In the almost nine months since he’s been in office, President Trump has worked hard to undo every regulation that President Obama put in place. So far, he’s justified every executive order that reverses an Obama-era policy. However, after two massive hurricanes have hit the U.S. and caused serious damage, it seems that he’s starting to regret one of those hastily signed orders.
In 2015, President Obama signed Executive Order 13690 to “improve the Nation’s resilience to current and future flood risk.” This order called for construction in areas likely to flood to build at higher elevations.
On August 15, just three weeks before Hurricane Harvey hit, Trump undid that order with one line included in a larger infrastructure-related executive order:
‘Executive Order 13690 of January 30, 2015 (Establishing a Federal Flood Risk Management Standard and a Process for Further Soliciting and Considering Stakeholder Input), is revoked.’
The White House is now talking about a new executive order that would undo Trump’s decision.
During a press briefing on Friday, Homeland Security adviser Tom Bossert told reporters that, in the next month, the White House might put out another executive order or additional guidance that would essentially say the same thing as the order President Obama signed in 2015.
‘We shouldn’t use federal money to rebuild in ways that don’t anticipate future flood risk, so we need to build back smarter and stronger against flood plain concerns when we use federal dollars.’
Bossert also tried to justify President Trump’s decision to revoke Obama’s order, saying that it was a “smart move” for “expediting infrastructure development.”
‘What happened in the President’s infrastructure executive order was the rescission of an Obama-era order that had a broad-ranging and overreaching scope into construction permitting. And at the time that we rescinded it, we did so in the hope of expediting infrastructure development in this country, which I think was a smart move, for what it’s worth. The President certainly did as well.’
‘But now what we have to do is replace with thoughtful — whether it’s an executive order, regulations, or both — building standards and practices for the expenditure of federal money that makes floodplain and risk-mitigation sense.’
Bossert did his best to try and justify Trump’s actions, but it’s clear that Trump was less interested in developing infrastructure and more interested in undoing Obama’s efforts, especially the ones that have to do with climate change.
Watch Bossert’s comments in the video below, available via YouTube.
Featured image is a screenshot from the video.