The election of Donald Trump as U.S. president and a Republican-controlled Congress portend impacts to the chemistry enterprise. In addition, state ballot measures also decided in the Nov. 8 election will affect the burgeoning analytical testing industry that’s grown around legal marijuana.
With Trump in the White House and Republicans controlling both chambers of Congress, cuts in federal spending are likely. This means chemistry researchers are apt to see the dwindling of federal grant money from the National Science Foundation, the Energy Department, and other federal agencies.
Budget cuts would also limit the abilities of federal agencies to regulate, which could trammel the chemical industry’s expectations for modernized regulation of its products. With tightly limited resources, the Environmental Protection Agency could struggle to implement Congress’ revisions earlier this year to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), which had strong backing of chemical manufacturers and product formulators.
Trump has been quiet on the topic of chemical regulation, with one exception. He has spoken out about the benefits of asbestos, a known human carcinogen that activists are calling on EPA to ban under its new TSCA authorities....More to come soon.
UPDATE: Here are President-elect Trump's answers from ScienceDebate.org.
UPDATE 2: Here's some speculation about the EPA transition team from Scientific American. Mostly climate-oriented comments, deregulation-inclined.
UPDATE 3: Here's an item from the Healthcare page of the official transition website: "Reform the Food and Drug Administration, to put greater focus on the need of patients for new and innovative medical products"