Thursday, January 26, 2017 by JD Heyes
Our new president continues to take aim at the vast, choking and expensive federal bureaucracy with new executive actions aimed at downsizing or neutering many agencies. And now, we can add the Environmental Protection Agency to the list.
The EPA, which was essentially weaponized against American businesses, corporations and industries during the Obama administration, has been handed orders by President Donald J. Trump to stop using social media and to end any attempts to sign new contracts.
As reported by Zero Hedge, the administration placed a media blackout on the agency, prohibiting the use of social media or having any contact with the media. Presumably, this means that any EPA official who leaks information to the media – which you know is going to happen – will run foul of the new order. It’s not clear what will happen to violators if they are identified.
Emails that agency chiefs sent to staff since Trump’s inauguration on Friday, which were reviewed by The Associated Press, provided details on specific behaviors that are no longer allowed: The issuing of press releases, blog updates and posts to the EPA’s social media accounts.
On Monday, meanwhile, The Hill, citing multiple reports, said the agency’s grants have been frozen, with agency employees barred even from discussing the matter (which means that the order has already been violated).
The grants fund a number of things including clean-up of toxic sites, the monitoring of air quality, water testing and other functions of the agency that are generally too few and far between to really be of much value. Even when the EPA knew about poor water quality, as was the case in Flint, Michigan, recently, it did nothing to intervene, claiming that the state agency should have done so.
Myron Ebell, who was in charge of the EPA transition for Trump, confirmed the “basics of the freeze” to Pro Publica Monday evening.
“They’re trying to freeze things to make sure nothing happens they don’t want to have happen, so any regulations going forward, contracts, grants, hires, they want to make sure to look at them first,” Ebell said.
It is not clear whether the freeze is indefinite or if it is only a temporary way to sort of slow things down at the agency until Scott Pruitt, Trump’s nominee to run the EPA, is confirmed by the Senate – a process which is taking far longer, thanks to Democratic delays, than it did for President Obama in 2009.
Ebell said that while the current order may be “a little wider” than previous ones, earlier administrations have issued similar instructions.
“Right now we are in a holding pattern. The new EPA administration has asked that all contract and grant awards be temporarily suspended, effective immediately. Until we receive further clarification, this includes task orders and work assignments,” one EPA contracting officer wrote in a message to a storm water management employee, Pro Publica reported.
Whatever the scope of the order, it is consistent with other executive actions that Trump has taken since he was sworn in. He’s also implemented a federal hiring freeze, and has instructed agencies tied to Obamacare to grant wide and generous waivers.
Also, Trump has silenced the EPA’s bogus proclamations on the climate change hoax. The agency was one of the primary tools used by Obama to push through a radical Left-wing environmental agenda that had nothing to do with sound “settled” science, but was really aimed at stifling American businesses and destroying jobs. (RELATED: What has Trump done to dismantle the bureaucracy today? Find out at BigGovernment.news)
“The EPA has been a constant purveyor of quack science propaganda pretending to be rooted in facts. It’s not only a great idea to muzzle this out-of-control corrupt agency; I think it’s time America shuttered the entire EPA and sent its employees packing,” said Natural News founder/editor Mike Adams, the Health Ranger. “The EPA has done absolutely nothing to protect the American people in recent memory, and exists solely to serve the interests of corporate chemical pushers (such as pesticide companies), while pushing Al Gore’s wholly discredited climate change bunk.”
Follow more news about the EPA’s fake science at FakeScience.news.