Articles written by michael biesecker

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Trump wildlife protection board stuffed with trophy hunters

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new U.S. advisory board created to help rewrite federal rules for importing the heads and hides of African elephants, lions and rhinos is stacked with trophy hunters, including some members with direct ties to President Donald T...

 

Zinke defends plan to raise park fees amid flap over travel

WASHINGTON (AP) — Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke bristled Tuesday under questioning by Democrats about his travel spending as the Trump administration seeks deep cuts to conservation programs and fee increases at national parks. Zinke testified b...

 

What swamp? Lobbyists get ethics waivers to work for Trump

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump and his appointees have stocked federal agencies with ex-lobbyists and corporate lawyers who now help regulate the very industries from which they previously collected paychecks, despite Trump's promises as a...

 

Trump administration once again lifts elephant trophy ban

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration has quietly decided once again to allow Americans to import the body parts of African elephants shot for sport, despite presidential tweets decrying the practice as a "horror show." President Donald Trump p...

 

Trump EPA moves to roll back more clean air and water rules

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration said Thursday it is rewriting Obama-era rules governing pollution from oil and gas operations and coal ash dumps, moves that opponents say will significantly weaken protections for human health and the e...

 

Shooting suspect was on school rifle team that got NRA grant

The troubled teen authorities say killed 17 people at a Florida high school excelled in an air-rifle marksmanship program supported by a grant from the National Rifle Association Foundation, part of a multimillion-dollar effort by the gun group to su...

 

EPA chief says he flies first class due to security concerns

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Environmental Protection Agency has broken months of silence about his frequent premium-class flights at taxpayer expense, saying he needs to fly first class because of unpleasant interactions with other t...

 

Trump: Gut funding for climate science, boost fossil fuels

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is targeting federal funding for studying and tracking climate change while boosting the continued burning of planet-warming fossil fuels. The White House's 2019 spending plan seeks to reduce or eliminate c...

 

AP FACT CHECK: Climate science undercuts EPA chief's view

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Environmental Protection Agency is again understating the threat posed by climate change, this time by suggesting that global warming may be a good thing for humanity. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has championed th...

 

GOP lawmakers take aim at WHO agency over Roundup ingredient

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican lawmakers are threatening to cut off U.S. funding for the World Health Organization's cancer research program over its finding that the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup is probably carcinogenic to humans. H...

 

Emails: Pruitt monitored changes to EPA webpages on climate

WASHINGTON (AP) — Newly released emails show Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt personally monitored efforts last year to excise much of the information about climate change from the agency's website, especially President O...

 

EPA ends clean air policy opposed by fossil fuel interests

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Trump administration is doing away with a decades-old air emissions policy opposed by fossil fuel companies, a move that environmental groups say will result in more pollution. The Environmental Protection Agency issued n...

 

EPA official speaks on risk of climate change to toxic sites

WASHINGTON (AP) — A top manager who supervises the Environmental Protection Agency program responsible for cleaning up the nation's most contaminated properties and waterways told Congress on Thursday that the government needs to plan for the o...

 

EPA official: government must plan for climate change

WASHINGTON (AP) — A top manager who supervises the Environmental Protection Agency program responsible for cleaning up the nation's most contaminated properties and waterways told Congress on Thursday that the government needs to plan for the o...

 

Auto efficiency makes gains, but falls short of targets

WASHINGTON (AP) — New government data shows gas mileage for 2016 model year light-duty vehicles sold in the United States made smaller than expected gains in fuel economy over the last year, though new cars are generally sipping less gas and spewing...

 

US review shows pesticides harm threatened salmon, whales

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal scientists have determined that a family of widely used pesticides poses a threat to dozens of endangered and threatened species, including Pacific salmon, Atlantic sturgeon and Puget Sound orcas. The National Marine F...

 

Coal baron's 'action plan' became Trump policy initiatives

WASHINGTON (AP) — In the early days of the Trump administration, the head of one of America's largest coal companies sent a four-page "action plan" to the White House calling for rollbacks of Obama-era environmental and mine safety regulations. "We h...

 

Superfund work touted by Trump EPA was completed years ago

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency is touting cleanups at seven of the nation's most polluted places as a signature accomplishment in the Trump administration's effort to reduce the number of Superfund sites, even though records s...

 

Watchdog to investigate flood risks to Superfund sites

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal government watchdog agency will investigate the threats from flooding and other natural disasters to the nation's most polluted places. The Government Accountability Office told members of Congress it was assigning i...

 

EPA says Superfund Task Force left behind little paper trail

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency says an internal task force appointed to revamp how the nation's most polluted sites are cleaned up generated no record of its deliberations. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt in May announced the cr...

 

EPA chief jets to Morocco to help promote fossil fuel use

WASHINGTON (AP) — The head of the Environmental Protection Agency flew to Morocco this week to help encourage the North African kingdom to import liquefied natural gas from the United States, prompting Democrats and advocacy groups to question w...

 

EPA chief defends spending on travel and soundproof booth

WASHINGTON (AP) — Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt on Thursday defended his frequent taxpayer-funded travel and his purchase of a custom soundproof communications booth for his office, saying both were justified. Pruitt made his f...

 

AP EXCLUSIVE: Big contracts, no storm tarps for Puerto Rico

WASHINGTON (AP) — After Hurricane Maria damaged tens of thousands of homes in Puerto Rico, a newly created Florida company with an unproven record won more than $30 million in contracts from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide emergenc...

 

EPA hears worries about climate in heart of coal country

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — After more than four decades as a coal miner, Stanley Sturgill ambled into an ornate room at West Virginia's state capitol Tuesday to deliver a stark message to the Trump administration: Climate change is real and c...

 

US first loosened limits on lion trophies, then elephants

WASHINGTON (AP) — One month before the Trump administration sparked outrage by reversing a ban on trophies from threatened African elephants, federal officials quietly loosened restrictions on the importation of heads and hides of lions shot for s...

 

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