“We’re, right now, having the cleanest air and cleanest water on the planet,” Trump told Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G7 summit. Really?

By Ian Horswill


Posted on August 27, 2019

US President Donald Trump is a proud American and with the 2020 US presidential election 15 months away there no better time to proclaim your achievements.

But is what he is claiming true?

“We’re, right now, having the cleanest air and cleanest water on the planet,” Trump told Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the G7 summit.

Part true, part false. It should be noted that Trump became US President on 20 January, 2017. He succeeded Barack Obama who was US President from January 20, 2009.

Donald Trump.jpeg

The US Environmental Protection Agency state that between 1970 and 2018, the combined emissions of the six common pollutants (PM2.5 and PM10, SO2, NOx, VOCs, CO and Pb) dropped by 74% per cent as the US economy grew, vehicles drove further and the population increased. “Air quality improves as America grows,” the EPA said. However, it should be noted that the number of unhealthy air days has been rising since 2016.

However, Trump’s assertion that the US is the cleanest country on the planet is a little bit of a stretch. The American Lung Association State of the Air 2019 gives credence to Trump’s claim; for example, Cheyenne, the capital and most populous city of the state of Wyoming, has the least year-round particle pollution, but if you really want fresh air then it’s in Australia on the island state of Tasmania. The Cape Grim Peninsula in northwestern Tasmania has the cleanest air on the planet but the Australian Bureau of Meteorology-funded Cape Grim Baseline Air Pollution Station officer Sam Cleland told AFP in March that its readings rise when the winds blow from the cities of Melbourne and Sydney and it is hit by ozone-depleting gases from as far away as China.

The non-profit Health Effects Institute’s State of Global Air 2019 report ranked the US the 37th dirtiest out of 195 countries for ozone, also known as smog, worse than the global average for population-weighted pollution. Countries such as the UK, Japan, Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, Albania, Cuba, Russia, Vietnam, New Zealand and Canada have less smoggy air, AP reported.

The US ranks eighth cleanest on the more deadly category of fine particles in the air and on environmental quality overall. Yale University‘s Environmental Performance Index puts the US 27th. Switzerland has the best environmental quality overall.

In terms of the country with the cleanest tap water to drink, Denmark is the best, according to Magical Planet. However,The Richest states the cleanest tap water to drink is in Switzerland.

In a new conference with French President Emmanuel Macron at the G7 summit, Trump said: “I feel that the United States has tremendous wealth. The wealth is under its feet. I’ve made that wealth come alive. … We are now the number one energy producer in the world.”

In 2013, when Obama was President, the US became the world’s top producer both of natural gas and petroleum hydrocarbons, according to the US government’s US Energy Information Administration. The agency states that the US became the world’s top crude oil producer last year.

Finally, Trump spoke about the North Korea leader Kim Jong-un when he was at a new conference with Macron.

“With respect to North Korea — Kim Jong-un, who I’ve got to know extremely well, the first lady has gotten to know Kim Jong-un and I think she’d agree with me, he is a man with a country that has tremendous potential.”

The First Lady Melania Trump has never met Kim Jong-un.

White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham clarified Trump’s comment, saying Trump confides in his wife on his relationship with Kim and “feels like she’s gotten to know him, too”.