Dec 7, 2019

Trump takes on toilets, complains about water efficiency

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

President Trump ordered a federal review of U.S. water efficiency standards in bathrooms on Friday, saying "people are flushing toilets 10 times 15 times as opposed to once."

Why it matters: Trump "routinely portrays himself as a champion" of the environment, but many have called him out for rolling back Obama-era environmental protections, Bloomberg writes.

Reality check: Older toilets can use up to six gallons of water per flush, while some low-flow toilets can use 1.28 gallons, The New York Times reports.

What he's saying:

  • "You can’t wash your hands, practically, there’s so little water comes out of the faucet. And the end result is you leave the faucet on and it takes you much longer to wash your hands.  You end up using the same amount of water."
  • "You turn on the faucet; you don’t get any water.  They take a shower and water comes dripping out.  It’s dripping out — very quietly dripping out...They end up using more water.  So, EPA is looking at that very strongly, at my suggestion."

Go deeper...Exclusive: Fundraising by environmental groups spikes under Trump

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Trump laments the state of toilets, windmills

President Trump speaks at the Turning Point USA Student Action Summit in West Palm Beach on Saturday. Photo: Andrew Harnik/AP.

Up next on President Trump's agenda: tackling clean energy machinery and products.

The big picture: "Trump is promising voters a world free of the everyday inconveniences associated with combating climate change — rolling back lightbulb regulations, ordering a study on low-flow toilets and turning bans on plastic straws into a campaign rallying cry," the Washington Post's Toluse Olorunnipa and Juliet Eilperin write.

Go deeperArrowDec 24, 2019

Big Pharma's wastewater pollution problem

Photo: David Woodfall/Getty Images

Contaminants from drug manufacturing facilities have been tainting wastewater with dangerously high concentrations, according to an investigation from STAT.

Why it matters: Polluting rivers and lakes with pharmaceutical runoff is not illegal, but can be harmful to wildlife and the environment — and wastewater treatment plants don't have the ability to remove pharmaceuticals.

Go deeperArrowDec 12, 2019

5 major Trump environmental regulation rollbacks in 2019

President Trump on Dec. 24. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The Trump administration so far targeted about 85 environmental regulations that protect air, water, land and public health from climate change and fossil fuel pollution, according to CNBC.

Why it matters: Eliminating these regulations can increase premature deaths from pollutants and produce higher levels of greenhouse gas emissions, according to research from the NYU Law School.

Go deeperArrowDec 24, 2019