NEW FLIGHT OF THE BUMBLEBEE Under pressure from an NRDC lawsuit, the Trump Administration has granted federal protections for the rusty patched bumblebee. This essential native pollinator was added to the endangered species list by the Obama Administration, but the Trump Interior Department proceeded to illegally “freeze” the listing. The agency’s reversal is a huge win for the bee —which has vanished from more than 90 percent of its historic range — and for our larger campaign to save bees from toxic pesticides and other threats.
JUSTICE PREVAILS IN FLINT After a yearlong legal battle, residents of Flint, Michigan, will finally get their water pipes replaced. In a big victory for citizen power, a federal judge approved a settlement that requires the state of Michigan to spend nearly $100 million to get lead and galvanized steel pipes out of the ground and help resolve the city’s drinking water crisis. NRDC and the ACLU of Michigan filed the citizen suit on behalf of residents after officials refused to act.
INDIAN POINT TO CLOSE New York’s aging, problem-plagued Indian Point nuclear power plant will close by April 2021, according to an agreement announced by Governor Andrew Cuomo — welcome news for some 20 million people who live within 50 miles of its reactors. The governor has committed to replacing the plant’s power with clean and renewable energy, with no net increase in climatedestroying carbon emissions. NRDC has long opposed relicensing the plant, which has a history of operational, safety and environmental troubles.
C OV E R A RT I C L E
Trump Ignites Major Climate Fight P resident Trump has launched a full-scale assault on President Obama’s legacy of climate action, setting the stage for a rolling series of pitched legal battles between his administration and NRDC as we fight in federal court to defend years of hardwon climate progress. Trump’s actions include a sweeping executive order to start dismantling landmark victories, in a stunning rebuke of science that comes on the heels of polls showing overwhelming public opposition to such climate policy rollbacks. The centerpiece of what David Doniger, director of NRDC’s Climate and Clean Air program, calls President Trump’s “climate destruction plan” is the directive that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency begin the lengthy legal process of unraveling President Obama’s historic
Clean Power Plan. Obama’s plan would cut carbon emissions from U.S. power plants by nearly a third and would be the biggest step our nation has yet taken to meet our carbon reduction targets under the Paris climate agreement. Trump’s executive order also abandons the moratorium imposed by Obama on new coal mining leases on public lands. Within days of the order being issued, NRDC went to court to challenge the president’s attack on the Clean Power Plan, and we are prepared to file lawsuits to protect wildlands under the most immediate threat from the coal industry, such as the gateway to Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park. NRDC is likewise gearing up to defend Obamaera clean car standards against an expected rollback attempt by Trump; those standards would ultimately reduce climate pollution by five billion tons, the equivalent of taking 53
million cars off the road for a year. “Polls show that 60 to 80 percent of Americans oppose these reversals,” says Doniger. “Yet inside the echo chamber of the Trump Administration, political appointees are even prohibiting certain agencies from using the words climate change. We will not stand by while a handful of climate deniers derail the progress we’ve made and send us careening toward climate chaos.”
S P E C I A L R E P O RT
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Keystone XL Revived; NRDC Fires Back in Court pipeline, starting in 2008, and eventually persuaded In yet another attack on our planet’s climate and the Obama Administration to deny a cross-border President Obama’s legacy, the Trump Administration permit for the project. But President Trump is trying has approved a permit that would allow the Keystone to bring the energy boondoggle XL pipeline to move forward. roaring back to life. NRDC immediately hit back Keystone XL would transport with a federal lawsuit aimed at up to 830,000 barrels of dirty tar preventing construction of the sands oil through the American climate-wrecking pipeline. “This heartland every day. It would cross all-risk, no-reward pipeline has more than 1,000 rivers, lakes and never been in America’s national streams and come within a mile interest,” says Anthony Swift, of 2,500 wells, threatening water director of NRDC’s Canada Ruptured tar sands pipeline, Michigan, 2010. supplies, farms, sacred tribal lands Project. “We’ll fight in court for as and communities. From the strip long as it takes to slam the door mine to the gas tank, tar sands crude generates nearly on Keystone XL.” Millions of Americans — including twice as much carbon pollution as conventional crude. NRDC Members — united in opposition to the risky
MOUNTAIN © TED ZUKOSKI/EARTHJUSTICE; BEE © DAN MULLEN; PIPE © NATIONAL TRANSPORTATION SAFETY BOARD
G O O D N EWS
Published on Jun 14, 2017
All of the environmental projects and victories described in Nature’s Voice are made possible through the generous support of Members like y...