington.”
The algae in the Buffalo River tells a slightly different story, of course. As do emission-belching power plants.
Will Hutchinson join Trump’s hardening position on climate change, a position built on simply denying science? That seems to be the winning political position in Arkansas — stand with Trump no matter how bodacious the lie. Writes the New York Times today about Trump (and presumably his fans):
In the next few months, the White House will complete the rollback of the most significant federal effort to curb greenhouse-gas emissions, initiated during the Obama administration. It will expand its efforts to impose Mr. Trump’s hard-line views on other nations, building on his retreat from the Paris accord and his recent refusal to sign a communiqué to protect the rapidly melting Arctic region unless it was stripped of any references to climate change.
And, in what could be Mr. Trump’s most consequential action yet, his administration will seek to undermine the very science on which climate change policy rests.
Mr. Trump is less an ideologue than an armchair naysayer about climate change, according to people who know him. He came into office viewing agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency as bastions of what he calls the “deep state,” and his contempt for their past work on the issue is an animating factor in trying to force them to abandon key aspects of the methodology they use to try to understand the causes and consequences of a dangerously warming planet.
As a result, parts of the federal government will no longer fulfill what scientists say is one of the most urgent jobs of climate science studies: reporting on the future effects of a rapidly warming planet and presenting a picture of what the earth could look like by the end of the century if the global economy continues to emit heat-trapping carbon dioxide pollution from burning fossil fuels.
And Asa would say, what? It’s good for jobs?