Seth Meyers, the host of the eponymous "Late Night with Seth Meyers" on NBC said last night that President-elect Donald Trump’s skepticism with regard to global climate change theory will cause the earth irreparable harm. "One of the most dire consequences of a Donald Trump presidency may be its impact on climate change," Meyers said on his show. "And if there was any hope that Trump might soften his position on climate issues after he won, his cabinet picks tell a different story."
Meyers said that 16 of the hottest years in recorded history occurred since 2000. The hottest recorded was 2016. "So just to recap, 2016 was the hottest year ever," Meyers said, "Donald Trump won the presidency, and on top of that, the f--king Chicago Cubs won the World Series. I'm pretty sure that's three of the four horseman of the Apocalypse right there."
Trump said during his campaign that global climate change is a hoax perpetrated by China, which happens to have the worst air pollution in the world. Some climate change advocates applauded his meetings with Al Gore and actor Leonardo DiCaprio, both of whom are active environmentalists. However, Meyers said, "Trump's team moved quickly to snuff out that glimmer [of hope] by reassuring everyone that Trump still thinks climate change is totally made up."
Environmentalists are not pleased by Trump’s picks for cabinet positions. Among them are ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, and former Texas Governor Rick Perry, all of whom are associated with the fossil fuel industry. "So the climate situation may well be dire under the Trump Administration, which is why we need to keep bringing attention to it," said Meyers. "It's literally life or death. Without a strong response, we could be in for more arctic melting, extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and earthquakes."
Environmentalists are not standing pat before Trump takes office. Like allied leftists groups, which are planning mass demonstrations and “direct action” to counter Trump’s inauguration on January 20, environmentalists are getting ready to sue in court -- a favorite tactic. Natural Resources Defense Council attorney John Walke told NPR last month that if Trump tries to rescind environmental rules, his strategy will be to sue in court. "We and other citizens groups will go to court, and the courts will overturn those actions," Walke promised. In the past, Walke’s organization has had victories in concert with Democrats. For example, NRDC and former Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) examined court rulings on the Clean Air Act during the George W. Bush and Obama administrations. And other environmental groups sued to keep the Bush-era Environmental Protection Agency from relaxing regulations.
Congress can invoke the Congressional Review Act, which gives the legislative branch the power to rescind regulations within 60 working days of their enactment, if approved by the president. Therefore, any regulation enacted by President Obama 60 working days before Trump's inauguration is vulnerable to the new Republican-led Congress. Several new rules, such as limits on methane emissions from oil and gas operations, fall in that category. Another issue that will be on the table is Obama’s new ban on drilling for oil in the Arctic.
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