If the above headline seems overwrought, read the following, and then you decide:
Following Trump pledge, EPA rolls back coal rules
Chicago Tribune, 6/19/19
By Ellen Knickmeyer, Associated Press
The Trump administration on Wednesday completed one of its biggest rollbacks of environmental rules, replacing a landmark Obama-era effort that sought to wean the nation’s electrical grid off coal-fired power plants and their climate-damaging pollution.
Environmental Protection Agency chief Andrew Wheeler said coal-fired power plants remained essential to the power grid, something that opponents deny. “Americans want reliable energy that they can afford.”
President Donald Trump campaigned partly on a pledge to bring back the coal industry, which has been hit hard by competition from cheaper natural gas and renewable energy. Environmental groups pledge court challenges.
“The Trump administration’s outrageous Dirty Power Scam is a stunning giveaway to big polluters, giving dirty special interests the greenlight to choke our skies, poison our waters and worsen the climate crisis,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said in a statement.
Joseph Goffman, an EPA official under President Barack Obama, said he feared that the Trump administration was trying to set a legal precedent that the Clean Air Act gives the federal government “next to no authority to do anything” about climate-changing emissions from the country’s power grid.
The Obama rule, adopted in 2015, sought to reshape the country’s power system by encouraging utilities to rely less on dirtier-burning coal-fired power plants and more on electricity from natural gas, solar, wind and other lower or no-carbon sources.
The new Trump rule eliminates the Obama EPA’s targets that would have required states to reduce their carbon dioxide emissions.
Of course, Trump’s climate change deniers will tell you that:
- CO2 is not a greenhouse gas, or
- CO2 is a greenhouse gas, but not enough to cause climate change, or
- CO2 is a greenhouse gas, but it helps plants grow, which remove CO2, or
- CO2 increases and decreases naturally, or
- Climate change is a good thing, because everyone likes warm weather or
- Climate change is a Chinese hoax, or
- Whatever other nonsense Trump can dream up to get the vote of coal miners (who now represent only .0012 of the total U.S. labor force) and the contributions of coal mining companies.
Here is what National Geographic tells you:
Effects of global warming
The signs of global warming are everywhere, and are more complex than just climbing temperatures.
Climate change encompasses not only rising average temperatures but also extreme weather events, shifting wildlife populations and habitats, rising seas, and a range of other impacts.
All of these changes are emerging as humans continue to add heat-trapping greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere:
- Ice is melting worldwide, especially at the Earth’s poles.
- Much of this melting ice contributes to sea-level rise. Global sea levels are rising 0.13 inches a year, and is occurring at a faster rate in recent years.
- Rising temperatures are affecting wildlife and their habitats.
- Rain and snowfall have increased across the globe. Yet some regions are experiencing more severe drought, increasing the risk of wildfires, lost crops, and drinking water shortages.
- Some species—including mosquitoes, ticks, jellyfish, and crop pests—are thriving. Booming populations of bark beetles that feed on spruce and pine trees, for example, have devastated millions of forested acres in the U.S.
Other effects could take place later this century if warming continues. These include:
- Hurricanes and other storms are likely to become stronger and more frequent.
- Large parts of the U.S., for example, face a higher risk of decades-long “megadroughts” by 2100.
- Less freshwater will be available since glaciers store about 3/4 of the world’s fresh water.
- Some diseases will spread, such as mosquito-borne malaria and the 2016 resurgence of the Zika virus.
- Ecosystems will continue to change: Some species will move farther north or won’t be able to adapt and could become extinct.
This is the world Trump and the GOP are creating for your children. He and his followers don’t seem to care about your children– or presumably even theirs.
But it gets even worse:
Coal and Air Pollution
Air pollution from coal-fired power plants is linked with asthma, cancer, heart and lung ailments, neurological problems, acid rain, global warming, and other severe environmental and public health impacts.
Some of the ways Trump is killing your kids (but he, his followers and the GOP don’t care):
Human health and environmental impacts of coal combustion and post-combustion wastes
The burning of coal leads to the emission of poisonous gases with underlying health impacts and environmental problems.
In coal combustion, the carbon, sulfur, and nitrogen react with oxygen and produce their respective oxides: carbon dioxide (CO2) and carbon monoxide (CO), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and sulfur trioxide (SO3), and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and nitric oxide (NO), respectively.
The emission of these gases has been correlated with many health problems directly and indirectly, including skin, cardiovascular, brain, blood and lung diseases, and different cancers.
For example, CO enters into the bloodstream and reacts with hemoglobin and reduces the formation of oxy-hemoglobin complex by decreasing its ability for O2 transformation
Hence, the CO can alter biological functions at the cellular level and cause many abnormalities including slow reflexes, and coagulation confusion or disorders.
The CO2 emission from coal combustion, during power generation, also leads to the interaction of CO2 with particulate matter (PM 2.5), which thereby changes the air quality and leads to increased asthma attacks and other respiratory and cardiovascular diseases with underlying poor life expectancy rates.
Inhaling particulate matters may cause some dangerous diseases, including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and lung cancer.
The sulfur, in coal, oxidizes upon combustion and pollutes the air, water, and land by releasing SOx (SO2, SO3, SO32- and H2SO4).
The formation of the poisonous SO2 gas, a major pollutant in air, may accelerate the rate of diseases and decrease life expectancy.
In addition to SO2, other SOx like sulfate (SO32-) and sulfuric acid (H2SO4), damages the environment in the form of acid rain.
High exposure to SO2 causes suffocation, wheezing, coughing, and reductions in lung function by affecting mucous and cellular mucins.
SO2 gas also damages nearby flora and crops, leading to leaf injury, affecting plant growth and reducing the diversity of plant species
Moreover, acid rain (H2SO4), a hydrated product of SO3, potentially damages skin cells, destroys building material, and pervasively affects vegetation and food chain by contaminating the flora and fauna through the leaching of heavy metals.
Nitric oxide (NO2), another major pollutant with highly corrosive properties and a strong oxidizing ability, is formed as a result of coal combustion in power plants and contaminates the air.
NO2 forms the most important part of acid rain, as nitrous acid HNO2 and nitric acid HNO3, which causes a large number of skin diseases.
The entrance of SOx and NOx air pollutants into the bloodstream and cells destabilizes normal heartbeats (rhythms) and culminates in heart attacks and other heart related problems.
In addition, high levels of NO2 in the air causes a reduction in the pulmonary function in humans, asthma attacks and genetic mutations.
The ozone gas formed as a result of NO2 reaction with the volatile organic compounds in the air causes ozone-related asthma exacerbations in infants.
Particulate matter increases the concentration of free radical based reactive oxygen species (ROS) and contributes to DNA mutation, and damage of protein and lipids which may constitutively activate membrane proteins which leads to the development of some serious diseases, including lung cancer, cardiovascular diseases and reproductive disorders. T
The interaction of PM with DNA leads to the formation of DNA adducts impairing neurodevelopment, intelligence quotient (IQ) levels and intelligence in children.
So there it is folks. Trump and the GOP are killing America’s children (and you), just so he can gather a few votes and stay in power. It’s that simple.
Do you care? Are you happy to put their lives into the hands of Donald Trump and the GOP?
Make your choice and let your voice be heard.
Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
Search #monetarysovereigntyFacebook: Rodger Malcolm Mitchell
The most important problems in economics involve the excessive income/wealth/power Gaps between the richer and the poorer.
Wide Gaps negatively affect poverty, health and longevity, education, housing, law and crime, war, leadership, ownership, bigotry, supply and demand, taxation, GDP, international relations, scientific advancement, the environment, human motivation and well-being, and virtually every other issue in economics.
Implementation of The Ten Steps To Prosperity can narrow the Gaps:
Ten Steps To Prosperity:
3. Provide a monthly economic bonus to every man, woman and child in America (similar to social security for all)
The Ten Steps will grow the economy, and narrow the income/wealth/power Gap between the rich and you.