Democrats and progressive groups were appalled that President Donald Trump failed to mention climate change in his first major speech to Congress.
“I think it’s at this point just childish not to mention climate change in a world in which we’re seeing so many effects of it and one day it will be a sickening look back at the power of the fossil fuel industry over our democracy,” Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) told HuffPost after Tuesday’s address.
“In Trump’s speech I did not hear one word about climate change – the single biggest threat facing our planet,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).
His administration took major steps this week to roll back former President Barack Obama’s efforts to address the issue. Among Trump’s first acts as president were the green-lighting of two controversial oil pipelines and an executive order aimed at repealing Obama-era clean water regulations.
In his speech, the president vowed “to promote clean air and clear water.” But the environmental group the Sierra Club said Trump’s rhetoric and policies show that he “does not care about our clean air, clean water, or a changing climate threatening American communities.”
“Trump isn’t putting Americans first, he’s putting corporate polluters first,” the group’s executive director said in a statement.
Climate change advocates 350.org agreed.
It’s not just Trump that’s ignoring the growing threat of climate change, which the overwhelming majority of scientists say is real. A report from the League of Conservation Voters released last week rated the 114th U.S. House of Representatives the most anti-environmental in history.
Laura Barron-Lopez contributed reporting.