Scientists fear the worst under a Trump presidency

A key worry for scientists is how president-elect Donald Trump said climate change was a "hoax" orchestrated by China
A key worry for scientists is how president-elect Donald Trump said climate change was a "hoax" orchestrated by China and vowed to leave the Paris climate accord

From the fight against climate change to dwindling budgets for research, the US scientific community fears the worst under Donald Trump, seen by many as the most hostile to science of any American president in history.

Trump will be "the first anti-science president we have ever had," warned Michael Lubell, director of public affairs for the American Physical Society in Washington, in the British journal Nature.

"The consequences are going to be very, very severe."

Meanwhile, the vice president-elect, Indiana Governor Mike Pence, is an ultraconservative and a creationist who has rejected Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, the foundation of modern biology.

"There's a fear that the scientific infrastructure in the US is going to be on its knees," said Robin Bell, a geophysicist at Columbia University and incoming president-elect of the American Geophysical Union.

"Everything from funding to being able to attract the global leaders we need to do ."

A key worry is how the New York billionaire declared climate change to be "hoax" orchestrated by the Chinese, and vowed to withdraw from the Paris climate accord.

"If Trump makes good on his campaign promises and pulls out of the Paris Treaty, it is difficult to see a path forward to keeping warming below dangerous levels," said Michael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center (ESSC) at Pennsylvania State University.

Extreme weather phenomenon in 2016
Extreme weather phenomenon in 2016

Lost decade

The United States is the second largest emitter of greenhouse gasses after China.

For John Abraham, professor of engineering at University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, the election of Trump "has cost us at least a decade" in the fight against global warming.

"I study ocean warming and energy balances of the Earth," he told AFP.

"The data is staring us right in the face. We could not afford this election result.

"The only way we can avoid serious climate change is to rapidly implement Obama's work," he added.

Early in October, nearly 400 scientists including 30 Nobel laureates wrote an open letter, criticizing Trump's proposed plans to abandon global climate deals.

"A 'Parexit' would send a clear signal to the rest of the world: 'The United States does not care about the global problems of human-caused climate change,'" they wrote.

"The consequences of opting out of the global community would be severe and long-lasting—for our planet's climate and for the international credibility of the United States."

US vice president-elect, Mike Pence, is an ultraconservative and a creationist who has rejected Charles Darwin's theory of evolu
US vice president-elect, Mike Pence, is an ultraconservative and a creationist who has rejected Charles Darwin's theory of evolution

Trump 'uninformed'

"Clearly he is uninformed on many things," said Rush Holt, director of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the world's largest general scientific society and the publisher of the journal Science.

He raised concern about Trump's choice of leading climate skeptic Myron Ebell to head the transition of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the agency through which President Barack Obama set many of his tougher regulations on pollution from power plants and automobiles.

However Holt, a former lawmaker himself, cautioned that when it comes to Trump, "it's not really clear what he thinks about ," he told AFP, noting that Trump has often made contradictory statements.

For instance, Trump applied for permits to build a sea wall protecting one of his golf courses in Ireland, citing the dangers of sea level rise.

"It may well be that if it's presented to him as a matter of dollars and cents then he would think about it differently than if it is presented as a matter of domestic politics or international politics."

Perhaps the realm of space exploration—long a bipartisan source of pride among Americans—is the only area of science where Trump's support has been clear.

Answering a question from ScienceDebate.org, Trump said space exploration will promote interest in science education and bring jobs and investment to the country.

"Observation from space and exploring beyond our own space neighborhood should be priorities," he said.


Explore further

Hollande: US must respect 'irreversible' climate deal

Journal information: Nature

© 2016 AFP

Citation: Scientists fear the worst under a Trump presidency (2016, November 16) retrieved 19 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-11-scientists-worst-trump.html
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Nov 16, 2016
All publicly funded science involved in or that might leads to restraints on profit is at immediate risk. That includes environmental and climate science certainly.
This is a far broader problem than just Trump. The country is beginning single party rule at all levels and dominates the judiciary as well, and the party opposes as much or more than Trump does.

Nov 16, 2016
This guy has no conscious. The "Chinese hoax" stuff is the weirdest thing I've ever heard since a while.

Nov 16, 2016
It's should be obvious to all that nearly all republicans have a dislike of science. It's too logical of a process for them. It's just a known problem in their DNA and the subsequent mind set. Don't expect much from the USA.


Nov 16, 2016
Grammatical errors in all three postings.
Inability to spell the word "conscience."
Generalizations that even one with a mediocre education would find illogical and biased.
Obvious lack of understanding of genetics.

One is forced to assume that these posters are not intellectually critical. Which is in agreement with their rather sophomoric criticisms.

Nov 16, 2016
I am not an American so I'm asking questions here rather than commenting a point of view. Surely Trump and other Republicans make their fortunes by using what science/research develops. New materials that filter down to the general public from Space Technology to faster ways of communicating via research in Quantum Physics (etc). I find it difficult to believe that any politician would deny the benefits that can be reaped from the scientific community albeit to different ends and or uses. I would appreciate some views. Thanks in advance.

Nov 24, 2016
Mimath224 Liberal democrats almost always say that republicans are against science and that none of them believe that climate change is happening. It's total bullcrap. Most republicans are for science and do understand what's happening to the climate. That isn't why Trump got elected. What republicans don't want is government in every aspect of our lives. We have gotten tired of it and are trying really hard to vote out the people that think that is their job. Yes, I am a republican and wish we would put a lot more money into science and a lot less into playing policeman for the world. I do understand climate change and the that was one thing that our soon to be ex president pressed changed about that I really approved of. I'm sorry for the coal industry but we really need to go all renewable if possible as soon as we can. The point I'm making is there are many conservative republicans out here that don't fit ANY of the democrats descriptions of us.


Nov 24, 2016
@24volts thanks for the reply @Phys1 not too sure I understand your point. Surely most Presidents have not not been scientists and, at a guess, probably devoted Roman Catholic or other Order and as such have a religious view of the world (as are many scientists). But that hasn't excluded them from making decisions for the budgets of NASA and the like. I did watch a video of Mike Pence calling Evolution a 'theory' and not 'fact' and though I am not giving an opinion here, hasn't that been the stance of many powerful/influential Americans? Are you suggesting that both elected positions will now reject ALL advice from the scientific community?


Nov 24, 2016
I am not an American so I'm asking questions here rather than commenting a point of view. Surely Trump and other Republicans make their fortunes by using what science/research develops.

The art of making money is not in exploiting the new continually - since new stuff always poses a risk (i.e. you may invest in something that doesn't come to fruition or is quickly superseded by something else before it pays off). The art of making money is to exploit something new that works exactly *once* and then trying to keep that cash cow alive as long as possible and by any means possible (fair or unfair, be it via bought politicians, laws, (hostile) takeovers of upstarts and subsequent liquidation of assets,... you name it).

Nov 24, 2016
Trump will be "the first anti-science president we have ever had"

No evidence to support this statement was presented. Not exactly "scientific."

It appears that Trump and his advisers are against politics masquerading as science, but time will tell. Candidates running for election say all kinds of ridiculous things to win votes that don't reflect how they really think.

It would be fun to dissect the pseudo-science behind advocating for regulating carbon dioxide emissions and many of the increasingly restrictive power plant emissions standards, but space is limited. Suffice it to say that withdrawing from the non-binding Paris agreement, which essentially accomplishes nothing to reduce carbon emissions and certainly won't slow or stop global warming, would have no effect except to agitate alarmists like Michael Mann into greater fits of incoherence. A sort of global warming Tourette's. Should be highly entertaining.

Nov 24, 2016
"Generalizations that even one with a mediocre education would find illogical and biased."
---------------------------------

Yes , . .. and incomplete sentences in your post, like those of Reagan.

The threat to science is real. Conservative politicians make up their own reality, and get nasty if you correct them. They are ignorant of science and the rules they cannot change or bend.

That kind of thinking is new to them. They thought they defined the world for us, but in their ignorance, have bungled everything they wanted to do.

"WMD!", anybody?

Nov 24, 2016
"A sort of global warming Tourette's. Should be highly entertaining."
----------------------------
Many of us do not find the threat of Rule by the Ignorati to be entertaining. And the destabilization of our environment, our life-support system is not a joke, it is a crime.


Nov 24, 2016
Republicans make their fortunes by using what science/research develops
@mimath
actually, i think Antialias nailed it down more clearly than anyone else could have explained it: it's more about money than anything else
(if it aint broke, don't fix it)

the best show of this threat to their money is the regurgitated rhetoric like this
It would be fun to dissect the pseudo-science behind advocating for regulating carbon dioxide emissions and many of the increasingly restrictive power plant emissions standards
instead of actually looking up the facts, the poster simply repeats the rhetoric - instead of comprehending the *known* threats, the poster regurgitates the fear based threat to the established money

common sense says: pollution bad - stop/limit it

but money talks, especially when it can play into the delusions/beliefs of others
http://journals.p....0075637

Nov 24, 2016
Science may survive after all.

Trump will sell out the hardline right in many aspects.

How many will still be followers when he wises up to reality?


Nov 24, 2016
@24volts
YOUR vicepresident is a creationist and rejects evolution.
Do you realise the damage that such a clown can do to your whole country?
Do you take the responsibility for the fatal combination of crook and clown that you voted in office ?

I take the responsibility for voting yes. Do you take responsibility for all the murders that follow in Hillary's path? She is a criminal. There has been about a dozen or so. At least Trump and his vice president aren't going to sell this country to the highest bidder like she would and has already tried to do. That women and her husband are both criminals. They should still be in jail for stealing all the furniture and other stuff from the whitehouse when he left if for no other reason. I'm religious too but I don't have a problem with science. There are far too many of you atheist types out there that think just because someone believes in God that they are stupid. I suggest you look in your mirror if you want to see stupid

Nov 24, 2016
"Do you take responsibility for all the murders that follow in Hillary's path?"
----------------------------------------

Oh, my.

Get that from Elvis himself? Was Jimmy Hoffa driving the spaceship?

Scientists have good reason to distrust someone without a decent education and/or experience in anything but self-enrichment.

He is surrounding himself with anti-science extremists. He will b e judged harshly, if there are any judges left alive after the Trump Wars.

Nov 24, 2016
"There are far too many of you atheist types out there that think just because someone believes in God that they are stupid."
--------------------------------

And do they believe in the ridiculous stories from the Age of Ignorance because they are smarter than the rest of us who are less emotionally-vulnerable to such manipulation?

Nov 24, 2016
"Trump will be the first anti-science president we have ever had,"
No evidence to support this statement was presented. Not exactly "scientific."
The quote was referenced and properly attributed, here's a link: Donald Trump's US election win stuns scientists (Nature, 2016)
Candidates running for election say all kinds of ridiculous things to win votes that don't reflect how they really think.
That's not a very good apology; it's more of yet another condemnation of the process. Well done.

Nov 24, 2016
"Nothing is worse than ignorance in action"

- Goethe

Nov 24, 2016
24volts: "I'm religious too but I don't have a problem with science. There are far too many of you atheist types out there that think just because someone believes in God that they are stupid. I suggest you look in your mirror if you want to see stupid."

It's more like a mental illness, and note that religion is a scientifically explained phenomenon, so you do have a problem with science, but even that you don't understand.

Nov 24, 2016
Donald Trump has no long term solution for anything, no long term plans for his companies let alone the future of the planet. What you are seeing is the rambling of a man unable to scheme his way out of contradictions that he espoused on a daily basis.

The most complex venture Trump ever ran was his Atlantic City casino business. Jack O'Donnell, who had a three-year run as the president of one of Trump's casinos before he quit. "All of this was contrary to the way Donald operated. He was a terrible communicator and didn't know how to sort out his thoughts on a daily basis, let alone provide long-term corporate direction."

Dec 23, 2016
Skepticism is essential to science.

http://www.americ...und.html

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