The EPA Can Now Deny Funds To Scientists And Universities If It Has To Do With Climate Change
If it wasn’t bad enough that Donald Trump doesn’t listen to scientists about climate change, now the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will have the power to deny funding to scientists and universities if their request mentions the words climate change.
The Washington Post reported on Monday that the EPA has given veto power over grants and awards to John Konkus, who goes by the title of Deputy Associate Administrator for Public Affairs.
Now, the hundreds of millions of dollars that the EPA gives out in fundings has to be run by Konkus who has the last word on whether the funding goes through.
According to the report, Konkus has told staffers that if he sees “the double C-word” he would not be sending out funds.
Konkus has already canceled about $2 million in funds to universities and nonprofits, the report states.
EPA spokesperson Liz Bowman stated in an email that Konkus’ decisions are “to ensure funding is in line with the Agency’s mission and policy priorities. We review grants to see if they are providing tangible results to the American people.”
Christine Todd Whitman, former EPA head, criticised the role of Konkus, saying, “We didn’t do a political screening on every grant, because many of them were based on science, and political appointees don’t have that kind of background.”