With a new administration occupying the White House, environmental regulations — specifically pollution and carbon emission — are being rolled back from prior years. More specifically, the Trump Administration is rolling back emission and fuel economy standards for the automobile industry in the U.S. The administration’s cited justification for this change is that higher environmental standards on the industry hurt business growth and that carbon emissions are not a key contributor to global warming. Although the latter reason is continuously disproven by the scientific community, it is the new federal policy that standards are lower on car manufacturers. Not every state agrees with or chooses to follow the new standards, so they create their own: “California can write its own standards because of a longstanding waiver granted under the Clean Air Act.” California has recently instituted their own standards that are much more strict than those at the federal level, and “[t]welve other states, including New York and Pennsylvania, as well as Washington, D.C., follow California’s standards, a coalition that covers more than 130 million residents and more than a third of the vehicle market in the United States.” Most of the states in the U.S. are choosing to deregulate industries that hurt the environment, while California and a couple more are standing up to the President’s wants.
I am from the Bay Area, and there are noticeable changes to places due to rising waters and global warming. My school is also very environmentally conscious, we are trying to become as close to a zero waste school as possible, so I have always felt passionate about the environment and trying to help/save it. The time is now. There is very little time left before Earth reaches the point of no return on the climate. Change and reform needs to be implemented now.
Because California’s actions are protected by law, there is not much to be changed. That being said, I want to lead some workshops at my school that teach students how to call their representatives and senators to show support for the opposition and ask for further regulation on the automobile industry. There are also a slew of other environmental issues that I could help support this way.
The most important thing is to be active about it! Go to a protest, educate your friends, call a representative. There are dozens of things you can do to get active and help with this issue!
Some Other Cool Environmental Websites
Tabuchi, Hiroko. “California Upholds Auto Emissions Standards, Setting Up Face-Off With Trump.” The New York Times. The New York Times, 24 Mar. 2017. Web. 15 Apr. 2017.