It’s always good to hear from Mr. [Carl] Mumpower, and I sincerely appreciate his explanation of conservativism, from the root word conserve: “to use or manage wisely; preserve, save” [“Asheville’s Progressive Addiction Is Growing Old,” Jan 22, Xpress]. I completely support managing resources wisely and working to save what we have.
However, I get confused applying the term conserve, as stated by Mr. Mumpower, to a few of the 95 regulations the current administration has rolled back [quoted from the Dec. 21 New York Times article, “95 Environmental Rules Being Rolled Back Under Trump”]. Such as:
• “Rolled back most of the requirements of a 2017 rule aimed at improving safety at sites that use hazardous chemicals that was instituted after a chemical plant exploded in Texas.”
• “Proposed doubling the time allowed to remove lead pipes from water systems with high levels of lead.”
• “Proposed a rule exempting certain types of power plants from parts of an E.P.A. rule limiting toxic discharge from power plants into public waterways.”
• “Revoked a rule that prevented coal companies from dumping mining debris into local streams.”
• “Ended an Occupational Safety and Health Administration program to reduce risks of workers developing the lung disease silicosis.”
• “Reversed an Obama-era rule that required braking system upgrades for ‘high hazard’ trains hauling flammable liquids, like oil and ethanol.”
• “Rejected a proposed ban on chlorpyrifos, a pesticide linked to developmental disabilities in children. (A European Union ban is to take effect in 2020.)”
• “Rolled back a roughly 40-year-old interpretation of a policy aimed at protecting migratory birds, potentially running afoul of treaties with Canada and Mexico.”
• “Revoked a directive for federal agencies to minimize impacts on water, wildlife, land and other natural resources when approving development projects.”
• “Lifted ban on drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.”
• “Scrapped a proposed rule that required mines to prove they could pay to clean up future pollution.”
• “Lifted a summertime ban on the use of E15, a gasoline blend made of 15 percent ethanol. (Burning gasoline with a higher concentration of ethanol in hot conditions increases smog.)”
And: In CBO’s projections, the federal budget deficit is $960 billion in 2019 and averages $1.2 trillion between 2020 and 2029.
Conserve? I think not. Exploit, destroy, abuse? I think so.
— Dinah Williams