“The EPA was just directed to freeze all grants. This means that grad students and researchers funded on EPA funds are now without funds. All ongoing studies are stopped.It happened in a moment with a memo, by executive action, with zero input or oversight.It could happen to any Federal institute, including the National Science Foundation, which funds research at universities around the country — including the health insurance and living stipends of many, many students. Trump also froze all federal hiring yesterday.Please, if you can safely raise your voice, raise it loudly. Call your congresspeople, call the White House, write op-eds and articles and blog posts. This is only Day 4. Please, stand up for science and the environment. This is the emergency we were all worried about. (Share widely. I did not write this. It was copied and pasted from a scientist who wants to remain anonymous. The fear of retaliation is real.)”
A gag order on both the USDA and ESA followed quickly, which means that scientists are not allowed to communicate science. This is not normal.
In response, Badlands National Park twitter feed went rougue, in direct defiance of the order, began posting nothing but climate change facts. Those tweets have since been deleted.
Today was a bad day for the environment, but a terrible day for scientists. Meanwhile, the Republicans in the House quietly closed any investigation into the Flint water crisis.
Before now we were talking in hypotheticals, about what might happen if Trump was the president, what that might mean for science or for the environment. The reality is scarier than I imagined.
Please don’t take this likely. Call your senators or congressional representative. It is not acceptable to silence scientist, let them know we will not stand for this.