President Donald Trump and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler’s environmental agenda — massive cuts to the EPA budget, short-circuited environmental reviews, reduced enforcement, weaker rules and scores of rollbacks of environmental protections — is shamelessly out of step with overwhelming public support for protecting the environment. The main strategy for selling this toxic stew has been to highlight its “benefits” and downplay its harms. Not content with that, the Trump administration is also working on new tricks to cook the books and hide the benefits of environmental protections.
It is easy to understand why the administration wouldn’t be eager to call attention to the facts. Their proposed budget cuts of $2.4 billion would cripple the EPA, but barely make a dent in federal outlays, reducing them by .005 percent (1/20,000th), about $8 for each of our nation’s people. Similarly, the public health benefits of EPA regulations, hundreds of billions, or even trillions of dollars are between five and 30 times their costs. And while regulatory costs affect corporate earnings, benefits improve people’s lives, preventing hundreds of thousands of premature deaths, heart attacks and emergency room visits. It’s a small wonder that the EPA wants to make public health benefits disappear. …
Island Press is thrilled to announce that we are partnering with built environment platform TICCO on a new season of their Shaping Cities podcast. Over the course of the season, TICCO will feature Island Press authors, Urban Resilience Project contributors, and other innovators who are dedicated to making our cities sustainable and habitable long into the future.
In the season premier, TICCO’s Erik Felix sits down with Larisa Ortiz, a nationally recognized urban planner, consultant, and URP contributor specializing in commercial district revitalization. In her interview, Larisa dives into her work with commercial districts, the future of retail, and how businesses are adapting in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Check out our entire series of podcasts on urban resilience topics HERE.
As the planet heats up, water crises are on the rise.
The specifics vary by place — flooding in the Gulf South; water shortages in California; utility shut-offs in Detroit. But one thing is true almost everywhere: Pervasive inequity means that water crises hit low-income communities and people of color first and worst.
This is also true: When those communities come together to share expertise and build solidarity, real change is possible — from neighborhoods on the front lines of climate change to the halls of Congress. …