USDA reportedly won’t let its staff use the phrase 'climate change' in any of its work

Staff for the United States Department of Agriculture has been instructed by a senior staffer to avoid using the phrase "climate change," according to a report in the Guardian.

According to a series of internal emails from the USDA obtained by the outlet, Bianca Moebius-Clune, director of soil health for the Natural Resources Conservation Society of the USDA, instructed her staff to swap out politically charged phrases like "climate change" for "weather extremes" and "reduce greenhouse gasses" for "build soil organic matter, increase nutrient use efficiency."

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U.S. President Donald Trump refers to amounts of temperature change as he announces his decision that the United States will withdraw from the landmark Paris Climate Agreement, in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, U.S., June 1, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
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WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 1: White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon walks out after President Donald Trump speaks about the US role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 01, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 1: President Donald Trump speaks about the US role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 01, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 1: President Donald Trump points as he walks back to the Oval Office after speaking about the US role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 01, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 1: President Donald Trump speaks about the US role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 01, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 1: President Donald Trump points out after speaking about the US role in the Paris climate change accord in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC on Thursday, June 01, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
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The NRCS director reportedly encouraged her staff to pass along those departmental guidances on preferred language, maintaining that those instructions "won't change the modeling, just how we talk about it."

Moebius-Clune's directive, which the Guardian characterized as censorial, appears to minimize human impact in the overheating of the planet.

Though it is unclear from the emails obtained by Guardian where the instructions in Moebius-Clune's staff note originated, her missive marks the latest mandate from the Trump administration that rejects the overwhelming surplus of scientific evidence supporting human-caused climate change.

In July, Mic reported that the U.S. Department of the Interior pulled a climate scientist from a visit to a national park in Montana with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, a decision one source saw as an attempt to minimize attention toward climate change.

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Photographs from the 1940s to the 2000s show the drastic impact of climate change on our planet's glaciers. Here is a photo of Alaska's Muir Glacier, pictured in August 1941 (left) and August 2004 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Here's the snow that remained on Matterhorn Mountain in Switzerland in August 1960 (left), compared with August 2005 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Starting in the 1970s, NASA began using satellite images to document deforestation in several national parks around the world. Here's Mount Elgon National Park in Uganda in 1973 (left), compared with the park in 2005 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

The deforestation of Argentina's Salta Forest is starkly visible in this pair of photos from 1972 (left) and 2009 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

More deforestation is visible in Kenya's Mau Forest in these photos from January 1973 (left) and December 2009 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

A similar story applies to Kenya's Lake Nakuru National Park, shown here in 1973 (left) and 2000 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Deforestation is also prevalent in the South American Atlantic Forest in Paraguay — here's how it looked in 1973 (left) versus 2008 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

This area of Rondonia, Brazil was heavily deforested between 1975 (left) and 2009 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

So was the Baban Rafi Forest in Niger, from 1976 (left) to 2007 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

These images show the deforestation of Mount Kenya Forest in Kenya, 1976 (left) vs. 2007 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Climate change began to take a more extreme toll on glaciers in the 1970s as well. Here is a photo of Qori Kalis Glacier in Peru in 1978 (left) and again in 2011 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

These images document melting ice in Ecuador, from March 1986 (left) to February 2007 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Beginning in the 1980s, NASA also documented shrinking lakes across the globe, starting with this photo of Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado in 1987 (left). The same park is shown in 2011 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

The Aral Sea in Central Asia shrunk drastically between 2000 (left) and 2014 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

So did the Elephant Butte Reservoir in New Mexico. Here it is in 1994 (left) and again in 2013 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Rivers have been shrinking in Arizona and Utah as well — these images compare them in March 1999 (left) and May 2014 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Argentina's Mar Chiquita Lake shrunk significantly from 1998 (left) to 2011 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

And deforestation continued to take a toll as time went on, as evidenced by this pair of images of the Mabira Forest in Uganda in 2001 (left) and the same area just 5 years later (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Droughts have affected the US intensely over the past few years as well. Here are three images of water drying up in Kansas, taken in 2010 (left), 2011 (middle), and 2012 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

Iran's shrinking Lake Urmia is pictured below in July 2000 (left) and again in the same month in 2013 (right).

Photo Credit: NASA

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In May, President Donald Trump announced that he would withdraw the United States from the Paris agreement, an international accord signed by former President Barack Obama and the vast majority of the world's nations pledging to take aggressive action towards reducing carbon footprints.

Trump's decision drew fierce criticism internationally, as many saw it as a signal that the United States would not be a willing ally in curbing carbon emissions under Trump.

But it was hardly Trump's first signal: In December 2016, then President-elect Donald Trump nominated Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency. As attorney general of Oklahoma, Pruitt, who once described himself as a "leading advocate against the EPA's activist agenda," sued the agency he would later lead over its enforcement of the Clean Power Plan, a keystone of Obama's legacy on climate change that sought to curb greenhouse gas emissions.

In March, one month after Pruitt was confirmed as the EPA's leader, the president issued an executive order that effectively eviscerated the CPP. That same month, the White House communications team came under fire for seemingly cutting and pasting a full paragraph from an Exxon-Mobil press release in its own missive to reporters.

Four-thousand pages of Scott Pruitt's emails obtained by the Associated Press in June reveal a close coordination between the former Oklahoma attorney general and fossil fuel industry giants.

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