EPA Ends Climate Awards Sponsorship

Published October 2, 2017

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it will no longer sponsor the Climate Leadership Awards, a program honoring voluntary corporate actions to combat global warming.

EPA’s August 25 announcement is the agency’s most recent action undoing Obama-era climate programs in keeping with President Donald Trump’s decision to reduce unnecessary programs and deemphasize prevention of climate change, the threats from which he and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt say are exaggerated.

EPA has been the lead sponsor of the Climate Leadership program since it was instituted under former President Barack Obama in 2012, providing awards to companies that reduced greenhouse gas emissions in their internal operations or through their supply chains.

EPA did not explain why it is eliminating the awards program specifically, but the Trump administration has taken steps to undo dozens of Obama-era climate regulations as part of its stated effort to ease the regulatory burden on the U.S. economy.

Since 2012, the program has honored 115 companies, institutions, and individuals, including Microsoft, Boeing, Mack Trucks, and the University of California at Irvine, spending approximately $25,000 per year, plus travel, staff time, and resources, for sponsorship.

—Staff Reports