Donald Trump wants to reduce the budget of the EPA from €8.2 billion to€5.7 billion. That’s the intention of the current budget proposal. The blood-letting is not without consequences for EPA staff or projects that are being planned or are already in progress. According to reports in the Washington Post, the staff is to be reduced from 15,000 to 12,000 employees and more than 50 projects will be cut.
Along with climate-protection projects, the ambitious Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program may be cancelled. As part of the project, scientists want to test the endocrine effects of pesticides, chemicals, and substances that harm the environment. The U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB) is to be eliminated entirely. It is an independent agency of the U.S. government headquartered in Washington D.C. whose employees study industrial accidents.
However, funding for the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) remains untouched for the time being. Nevertheless, experts doubt that the EPA can maintain the program and its ambitious deadlines in the current circumstances.
Numerous representatives of non-governmental organizations have castigated the measures as excessive and premature. The chair of the Environmental Working Group (EWG), Fred Krupp, fears that the cuts will mean that the EPA can no longer adequately fulfill its functions.
The final budget proposal will be released in May and sent to Congress. And since Republicans control the House of Representatives and the Senate, significant changes to the plans are not expected.
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