Trump Orders Media Blackout At Government Agencies: Bans Use Of Social Media, Bars New EPA Contracts

Tyler Durden's picture

It wasn't just the EPA.

Earlier today, we reported that the Trump administration instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants.

Emails sent to EPA staff since President Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday and reviewed by The Associated Press, detailed the specific prohibitions banning press releases, blog updates or posts to the agency's social media accounts. On Monday, the Huffington Post reported that EPA grants had been frozen, with agency employees barred from speaking of the matter.  The memo ordering the social media blackout is shown below.

Cited by The Hill, Myron Ebell, who leads the Trump EPA transition, confirmed the freeze to ProPublica.  “They’re trying to freeze things to make sure nothing happens they don’t want to have happen, so any regulations going forward, contracts, grants, hires, they want to make sure to look at them first,” Ebell told ProPublica. Trump's pick for EPA director, Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, has frequently challenged agency policy in court. 

The Trump administration reportedly told the Department of the Interior to stop tweeting from its accounts over the weekend after the National Park Service's Twitter account retweeted a post about the crowd sizes at Trump's inauguration Friday. The agency brought back its accounts on Saturday.

Asked if the EPA had been gagged, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said on Tuesday: "I don't know ... we're looking into it ... I don't think it's a surprise we're going to review the policies but I don't have any info at this time."

According to Reuters sources, the move "reinforced concerns that Trump, a climate change doubter, could seek to sideline scientific research showing that carbon dioxide emissions from burning fossil fuels contributes to global warming, as well as the career staffers at the agencies that conduct much of this research."

The agency also was asked by the White House on Monday to temporarily halt all contracts, grants and interagency agreements pending a review, according to multiple sources. The EPA awards billions of dollars worth of grants and contracts every year to support programs around environmental testing, cleanups and research. According to Reuters,
the White House sent a letter to the EPA's Office of Administration and Resources Management ordering the freeze on Monday. "Basically no money moving anywhere until they can take a look," the staffer said, asking not to be named.

* * *

Now, as Reuters adds, other agencies were also impacted, and the Trump's administration has put staff at a slew of government agencies on notice - "be careful what you say."

In addition to the EPA, the Interior Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture also has seen efforts to curb communication. On Monday, staff at the department's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) were asked in an email to suspend the release of "any public-facing documents."

"This includes, but is not limited to, news releases, photos, fact sheets, news feeds, and social media content," the email said.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture disavowed the email on Tuesday, saying in a statement that it was released without "departmental direction and prior to departmental guidance being issued."

"ARS will be providing updated direction to its staff," according to the statement.

The ARS focuses on scientific research into the main issues facing agriculture, including long-term climate change.

Last week, staff at the Interior Department were told to stop posting on Twitter after an employee retweeted posts about the relatively low attendance at Trump's inauguration, and about how the issues of climate change and civil rights had disappeared from the White House website.

The department has since resumed tweeting.

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Falling Down's picture

The best news out of the EPA in 40 years.

Life of Illusion's picture



The Saint's picture
The Saint (not verified) Life of Illusion Jan 24, 2017 2:14 PM

The EPA doesn't need to be eliminated but it certainly needs to restate it's mission and be paired down with a sharp axe.


Antifaschistische's picture

LOL...."the EPA is yet to make a statement"   LOL.....that's because whoever makes a "statement" at this point will be self terminating.  This is hilarious. 

Ignatius's picture

We're catching stories post Flint warer crisis that water systems across the country are substandard or downright dangerous.  What in the f#ck is the EPA actually doing that's important and worthwhile?

balolalo's picture



and the trumpsters love it


froze25's picture

This isn't censorship, they are a dept of the Executive branch and follow orders including communication same as any other. Got a question ask the President's Press secretary.

They (EPA) promote and fund the research that promotes Climate Change being caused by CO2. Big time. Now the money is shut off. Lets see if we can get that money or some of it to study the effects on the Earth's Temperature caused by the Sun, Lets see how GMO crops are 300% higher in formaldehyde.

STATE DEC's do most of the real environmental work.

MANvsMACHINE's picture

How does the media know that there's a media blackout?  Did someone at the EPA already spill the beans against Trump's wishes?

froze25's picture

Could be, or The Trump Administration informed them to get ahead of the story.

xythras's picture
xythras (not verified) froze25 Jan 24, 2017 4:51 PM

Ban MEXICANS from working in .GOV

Funny thing is they started to fight eachother over deportation:


Save_America1st's picture



And well, while Mr. T. is on a roll, how's abouts banning the NDAA and it's "legalization" of using propaganda fake news against U.S. citizens, ay?

The NDAA Legalizes The Use Of Propaganda On The US Public


How the NDAA Allows US Gov to Use Propaganda Against Americans


Pentagon Approves U.N. Use Of Force Against American Civilians


House NDAA Bill Passed w/Amendment Formally Authorizing Gov’t To Lie To U.S. Citizens



Yet, all the fake, state-run corporate, "media" outlets still feed the unwitting public sheeptards their lies while accusing the rest of us who are trying to fight this bullshit as the liars.  Total psych warfare and info wars.

Mr. T. needs to chop up that NDAA bill too.

Put it on the list of to-do's, brother!!!  You're on a roll!!!  Don't let up on these scumbags....keep bashing their faces in. 




jeff montanye's picture

if we can just start picking out initials, reconsider dea.

for that matter, how much good work could the national institute of standards and technology be expected to provide after this?

FireBrander's picture

It's a notice to EPA employees that if you bitch to the media, your ass is in the unemployment line.

FireBrander's picture

Local Lefting Fucknut bitching that Trump is acting like a "Dictator" fuckshits, he's not, he's acting like a President; he's using the powers granted to him by the CONSTITUTION...JUST LIKE OBAMA DID!

The only difference is YOU agreed with Obama's "Dictator" moves...

Nick Jihad's picture

Pretty much. The EPA is freaking out because they for once are on the receiving end of treatment that they've been dishing out for decades.

ejmoosa's picture

The very same EPA who upon losing a court case proceeded to do what they wanted anyway.

jeff montanye's picture

i am pretty much an extremist when it comes to pollution and environmental degradation yet i think this is a healthy debate.  

i hope the scientists inside and outside government rise to the occasion and convince the public of the need to reduce fossil fuel pollution (i wanted it long before i heard of global warming).  

the democrats too should met the challenge and justify their use of air and space.

MsCreant's picture

You do not need to believe in global warming (from human activity) to be against pollution. Police pollution and you will do much to taper global warming, if it were real (I am a doubter because cycles sound reasonable, and because we caught some of their scientists lying about their results, which, if global warming was real, those folks should be executed [and I am not a lover of capital punishment]). Go after pollution, STFU about global warming. Ask China, we don't want to be China.

Antifaschistische's picture

Every publically traded organization I've worked for would terminate me for making "statements" to the media.   I don't know what the rules are in public sector but this is just standard practice.

Colonel Klink's picture

Might I suggest you refer to Obunghole in the future as a dicktaster?

Helix6's picture

You mean "Report Scientific Results" = "bitch to the media"?

We're about to find out the real meaning of "politically correct".

balolalo's picture

woo hoo!!!

fuck up the biosphere!!!

and you better shut the fuck up and don't tell on us!!!

#maga bitchez

froze25's picture

Do the world a favor and stop breathing to support your flawed beliefs.

Billy the Poet's picture

Far more people die from cold weather related events than from warm weather and yet Obama's policy was to try to make the climate even colder than it is. The man was a menace.

LyLo's picture

I know it's weird that we still exist, but as a skinny girl I fully support global warming.

I mean, is it just me or is it way too fucking cold?  And am I the only one that remembers girls asking this all the time?  Christ we've gotten fat.  No wonder everyone thinks it's gotten so much warmer...

The Saint's picture
The Saint (not verified) LyLo Jan 24, 2017 6:28 PM

Sorry to inform you that the world is most likely going to get much colder in the next 30 years.  I suggest you move farther south if you don't like the cold.

Redrum's picture

I could not help but notice that Trump was able to do in one day thet Michel O couldn't do in 8 years. Get 500 thousand fat women off their butts and march.

Stay thin and move south.

Billy the Poet's picture

Not really. Putin made me do it.

photonsoflight's picture

I will disagree. Obama destroyed the Democrats, increased gun sales and got Mr Trump elected.

MalteseFalcon's picture


Cannot wait for some eco-activists (all of them not so secretly funded by globalists) to get some jail time.

Come on, Earth First, show your g*ddamned, Soros funded, face.

Get those marijuana inmates out of the prisons.

We're gonna need the room for the ecos!!!


wildbad's picture

now lets get the dry fuck who drove the internal EPA project that poisoned the animas before a real hangin judge.

no ice's picture

Do tell us, balolao, just what in the hell the EPA is doing to protect the environment.  I can't even go for a jog around my town with dodging pesticide and herbicide companies spraying up the medians and sidewalks with toxic chemicals.  I can't remember the last I didn't see chemtrails in the sky.  Obama is a proponent of nuclear enegy, and many nuclear power plant developments were given the green light under his admin. Fucking fracking is a sick reality that flourished under the Obama admin.  Public drinking water is fluoridated and tainted with pharmaceuticals like prozac and statins.  The air, water and land are all polluted. So, just what exactly has the EPA been doing?  Of course, besides turning a blind eye to the destruction caused by big corporations who keep the EPA well oiled.  

jeff montanye's picture

particularly nuclear power and fracking are deeply part of the problem not the solution.

photovoltaic and wind are as cheap as coal, oil and nuclear, especially considering the salvage costs.

cheka's picture

trump is exceeding my low expectations.  keep it up boy!

Chris Dakota's picture
Chris Dakota (not verified) froze25 Jan 24, 2017 3:32 PM

Riot Fails, Trump Up!


In the four days since his inauguration on Jan. 20, President Trump’s approval index has boomed upward a whopping seven points. Back on January 20—Inauguration Day—Trump’s approval index was plus two points. Now, four days later, it’s plus nine points—after being plus four points on Monday.

At this time, 42 percent of the nation strongly approves of what President Trump is doing, while only 33 percent strongly disapprove—and overall, 57 percent approve of the president, while just 43 percent disapprove.

Trump’s approval rating boom comes after a series of executive actions including one that killed the highly unpopular multinational Pacific Rim trade deal the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP)

FireBrander's picture

Did you look into the guts of the survey? The last one had a heavy "non Trump Voter" bias.

jcaz's picture


Without exaggeration, Trump has done more constructive work in his first four days than Obama did in his eight years.

The EPA is a bloated monstrosity,  and operates with zero accountability;

This clean up is LONG past due.


fulliautomatix's picture

For what its worth, I read those numbers and gave them some credibility: "33% strongly disapprove" is a high number (and "only" is fake news), but not unexpected given our knowledge of an authortarian style and the "we need to do something" mandate. Sure, Trump is all about pissing (some) people off, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. The general experience of trepidation is the knowledge of recent history and its association with that painful asshole feeling.


GreatUncle's picture

When you start acting in the best interests of the people the rub off effect is awesome.

Must be the first president in 20 years that has done something for the people :-)

2nd term coming up at this rate.

Lore's picture



IntTheLight's picture

Fat ugly women screaming about menstruation while attacking Trump also increased his approval ratings. These women want their bodies left alone. I'm thinking they've been left alone for some time.


It won't be long before they propose that we start taxing atoms. With quarks, gluons, muons and leptons soon to follow.

Sokhmate's picture

It's possible that quarks, muons, gluons, leptons et al are fake (fake science)

In which case, if they tax them, would be not unexpected.