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在特朗普政府淡化全球变暖的同时,各机构也在记录气候影响

As Trump Administration Downplays Warming, Agencies Chronicle Climate Impacts
在特朗普政府淡化全球变暖的同时,各机构也在记录气候影响
3020字
2019-10-10 20:21
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火星译客

Trump administration officials tend to talk around climate change, but in official documents, they outline an unfolding crisis of extinctions, flooding and fire.

特朗普政府官员倾向于围绕气候变化展开讨论,但在官方文件中,他们概述了一场正在上演的物种灭绝、洪水和火灾危机。

Agencies under President Trump are cataloging climate impacts in the mandatory environmental reviews that precede major federal actions. They describe worsening damage to virtually every ecosystem, from entire forests down to the ocean’s smallest life forms. But officials use those same documents to minimize the connection between that damage and human-caused emissions, especially when the government is considering the impacts of fossil fuel projects, like drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

特朗普总统手下的机构在联邦政府采取重大行动之前对强制性环境审查的气候影响进行了分类。他们描述了从整个森林到海洋中最小的生命形式几乎每一个生态系统的恶化。但官员们利用这些文件,将这种损害与人为排放之间的联系最小化,尤其是在政府考虑化石燃料项目如在北极国家野生动物保护区(Arctic National Wildlife Refuge)钻探石油的影响时。

What emerges from these documents is a story of the Trump administration in microcosm. While officials tell the public not to worry about climate change, they’re running departments that warn of massive damage already unfolding. The administration masks its contribution to that damage by pointing to the small impact of individual oil wells and coal mines—a distraction, experts say, from its energy agenda’s huge cumulative impact.

从这些文件中浮现出的是特朗普政府的一个缩影。虽然官员们告诉公众不要担心气候变化,但其管理部门警告,大规模破坏已经开始显现。奥巴马政府通过指出个别油井和煤矿的微小影响,掩盖了它是造成这种损害的原因这一事实——专家们说,这种影响分散了其能源议程累积的巨大影响。

The documents show that without a broad look at government-sanctioned emissions, the Trump administration has been able to downplay the climate impacts of individual fossil fuel projects and regulatory rollbacks as too insignificant to affect global temperatures.

这些文件显示,如果不对政府批准的排放进行全面审视,特朗普政府就能够淡化个别化石燃料项目和监管倒退对气候的影响,认为它们太微不足道,无法影响全球气温。

For example, the administration has said it’s impossible to estimate an oil lease’s emissions because it depends on the drilling equipment, extra infrastructure like pipelines and the oil’s final use. Officials claim it’s impossible to know if forgoing an oil lease would lower emissions. Whatever the true drilling impact, they often say, it’s too small on its own to change global temperatures.

例如,奥巴马政府曾表示,不可能估算出石油租约的排放量,因为它取决于钻探设备、额外的管道等基础设施以及石油的最终用途。官员们声称,不可能知道放弃石油租约是否会降低排放。他们常说,不管钻探的真正影响是什么,它本身太小,不足以改变全球气温。

The consequences of these halfhearted climate analyses are still taking shape. They’re unlikely to jeopardize individual projects, experts say, but some see it as a legal vulnerability that could critically delay Trump’s agenda as the administration scrambles to lock in its actions before the 2020 election.

这些敷衍的气候分析所造成的后果初具雏形。专家们表示,它们不太可能危及单个项目,但一些人认为,这是一个法律漏洞,可能会严重拖延特朗普的议程,因为特朗普政府正忙于在2020年大选前锁定议程的行动。

If what’s missing from the documents could be problematic, then what’s included could also prove damaging in the hands of an energized climate movement.

如果这些文件中缺少的东西可能是有问题的,那么在一个充满活力的气候运动中包含的东西也可能被证明是有害的。

The Trump administration’s own environmental reviews reveal a road map to the country’s biggest climate vulnerabilities: Arctic birds could suffer “catastrophic” effects of warming. Arizona’s ponderosa pine forests face a “clear threat” from changing conditions. Shifts in where ticks and mosquitoes can infect people with diseases like plague and Zika are "already occurring.”

特朗普政府自己的环境评估揭示了美国最大的气候弱点的路线图:北极鸟类可能遭受气候变暖的“灾难性”影响。亚利桑那州的黄松森林面临着环境变化的“明显威胁”。蜱虫和蚊子可以感染鼠疫和寨卡病毒等疾病的地区正在发生变化。

Some experts read these admissions as the product of career scientists quietly working in a little-noticed arena. Others see a more insidious pattern.

一些专家认为,这些承认是职业科学家在一个不太引人注意的领域默默工作的结果。其他人则看到了一种更为阴险的模式。

In some cases, the Trump administration’s environmental reviews have framed climate change as an unstoppable global force that swamps U.S. actions: Federal greenhouse gas rules are irrelevant amid rising international emissions; the local impacts of drilling are drowned out by the sweeping ecological changes of global warming.

在某些情况下,特朗普政府的环境评估将气候变化描述为一股势不可挡的全球力量,淹没了美国的行动:在国际排放不断上升的情况下,联邦温室气体法规无关紧要;钻探对当地的影响被全球变暖带来的生态变化所淹没。

That framing is a way to protect fossil fuel interests without the extra burden of fighting science, advocates said.

支持者说,这种框架是保护化石燃料利益的一种方式,而不用承担对抗科学的额外负担。

“This is a coordinated effort across agencies,” said Rachel Cleetus, policy director of the Union of Concerned Scientists’ climate and energy program.

“这是跨部门的协调努力,”忧思科学家联盟(Union of Concerned Scientists)气候与能源项目政策主任雷切尔·克利特斯(Rachel Cleetus)说。

“The thread that’s running through it all is that basically, first: Deny, deny, deny. Then, when you have to concede the science, because it’s real and obvious and there’s such overwhelming evidence, you go to exactly this place. ... ‘There’s nothing to be done about it, so let’s just let the worst-case scenario unfold.’”

“贯穿这一切的主线基本上是,第一:否认,否认,否认。然后,当你不得不承认科学,因为它是真实而明显的,有如此压倒性的证据,你就会来到这个地方。我们对此无能为力,所以让最坏的情况发生吧。”

‘The most significant threat’

“最大的威胁”

More than 150 years ago, leprosy arrived in the Kingdom of Hawaii.

150多年前,麻风病来到夏威夷王国。

King Kamehameha V, watching an epidemic unfold, exiled anyone with the disease to the remote Kalaupapa peninsula, where sufferers would be quarantined by cliffs on one side and ocean on the other. It was more of an open-air prison than a hospital. A man who was sent there at age 13 recalled the guards telling him, “This is your last place. This is where you are going to stay, and die.”

国王卡米哈米哈五世(Kamehameha V)目睹了一场流行病的爆发,将任何有这种疾病的人流放到偏远的卡劳帕帕半岛(Kalaupapa peninsula)。与其说这是一所医院,不如说这是一所露天监狱。一名13岁时被送到这里的男子回忆说,警卫告诉他,“这是你最后的地方。”这是你要呆的地方,你会死的。”

More than 15 cemeteries and several hundred unmarked graves rest on the low-lying peninsula. The quarantine law was lifted in 1969 after a leprosy treatment was developed, though some residents chose to stay in the only home they’d ever known. About a dozen still live there today.

在这个地势低洼的半岛上,有超过15个墓地和几百个没有标记的坟墓。1969年,在麻风病治疗被开发出来后,隔离法被取消,尽管一些居民选择住在他们所知道的唯一的房子里。大约有12个现在还住在那里。

But tomorrow is an open question.

但明天是一个悬而未决的问题。

The National Park Service found in 2018 that Kalaupapa’s historic buildings and cultural sites are threatened by sea-level rise. So is the land itself; the peninsula’s sandy beaches are being “reduced or eliminated” by climate-fueled erosion, leaving sea creatures without nesting spots. Hawaii has experienced more than 5 inches of sea-level rise already, and large waves that appear without warning—so-called sneaker waves—can penetrate deep into the coastal park, the service’s environmental review found.

国家公园管理局在2018年发现,Kalaupapa的历史建筑和文化遗址受到海平面上升的威胁。土地本身也是如此;由于气候侵蚀,半岛的沙滩正在“减少或消失”,海洋生物没有筑巢的地方。夏威夷已经经历了超过5英寸的海平面上升,没有预警的大浪——所谓的运动鞋浪——可以渗透到海岸公园的深处,该服务的环境评论发现。

A more detailed analysis of climate impacts was shelved, even as Hawaii warned that federal actions “do not engage” with the state’s climate plan. The park service declined to use the 2018 review to dive deep into climate impacts—despite a 2015 draft of the review that had discussed it at length.

更详细的气候影响分析被搁置,尽管夏威夷警告说联邦行动“不参与”该州的气候计划。国家公园管理局拒绝利用2018年的审查来深入研究气候影响——尽管2015年的审查草案对其进行了详细的讨论。

That’s not unusual under the Trump administration; climate change analysis is often brief, vague or equivocal, according to a review of about 20 environmental documents prepared by several agencies under the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA.

这在特朗普政府时期并不罕见;根据几家机构根据《国家环境政策法》(National environmental Policy Act,简称NEPA)编写的约20份环境文件,气候变化分析通常是简短、模糊或模棱两可的。

For example, an environmental assessment for an oil and gas lease sale near Salt Lake City spends about 12 paragraphs explaining climate science’s uncertainties. Tucked among those dozen paragraphs is the single, crowded sentence that describes tangible climate impacts.

例如,一份关于盐湖城附近石油和天然气租赁销售的环境评估报告用了大约12个段落来解释气候科学的不确定性。在这十几个段落中,只有一个句子描述了气候的实际影响。

“Broadly stated,” the document says, climate change is bringing “more frequent and intense heat waves, longer fire seasons and more severe wildfires, degraded air quality, more heavy downpours and flooding, increased drought, greater sea-level rise, more intense storms, harm to water resources, harm to agriculture, ocean acidification, and harm to wildlife and ecosystems.”

”一般表示,“文档说,气候变化将“更频繁和强烈的热浪,长火灾季节和更严重的森林大火,退化的空气质量,更多的暴雨和洪水,干旱,增加更大的海平面上升,更强烈的风暴,对水资源、危害农业、海洋酸化,和伤害野生动物和生态系统。”

This treatment is no accident. Interior Secretary David Bernhardt has ordered page limits for environmental reviews, and the White House Council on Environmental Quality has released draft guidance that would allow agencies more flexibility to avoid comprehensive estimates of climate impacts.

这种治疗并非偶然。内政部长大卫·伯恩哈特(David Bernhardt)已经下令限制环境评估的页数,白宫环境质量委员会(White House Council on environmental Quality)也发布了指导草案,该草案将允许各机构更灵活地避免对气候影响进行全面评估。

The administration could be risking its own agenda with such cursory analyses, experts said.

专家表示,奥巴马政府进行如此草率的分析,可能是拿自己的议程冒险。

NEPA, the law that governs environmental reviews, says the government can pursue actions that agencies know could harm the environment, so long as it has taken a “hard look” at the consequences. But if courts find that a “hard look” has left something out—like a project’s climate impact, for instance—then judges can order the feds to redo the environmental review, potentially delaying actions by months or longer as the administration races to finalize its decisions before the 2020 elections.

负责管理环境审查的《国家环境政策法》(NEPA)表示,只要政府对后果进行了“认真审视”,它就可以采取机构知道可能危害环境的行动。但是,如果法院发现“严厉的审查”漏掉了一些东西——比如,一个项目对气候的影响——那么法官可以命令联邦政府重新进行环境审查,这可能会使行动推迟数月甚至更久,因为政府正在努力在2020年大选前完成最终决定。

That has already stung the Trump administration. At least 40 lawsuits against the feds hinge on environmental reviews, and courts have delayed major actions on issues like the Keystone XL pipeline and federal coal leasing due to inadequate climate analysis, according to a report by the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School.

这已经刺痛了特朗普政府。哥伦比亚大学法学院萨宾气候变化法律中心(Sabin Center for climate Change Law At Columbia Law School)的一份报告显示,至少有40起针对联邦政府的诉讼取决于环境评估,由于气候分析不足,法院已经推迟了在Keystone XL输油管道和联邦煤炭租赁等问题上的重大行动。

Political pressure to sideline climate analysis has run up against a body of science that’s getting better at forecasting damage, said David Hayes, formerly the Interior Department’s top lawyer and deputy secretary under the Clinton and Obama administrations. Those scientific advancements make it untenable for agencies to argue ignorance or uncertainty, he said.

曾在克林顿政府和奥巴马政府担任内政部首席律师和副部长的大卫·海耶斯(David Hayes)说,将气候分析工作搁置一边的政治压力,已经遇到了一系列在预测损害方面越来越擅长的科学。他说,这些科学上的进步使各机构不能再辩称无知或不确定性。

“The reality is that the administration is in a corner,” Hayes said.

海斯说:“现实情况是,奥巴马政府陷入了困境。

“It’s denied the science, but scientists that participate in the preparation of [environmental reviews] have no choice but to explain what’s really happening. And as a result ... the courts are not willing to defer to the administration, given its hypocrisy.”

“它否认了科学,但参与准备(环境评估)的科学家们别无选择,只能解释到底发生了什么。结果是……考虑到政府的虚伪,法院不愿服从。”

The tension is especially apparent in places where the climate is warming most quickly, like the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, where the environmental review does describe an ecosystem undergoing profound damage (Climatewire, Sept. 13).

这种紧张关系在气候变暖最快的地方尤其明显,比如北极国家野生动物保护区,那里的环境评估报告确实描述了一个生态系统正在遭受严重破坏(Climatewire, 9月13日)。

Climate change poses “the most significant threat” to Arctic wetlands. Melting sea ice is causing the shoreline to erode by 6 to 59 feet per year, “dramatically” altering habitat or “possibly eliminating the barrier island-lagoon systems across the entire Arctic coast.”

气候变化对北极湿地构成“最严重的威胁”。融化的海冰导致海岸线以每年6到59英尺的速度被侵蚀,“极大地”改变了栖息地,或者“可能会消除整个北极海岸的岛屿-泻湖屏障系统”。

Such habitat loss could contribute to “catastrophic” impacts on birds, putting dozens at risk of extinction. Warm waters have brought seabird die-offs, “which previously have been rare.” Caribou and reindeer have already lost more than half their wild population across the Arctic. Polar bears, seals and whales are all struggling to adapt to “pronounced changes” in sea ice happening “at rates higher than previously predicted.”

这种栖息地的丧失可能会对鸟类造成“灾难性”的影响,使数十只鸟类面临灭绝的危险。温暖的海水导致了海鸟的死亡,这在以前是罕见的。“在整个北极地区,驯鹿和驯鹿已经失去了一半以上的野生种群。北极熊、海豹和鲸鱼都在努力适应“显著变化”的海冰,这些变化的速度比之前预测的要快。

“The greatest concern for marine mammals in the reasonably foreseeable future is the continued arctic warming trend,” the environmental review says.

《环境评论》说:“在可以合理预见的未来,海洋哺乳动物最大的担忧是北极持续变暖的趋势。”

Those findings came after federal scientists complained that their work in a draft review had been changed or deleted to downplay drilling impacts, as first reported by Politico. Chad Padgett, state director for the Bureau of Land Management in Alaska, said in a call with reporters that Interior had relied on the best available science and that climate impacts would be more closely examined at a later stage.

这些发现是在联邦政府的科学家们抱怨他们在草案审查中的工作被修改或删除,以淡化钻井的影响之后出现的。美国阿拉斯加州土地管理局局长查德·帕吉特(Chad Padgett)在与记者的电话采访中表示,内政部依赖于最先进的科学技术,将在稍后阶段对气候影响进行更仔细的研究。

Other environmentalreviews convey alarming changes accelerating across the country. Experts say these kind of disclosures could possibly be used against the government in climate change lawsuits like Juliana v. United States.

其他环境评估报告显示,中国各地正在加速发生令人担忧的变化。专家表示,这种信息披露可能会被用于针对政府的气候变化诉讼,比如朱莉安娜诉美国案(Juliana v. United States)。

Massachusetts could lose 61 species of birds that are “highly vulnerable” to climate change. Sea turtle habitats are washing away “due to climate change from North Carolina to Texas.” Coastal ecosystems are approaching a “tipping point” where damage becomes “irreversible.” Adaptive forests and farms are being “outpaced” by climate change, and they will suffer further declines over the next 25 years as progress on global hunger becomes “questionable.” Climate change is even hurting children by worsening air quality, which is associated with “developmental problems” and “exacerbating asthma.”

马萨诸塞州可能会失去61种对气候变化“高度脆弱”的鸟类。由于气候变化,从北卡罗来纳州到得克萨斯州,海龟的栖息地正在被冲走。沿海生态系统正接近一个“临界点”,届时破坏将变得“不可逆转”。适应气候变化的森林和农场正在被气候变化“超越”,在未来25年里,随着全球饥饿问题的进展变得“值得怀疑”,它们的数量将进一步减少。气候变化甚至通过恶化空气质量伤害儿童,这与“发育问题”和“哮喘恶化”有关。

But advocates say the administration is pulling a trick here.

但支持者表示,奥巴马政府在这里是在玩把戏。

Forced to reckon with climate forecasts, the administration argues that fossil fuel development wouldn’t cause anywhere near the damage that global warming will. By a sleight of hand, advocates say, the administration’s climate denial morphs into a defense of oil drilling based on climate science.

在被迫考虑气候预测的情况下,奥巴马政府辩称,化石燃料开发不会造成全球变暖所造成的损害。支持者说,奥巴马政府对气候变化的否认变成了基于气候科学的对石油开采的辩护。

In environmental reviews, that looks like this: “The large magnitude of climate change effects, accompanied by increases in already high climate variability in the Arctic, are likely to overshadow smaller magnitude impacts of oil development.”

在环境评论中,它看起来是这样的:“气候变化的巨大影响,伴随着北极地区已经很高的气候变异性的增加,可能会掩盖石油开发的较小影响。”

The administration resolves this contradiction by eliding the ways its actions contribute to emissions, experts say.

专家说,政府通过忽略其行动对排放的影响来解决这一矛盾。

“It’s really shocking when their own documents recognize these really potentially catastrophic impacts of climate change,” said Cleetus of the Union of Concerned Scientists.

“当他们自己的文件承认这些气候变化潜在的灾难性影响时,真的很令人震惊,”忧思科学家联盟的Cleetus说。

“The science of what’s happening is undeniable, it’s measurable, it’s pretty clear. And yet there’s continuing to be this terrible resistance [from Trump officials] to any type of action to curtail emissions. ... So it’s a circular logic, where they say, ‘Who knows what will happen with emissions?‘—but they’re doing everything to drive up emissions.”

“发生的事情的科学性是不可否认的,是可以衡量的,非常清楚。然而,(特朗普官员)对任何形式的减排行动都继续存在这种可怕的抵御……所以这是一个循环逻辑,他们说,‘谁知道排放会发生什么?——但他们正在尽一切努力增加排放。”

Big picture vs. small slices

大图vs.小片

The Trump administration has already admitted it sees a worst-case scenario unfolding.

特朗普政府已经承认,最糟糕的情况正在发生。

Deep in the draft environmental review of the administration’s clean cars rule rollback, officials predicted atmospheric carbon would nearly double over the 21st century to levels last seen millions of years ago, when the poles were warm enough to support crocodiles (Climatewire, Aug. 7, 2018).

(2018年8月7日,《气候观察》网站)在对奥巴马政府“清洁汽车条例”进行回顾时,官员们预测,到21世纪,大气中的碳含量将增加近一倍,达到数百万年前的水平,那时两极的温度足以养活鳄鱼。

The administration actually presented two dire numbers: carbon dioxide levels with the Obama administration’s stronger rule and CO2 levels with Trump’s rollback, separated by a difference of about 0.08%. “This leads to very small differences in these [climate] effects,” the administration said of the rollback. It said cutting vehicle emissions enough to maintain a safe climate “is not currently technologically feasible or economically practicable.”

奥巴马政府实际上给出了两个可怕的数字:奥巴马政府加强管制时的二氧化碳水平和特朗普退让时的二氧化碳水平,两者之间的差距约为0.08%。“这导致这些(气候)影响的差异非常小,”奥巴马政府在谈到气候变化的影响时表示。报告说,为了维持安全的气候而削减汽车排放“目前在技术上和经济上都不可行”。

Environmentalists rage at the administration’s open admission that it’s worsening climate change. Emissions might be the Achilles’ heel of the Trump administration’s environmental reviews, some experts say.

环保人士对政府公开承认气候变化正在恶化感到愤怒。一些专家表示,排放可能是特朗普政府环境评估的致命弱点。

But such a vulnerability would probably lie in the rigor of the analyses themselves, rather than their conclusions of climate harm.

但这种脆弱性可能在于分析本身的严谨性,而非气候危害的结论。

The government is free to greenlight projects that worsen climate change, as long as it acknowledges that that is what it’s doing.

只要政府承认它正在做的事情,它就可以自由地为那些加剧气候变化的项目开绿灯。

“There is not yet any law that explicitly says, ‘The federal government cannot contribute to climate change,’” said Michael Gerrard, a Columbia Law School professor who specializes in climate law.

“目前还没有任何法律明确规定,‘联邦政府不能对气候变化做出贡献,’”哥伦比亚大学法学院专门研究气候法律的教授迈克尔·杰拉德(Michael Gerrard)说。

Trump’s agencies have mostly resisted a sweeping analysis of their policies, preferring a piecemeal approach that examines the emissions impacts from individual projects—each of which is relatively small—rather than the collective impact of all those projects, which might be big. The George W. Bush administration also favored that tactic until the Supreme Court swatted it down as part of the 2007 landmark climate case Massachusetts v. EPA, Gerrard said.

特朗普的机构大多拒绝对它们的政策进行全面分析,而倾向于采用一种零零碎碎的方法,研究单个项目(每个项目相对较小)对排放的影响,而不是所有那些可能很大的项目的总体影响。杰拉德说,乔治·w·布什(George W. Bush)政府也支持这一策略,直到最高法院将其作为2007年具有里程碑意义的马萨诸塞州诉环保署(EPA)气候案的一部分予以否决。

David Doniger, a senior attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said the administration looks for any opportunity to deem impacts too small to regulate, on greenhouse gases as well as other pollutants. He compared that approach to eating a whole pizza that’s been sliced into tiny pieces: “It still has the same number of calories.”

美国自然资源保护委员会(Natural Resources Defense Council)的高级律师多尼格(David Doniger)说,政府正在寻找任何机会,将对温室气体和其他污染物的影响视为小到无法监管的程度。他把这种方法比作把整个披萨切成小块吃:“它的卡路里含量还是一样的。”

Some courts are losing patience with Trump’s revival of that move, experts said. The Obama administration had already started to feel judicial pressure to expand its climate analysis, and under Trump, the courts are becoming more forceful. Courts generally decline to second-guess agency conclusions, but they do intervene if they find an agency has omitted something important.

专家表示,一些法院对特朗普恢复这一举动失去了耐心。奥巴马政府已经开始感受到扩大其气候分析的司法压力,而在特朗普的领导下,法院正变得更加有力。法院通常不愿对机构的结论进行事后分析,但如果发现机构遗漏了某些重要的内容,法院确实会介入。

In 2017 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ruled that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission must analyze the downstream climate impacts of pipelines. In 2018, a New Mexico federal court rebuked the Bureau of Land Management for not considering the climate impacts of opening a national forest to drilling. In March, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia found that Interior had insufficiently explained how a Wyoming oil and gas lease sale could affect climate change. And in April, a Montana federal court ordered Interior to conduct an environmental review before lifting the Obama administration’s coal leasing moratorium.

2017年,美国哥伦比亚特区巡回上诉法院裁定,联邦能源监管委员会必须分析管道下游的气候影响。2018年,新墨西哥州一家联邦法院指责土地管理局(Bureau of Land Management)没有考虑开放国家森林进行钻探对气候的影响。今年3月,美国哥伦比亚特区地方法院(U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia)裁定,内政部未能充分解释怀俄明州出售石油和天然气租约会如何影响气候变化。今年4月,蒙大拿州的一家联邦法院下令,在取消奥巴马政府的煤炭租赁禁令之前,内政部必须进行一次环境评估。

The April decision on federal coal leasing demonstrated the Trump administration’s aversion to looking at broad emission trends.

今年4月关于联邦煤炭租赁的决定表明,特朗普政府不愿关注广泛的排放趋势。

The Obama administration had halted new coal leasing while it assessed the program’s cumulative impact on global warming. The Trump administration scrapped that review with an order by then-Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, but a Montana court ruled that the administration needed an environmental review of its own to restart coal leasing. Interior grumbled that “to date no [secretarial order] has required NEPA analysis” and produced a document that claimed restarting coal leasing would not increase emissions but would just change their timing (Climatewire, May 28).

奥巴马政府在评估该计划对全球变暖的累积影响时,已经停止了新的煤炭租赁。特朗普政府在时任内政部长瑞安·津克(Ryan Zinke)的命令下取消了这一审查,但蒙大拿州的一家法院裁定,政府需要自己进行环境审查,才能重启煤炭租赁。内务部抱怨说,“到目前为止,没有[文秘命令]要求进行国家环保局的分析”,并拿出一份文件,声称重新开始煤炭租赁不会增加排放,而只是改变了它们的时间安排(Climatewire, 5月28日)。

That episode demonstrates how environmental reviews can help a president who cares about climate change, or they can be a hindrance to a president who denies it, said Randi Spivak, the Center for Biological Diversity’s public lands program director.

生物多样性中心(Center for Biological Diversity)公共土地项目主任兰迪·斯皮瓦克(Randi Spivak)说,这段插曲表明,环境评估可以帮助关心气候变化的总统,也可以成为否认气候变化的总统的绊脚石。

About 25% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions come from public lands. But the Trump administration’s environmental reviews don’t engage with that big picture, Spivak said, comparing the administration’s approach to a shell game: It shuffles emissions analyses through different kinds of documents—resource management plans, environmental impact statements, drilling permits—until they’re hard to track.

美国大约25%的温室气体排放来自公共土地。但是,斯皮瓦克说,特朗普政府的环境评估并没有涉及这个大局,他把政府的做法比作一场空壳游戏:它通过各种不同的文件——资源管理计划、环境影响报告书、钻探许可证——来转移排放分析,直到很难追踪它们。

“At every stage of the game, BLM says, ‘Oh, we’ll do a more site-specific analysis [later],’” Spivak said, but by the time BLM gets down to the drilling level, there’s little climate analysis to be done and few ways to change course, because the agency has already granted a lease. She added that the Center for Biological Diversity has homed in on that practice in its lawsuits.

斯皮瓦克说:“在游戏的每一个阶段,BLM都会说,‘哦,(以后)我们会做一个更具体的现场分析。她还说,生物多样性中心(Center for Biological Diversity)在诉讼中已经把矛头指向了这种做法。

Trump administration officials respond that natural gas is the reason U.S. greenhouse gas emissions have fallen even as the economy has grown. Easier federal permitting can lead to more cheap gas, which in turn can push dirtier coal-fired power plants offline.

特朗普政府官员回应说,天然气是美国温室气体排放量下降的原因,尽管美国经济在增长。更容易获得联邦政府的许可会导致更多的廉价天然气,而这反过来又会使污染更严重的燃煤发电厂停产。

“The Trump administration is committed to addressing environmental challenges in order to ensure the highest quality of life to all Americans. The Department of the Interior’s role is to follow the laws in carrying out our responsibilities using the best science, and we are continuing to work to best understand and address the impacts of an ever-changing climate,” an Interior spokesperson said.

“的最高生活质量。内政部的作用是遵循法律,使用最好的科学来履行我们的职责,我们正在继续努力,以更好地理解和解决不断变化的气候的影响,”一位内政部发言人说。

To be sure, the Trump administration is not wrong that individual projects each have a small impact on climate change. And it is a complex matter to forecast emissions from actions like oil and gas leases because they draw from so many assumptions, like how a lease could affect the rest of the market, said Lynn Scarlett, who was deputy Interior secretary during the Bush administration.

可以肯定的是,特朗普政府没有错,每个项目对气候变化的影响都很小。曾在布什政府担任内政部副部长的斯嘉丽(Lynn Scarlett)说,预测石油和天然气租约等行为的排放量是一件复杂的事情,因为它们是基于很多假设,比如租约会如何影响市场的其他部分。

“Difficult isn’t even quite the right word. You have to question whether you’re getting really meaningful results” from analyzing individual projects’ emissions, she said.

“困难”这个词甚至都不太合适。她说,你必须质疑自己是否从分析单个项目的排放中获得了真正有意义的结果。

NEPA is important, but it’s not the best tool to understand emissions because it’s inherently oriented toward projects rather than the big picture, she added. Federal agencies, and even the entire executive branch, would get more meaningful climate information by examining how emissions react to their broad policies on things like coal and renewables, she said.

她补充说,《国家环境政策法》很重要,但它不是理解排放的最佳工具,因为它本质上是面向项目的,而不是面向整体。她说,联邦机构,甚至整个行政部门,将通过研究碳排放对煤炭和可再生能源等广泛政策的反应,获得更有意义的气候信息。

The Trump administration’s failure to take that broad approach matters more than the words of any individual environmental review, Scarlett said.

斯佳丽说,特朗普政府未能采取广泛的措施,比任何单独的环境审查的措辞更重要。

“These matters are complicated,” she said. “It’s not just the mere fact of ‘Well, did they put something in there about climate?’ ... All of this nests within the broader context that the administration has not put leadership focus on climate change.”

“这些事情很复杂,”她说。“这不仅仅是‘嗯,他们是不是在里面放了有关气候的东西?“…所有这些都建立在一个更广泛的背景下,即奥巴马政府没有把领导重点放在气候变化上。”

Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from E&E News. E&E provides daily coverage of essential energy and environmental news atwww.eenews.net.

经E&E新闻许可转载自Climatewire。E&E通过www.eenews.net提供基本能源和环境新闻的每日报道。

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