More rewriting of history. A new report finds that in the first year of the Trump administration, U.S. government websites have been systematically altered to cut mentions of climate change. However, there is no evidence of tampering with climate data.
The report, published by the nonprofit Environmental Data & Governance Initiative (EDGI), says that several government agencies—notably the EPA—have removed or reduced their web content about climate change.
Since Trump’s inauguration, the group has monitored thousands of government web pages for changes or deletions. In some instances, “climate change” is replaced with the vaguer words “sustainability” or “resiliency.” In others, some climate change webpages are taken down entirely.
For instance, the Bureau of Land Management’s web page on climate change was taken down between May and November 2017, the report states. The EPA’s “Student’s Guide to Global Climate Change” went offline sometime between February and April 2017.
“While we cannot determine the reasons for these changes from monitoring websites alone, our work reveals shifts in stated priorities and governance and an overall reduction in access to climate change information, particularly at the EPA,” the group says.
EDGI emphasizes that, so far, it hasn’t seen evidence of the removal or deletion of climate data sets, as some scientists and activists had feared.