The Environmental Protection Agency under Donald Trump promised to clean up the most polluted sites in the U.S. Remember former administrator Scott Pruitt? He loved to go on and on about doing this when he wasn’t grifting. Well, turns out the EPA is doing a worse job under this dumb-ass president than it has in previous years.
The number of Superfund sites that didn’t begin cleanup last year due to a lack of funds is the highest it’s been in at least 15 tears. The administration released Superfund information at the end of last year, and the AP conducted an analysis revealing how little the administration has done to clean up waste sites. In the decade before Trump was president, there were an average of about 17 sites that weren’t funded for cleanup. This year saw 34 sites go without funding.
This is just fresh coming from the Trump administration. In the past, the president has said, “We have done tremendous work on Superfunds.” He loves to brag about all the work the EPA has done to clean up these toxic sites, and Pruitt even went so far as to create a Superfund Task Force in 2017 to prioritize this work.
This work requires a lot of money. I’m talking millions of dollars worth of money. And that’s per site. Cleaning up lead and dioxins isn’t cheap work, especially when done right. Now, sites in 18 states, including New York and Wisconsin, as well as Puerto Rico, are entering the new year without any federal funding to remediate their problems. The Trump administration has repeatedly proposed cuts to EPA funding, including the Superfund program. Congress hasn’t made those cuts, though it hasn’t increased funding for clean up either. That makes it hard to add any new sites to the cleanup list.
Cleaning up these sites isn’t just necessary for the well-being of the surrounding environment. Doing so protects public health and human lives. Trump, however, is too preoccupied with trying to be a tough guy to care about the people he was elected to protect.