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Trump now wants Putin to visit the White House this fall; Also on the Friday rundown: health insurance rates to rise by almost 9 percent in California; and as the climate crises reaches “Zero Hour” young people take a stand.

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Environmental Groups Take Stock of Trump's First 100 Days

Environmental groups continue to put pressure on President Trump and give failing grades for his first 100 days. (Pixabay)
Environmental groups continue to put pressure on President Trump and give failing grades for his first 100 days. (Pixabay)
May 2, 2017

DENVER – President Donald Trump marked his 100th day in office this weekend, saying his administration "had brought profound change to Washington."

While agreeing that change has been profound, environmental groups say it's been anything but positive, especially in regard to policies that protect public health.

Natural Resources Defense Council President Rhea Suh says since taking office, Trump has targeted clean-water protections, fuel-economy standards and safeguards against dangerous climate pollutants.

"The first 100 days are fairly dizzying in terms of the level, the breadth and the depth of the environmental attacks that they've unleashed - things like the purity of the water we drink, the cleanliness of the air we breathe and sanctity of the places that we recreate," she says.

Trump also has threatened to pull the United States out of the Paris Climate Accords and moved to cancel the EPA's Clean Power Plan, calling it a threat to jobs. The plan would have forced coal-fired power plants to reduce their carbon emissions.

Trump's 100th day was Saturday, and 300,000 people attended a national climate march in Washington, D.C. Events were held in solidarity in Denver, Durango and Pueblo and dozens of other U.S. cities.

The Trump administration also proposed significant cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency, and nominated climate-change skeptic Scott Pruitt to head the agency.

Suh says this is despite polling that shows a majority of Americans would like the agency's powers preserved or strengthened.

"With 30-percent cuts to that agency, that's literally like taking cops off the beat," she explains. "That will prevent EPA from doing its job. It will prevent EPA from protecting us and it will certainly allow polluters to have a greater license in their activities."

Trump has touted his environmental policies as needed to needed to spur economic growth.

According to a Quinnipiac University poll conducted 73 days into the president's term, 61 percent of voters disapprove of Trump's handling of the environment - more than twice as many as voters who approve.

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - CO