EPA Removes Climate Change References from “Heat Island Effect” Webpage
In a report released on July 22, 2019 the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative (EDGI) released its latest report “The New Digital Landscape” detailing changes to government websites between 2016 and 2018 that reflect the Trump Administration’s anti-science agenda.
The report highlights how during this time period, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) changed its “Heat Island Effect” website to downplay the impact of climate change on urban heat islands. One of four scrolling banners at the top of the page was removed; that banner linked to the agency’s “Climate Change and Heat Islands” page and also briefly discussed how climate change and heat islands interact. While the “Climate Change and Heat Islands” page is still there, it is no longer navigable from the Heat Island homepage and unless a user has previous knowledge of the page’s existence it is virtually impossible to find. Research shows that the combination of climate change and the urban heat island effect is expected to cause more heatwaves in cities which will result in increased mortality for elderly and poor populations.