Trump Threatens Our Drinking Water

One of the real luxuries of our time, that even our grandparents might remember differently, is going to the tap and getting a glass of clear, refreshing water. In the U.S., our government is responsible with making sure our water stays clean and safe. This is one of the reasons we established the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) — because we believe that drinking water, so important for all life, must be protected.

More recently, we’re learning of cases from California to North Carolina, where toxic chemicals have threatened drinking water supplies —chemicals that have been clearly connected to cancer, delayed mental and physical development, or cause major reproductive harm.

And if Trump has anything to say about it, it will only get worse. He’s trying to turn the one agency designed to protect our water, into a puppet show for rich executives. Here’s how:

  1. First Trump nominated and installed well-known friend to polluters, Scott Pruitt, to run the EPA. Before his nomination, Pruitt had a habit of using his perch as the Oklahoma Attorney General to sue the EPA on behalf of his wealthy donors.
  2. Second, Trump appointed Nancy Beck, coming directly from the  chemical industry’s lobby (including companies like Dow, Dupont, Exxon) to help set the rules on toxic chemicals.
  3. Now, the newest nominee, Michael Dourson, is a scientist who has worked for decades for companies like Dupont, to downplay the risks of all kinds chemicals, from second-hand smoke to teflon.

Downplaying the risks of chemicals is what allows companies to dump them in our water. In Wilmington, North Carolina, residents only just found out that DuPont and its spinoff, Chemours, has been dumping chemicals into the Cape Fear river for decades (for more on this disaster, read my Op-ed). In Victorville, CA, chemicals from the nearby military base have also leaked into the
water system.

In some cases, these chemicals were developed on purpose to be water and oil resistant, which means that they are extremely difficult to remove before they hit our taps. These chemicals have been known to be dangerous by the companies using them, but kept hidden from the general public.

What we need is an EPA that isn’t controlled by the wealthy polluters; an EPA that will defend our health by keeping dangerous chemicals like lead, asbestos, and BPA, out of our water, air, food, and surroundings; an EPA that will fight for
our future.

If Trump succeeds with this latest nomination, then the EPA turns into the bogus agency he wants, rubber-stamping chemicals so corporate executives can line their pockets  at our expense. But with your help, we can prevent this. Stay tuned next week for more on what we’re doing to sink Trump’s plan to takeover the EPA. And how you can help.