The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday brought back its climate change website—a resource the former Trump administration had yanked.
“Climate facts are back on EPA’s website where they should be,” newly confirmed EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement Thursday.
“Considering the urgency of this crisis, it’s critical that Americans have access to information and resources so that we can all play a role in protecting our environment, our health, and vulnerable communities,” Regan continued. “Trustworthy, science-based information is at the foundation of strong, achievable solutions.”
New information on climate science and the crisis’ impacts will soon be added to the website, the statement added.
In April of 2017 the Trump administration, with Scott Pruitt then at the helm of the EPA, rendered the agency’s climate change site basically useless, with readers being redirected to a page that said, “This page is being updated.” Any pretense of ongoing or pending updates, however, was dropped in 2018. The moves were seen as on-brand for an administration carrying out a war on science and pushing forth pro-fossil fuel policies.
The relaunching of the site was welcomed by the Union of Concerned Scientists, who said it was “back and better than ever!”
“The EPA is restoring science and reinstating its climate website, making it a priority as @EPAMichaelRegan leads the way in transitioning our nation to a clean energy economy,” the group tweeted.
After 4 years of climate denial, the @EPA is restoring science at the agency! Step one: reinstating its climate website. We are so grateful for an Administration that will #ActOnClimate. #BuildBackBetter https://t.co/ur718fvk9W— AFGE Local 704 (@704afge) March 18, 2021
Progressive advocacy group Environment America said the “relaunch is a strong signal that the Biden administration will restore the role of science in protecting our communities and public health.”
The move was also welcomed by climate action advocate and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.
“For the first time in 4 years, the @EPA is providing information on climate change through its website. The public now has access to data and science about this existential threat. I am glad to see the federal government back in the fight for our future,” Inslee tweeted.
A similar message was fired off by Regan, who tweeted: “Climate change impacts all of us. You deserve access to science and data so we can find solutions together.”
Regan, who’d been serving as the top environmental official in North Carolina, was confirmed as EPA administrator last week.
Donna Chavis, senior fossil fuel campaigner for Friends of the Earth and an elder of the Lumbee Nation, said at the time that “Regan and the EPA have a new opportunity to place environmental justice at the center of the agency and the United States’ approach to the climate crisis.”
Chavis also urged Regan to “take bold and visionary steps to rebuild the EPA and address the very real climate crisis we face in the U.S and globally. It is time we all do better.”