The Trump’s proposed 2018 budget cuts make it very clear that this administration has no interest in working to stop climate change. It is not shocking that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was singled out in the proposed cuts. With the biggest proposed cut (by percentage of its budget) of all federal agencies, the administration calls for a 31 percent cut, resulting in the lowest budget in over 40 years, adjusted for inflation.
The agency has not seen a budget like this this since 1976. And for an already underfunded agency, a drop from $8.2 billion to $5.7 billion will greatly impact its ability to do its job: protect the environment.
Trump’s proposed budget calls for 25 percent of the agency’s staff to be cut. It plans to eliminate specific organizations that do real good, protecting not only the environment but people’s health. Some of the programs on the chopping block are regional water quality efforts, such as the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative and the Chesapeake Bay program, that help keep our water safe and clean. And it is alarming that programs like these are in jeopardy.
The Trump administration is trying to wage a war on the EPA, slashing programs left and right. This budget proposal plans to destroy the very people and programs that work to protect us, the people who live on this planet.
But remember – this is not the end of our fight. It is one a step in a long process. This proposed budget is an opening bid that Congress will use to finalize government spending. That means your members of Congress need to hear from you, loud and clear, that these budget cuts are wrong and you expect them to stand up for people’s health and the environment.
Melany Rochester is a summer intern at Food & Water Watch.