Through legislation like the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act, the EPA has ensured that Americans live in a relatively healthy environment. Thanks to the EPA’s work, from 1970 to 2015, national emissions of pollutants like lead, carbon monoxide, and nitrogen dioxide have declined by an average of 70 percent. These and more changes meant 160,000 people in the US didn’t die prematurely due to air pollution in 2010 alone. Since the 1980s, the EPA has also worked with local authorities to clean up some of the most polluted sites in the US, from landfills that caught fire to radioactive waste housed close to residential areas. … [Read more...] about Trump’s budget is very bad news for science research
Sustainable energy resources
Stars begin their lives when hydrogen fusion ignites in their dense, hot cores. Once that process starts, it's game on. The gravitational pull of all the mass of the star tries to squeeze it down into a tiny point, but the energy released by fusion pushes outward, creating a delicate balance that can persist for millions or even trillions of years. … [Read more...] about How do stars die?
But all that is now in peril. Trump’s pick for the head of the Environmental Protection Agency is Scott Pruitt, a man who’s questioned the scientific evidence of human-made climate change. His transition team has sent an intimidating questionnaire to the Department of Energy asking for the names of employees who worked on climate policy (the Energy Department refused and Trump’s team later disavowed the questionnaire). He has picked Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. And he has vowed to dismantle one of Obama’s signature environmental policies in his first 100 days in office. … [Read more...] about It’s judges, not Trump, who will decide Obama’s environmental legacy