Rational Use of Science to Support National Goals
I actually think we have an opportunity to make national decisions in a more rational and scientific manner.
As I have told many people Science is not the problem, the application of scientific and engineering to solve national goals/issue is the problem. Do any of you know how Obama came to the conclusion to not support the Pipe line to transport Canadian and US oil?
We have politicized how we will meet our "national"
objectives. For major national project we have NEPA, which was intended for examining major decisions made or supported by the federal government. It was the intent of NEPA to assure all aspect where considered in making and ranking a decision. I was not required that the "best" decision be made but the decision basis had to public. Unfortunately if the process, supposedly, is used and our political representative do not feel it is necessary to explain their decision to the public and very few people know where and how to access the NEPA results.
Therefor the Pipe line decision may actually be the best and the most safe, environmentally friendly and most cost effective approach to meet Energy independence while Drilling the Artic for oil it easier to sell to Environmentalist- who wants protest in the artic? What votes are lost?
So the question asked should focus on how will Trump use science and a sound management process to make decisions that are well thought out regardless of political outcry of a vocal minorities.
I will give you one federal decision that lead to the worst environmental decision, The Hanford High Level Waste Remediation. Although this waste is the most toxic issue in Washington and supposedly an immediate threat to millions of people along the Columbia River, the simplest cost effective method to protect the public was not chosen; Pump the waste in to new tanks, D&D the old tanks and clean up the leaked waste while studying how to process the stored waste to a defined criteria and a defined place where it would be stored.
What was chosen and has now triple in cost is vitrification. Sixteen years have past and the cleanup is still 40 years a way. Is that an effective technical approach. Unfortunately scientist supported this approach because it would be Neat Science they could work on for years. We need the best Science but, we also need the best application of Science and Engineering. Since Trump is obviously not a political wonk we may actually get good science and business decision make in the future..