White House Considered Ignoring Federal Studies on Climate Change

According to a memo obtained by The Washington Post, White House officials weighed whether to simply “ignore” federally-funded studies about climate change—or develop “a coherent, fact-based message about climate science.” The options were presented in a September 2016 memo drafted by Michael Catanzaro, President Trump’s then-special assistant for domestic energy and environmental policy. The document included three options for how the White House could address climate science and federally-funded studies on human-driven climate change: develop a “red team/blue team” to “highlight uncertainties in climate science,” formally review the studies under the Administrative Procedure Act, or simply ignoring them and not “characterize or question...the science being conducted by Federal agencies and outside entities.” Catanzaro had a meeting with White House and agency officials days later, and they have since “largely ignored the findings of U.S. government researchers” in practice, according to the newspaper.