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Trump Administration Cancels NASA Plan to Track Greenhouse Gases

The White House has mounted a broad attack on climate science, repeatedly proposing cuts to NASA's earth science budget

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US President Donald Trump.
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At a time when the world is struggling to fight climate change, US President Donald Trump’s administration has quietly killed a NASA system to monitor the flow of greenhouse gas, the media reported.

The White House has mounted a broad attack on climate science, repeatedly proposing cuts to NASA’s earth science budget, including NASA’s Carbon Monitoring System (CMS), the Science Magazine reported this week.

It has now scrapped the funding for the US space agency’s CMS which has until now used satellite and aircraft instruments to monitor carbon dioxide and methane levels remotely — spending $10m each year, the Independent reported on Thursday.

Canceling the CMS “is a grave mistake”, Kelly Sims Gallagher, director of Tufts University’s Centre for International Environment and Resource Policy, told the Science Magazine.

NASA
NASA. Pixabay

“If you cannot measure emissions reductions, you cannot be confident that countries are adhering to the (Paris climate) agreement,” Gallagher added.

Other scientists also expressed their concerns about the impact the killing oc CMS would have on fighting climate change.

Scrapping the system was “disappointing”, said Stephen Hagen, a senior scientist at Applied GeoSolutions in New Hampshire.

Also Read: Kim Says Trump Meeting will be Positive For Koreas

“(This) means we’re going to be less capable of tracking changes in carbon,” he added.

But the NASA system has been an obvious target for Trump who had begun the withdrawal process from the Paris accord.

The accord was signed in December 2015 by nearly 200 countries to curb global carbon emissions and contain global warming to 2 degrees Celsius. (IANS)

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Donald Trump Not Worried About Impeachment, Defends Hush Payments

Trump acknowledged repaying Cohen for $130,000 paid to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford.

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U.S. President Donald Trump sits for an exclusive interview with Reuters journalists in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. VOA

President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he was not concerned that he could be impeached and that hush payments made ahead of the 2016 election by his former personal attorney Michael Cohen to two women did not violate campaign finance laws.

“It’s hard to impeach somebody who hasn’t done anything wrong and who’s created the greatest economy in the history of our country,” Trump told Reuters in an Oval Office interview.

“I’m not concerned, no. I think that the people would revolt if that happened,” he said.

Federal prosecutors in New York said last week that Trump directed Cohen to make six-figure payments to two women so they would not discuss their alleged affairs with the candidate ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

They said the payments violated laws that stipulate that campaign contributions, defined as things of value given to a campaign to influence an election, must be disclosed, and limited to $2,700 per person.

Donald Trump, Prince
U.S. President Donald Trump sits for an exclusive interview with Reuters journalists in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington. VOA

Democrats said such a campaign law violation would be an impeachable offense, although senior party leaders in Congress have questioned whether it is a serious enough crime to warrant politically charged impeachment proceedings.

Impeachment requires a simple majority to pass the House of Representatives, where Democrats will take control in January. But removal of the president from office further requires a two-thirds majority in the Senate, where Trump’s fellow Republicans hold sway.

Cohen is scheduled to be sentenced on Wednesday in New York for his role in the payments to the two women — adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

Trump has denied having affairs with them.

Earlier this year, Trump acknowledged repaying Cohen for $130,000 paid to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford.

U.S.A., Trump
In these 2018 photos, Paul Manafort leaves federal court in Washington, left and attorney Michael Cohen leaves federal court in New York. VOA

He previously disputed knowing anything about the payments.

Trump has slammed Cohen for cooperating with prosecutors, alleging that the lawyer is telling lies about him in a bid to get a lighter prison term. He has called for Cohen to get a long sentence and said on Tuesday his ex-lawyer should have known the campaign finance laws.

President Donald Trump said on Tuesday he was not concerned that he could be impeached and that hush payments made ahead of the 2016 election by his former personal attorney Michael Cohen to two women did not violate campaign finance laws.

“It’s hard to impeach somebody who hasn’t done anything wrong and who’s created the greatest economy in the history of our country,” Trump told Reuters in an Oval Office interview.

“I’m not concerned, no. I think that the people would revolt if that happened,” he said.

Federal prosecutors in New York said last week that Trump directed Cohen to make six-figure payments to two women so they would not discuss their alleged affairs with the candidate ahead of the 2016 presidential election.

Michael Cohen, Trump
Michael Cohen walks out of federal court, Nov. 29, 2018, in New York, after pleading guilty to lying to Congress about work he did on an aborted project to build a Trump Tower in Russia. VOA

They said the payments violated laws that stipulate that campaign contributions, defined as things of value given to a campaign to influence an election, must be disclosed, and limited to $2,700 per person.

Democrats said such a campaign law violation would be an impeachable offense, although senior party leaders in Congress have questioned whether it is a serious enough crime to warrant politically charged impeachment proceedings.

Impeachment requires a simple majority to pass the House of Representatives, where Democrats will take control in January. But removal of the president from office further requires a two-thirds majority in the Senate, where Trump’s fellow Republicans hold sway.

Cohen is scheduled to be sentenced on Wednesday in New York for his role in the payments to the two women — adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy model Karen McDougal.

Trump has denied having affairs with them.

Also Read: U.N. Donald Trump’s Impeachment may be Possible: Key Lawmaker

Earlier this year, Trump acknowledged repaying Cohen for $130,000 paid to Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford.

He previously disputed knowing anything about the payments.

Trump has slammed Cohen for cooperating with prosecutors, alleging that the lawyer is telling lies about him in a bid to get a lighter prison term. He has called for Cohen to get a long sentence and said on Tuesday his ex-lawyer should have known the campaign finance laws. (VOA)