President Donald Trump has promised to create jobs in the United States. While he has rallied behind legacy (see: outdated) jobs in coal and oil, the President has made it very clear that he has no love for science or the environment.
The President’s attack on common sense is now focused on the closure of a major hub of innovation in Illinois. Among the President’s proposed budget cuts is the closure of Peoria’s National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research.
The facility is one of 17 USDA sites that are being targeted by the Trump administration. If approved by Congress the plant would close and nearly 200 jobs would be lost.
“President Trump’s proposed closure of Peoria’s Agriculture Lab is incredibly troubling and misguided,” said Bustos, D-Moline.
“This lab is the largest USDA agriculture research lab in the country and is an integral part of our community. I’ll fight tooth-and-nail to make sure the doors at Peoria’s Agriculture Lab stay open and that they continue to provide the excellent research that makes our region proud every single day,” Bustos added.
Very Few Details
The Peoria closure is listed in a section titled “Proposed Laboratory Closures” which can be found in the “2018 President’s Budget Agricultural Research Service” plan. The plant is listed beside 16 others that would be closed if Trump’s budget was approved as it stands.
A Leader In Agricultural And Medical Research And Utilization
What’s most troubling is that the President is targeting a facility that is responsible for major breakthroughs in various fields of research.
NCAUR maintains a mixed portfolio of interdisciplinary science ranging from fundamental to applied research. Microorganisms and/or their enzymes are being developed at the facility to transform raw agricultural materials (starch, proteins, oils) to commercially valuable products such as food additives, fuels, cosmetics, and industrial lubricants.
The facility has worked tirelessly to improve food quality and human nutritional. Research conducted at the facility has aided in the control of agricultural pests while increasing crop yield.
Peoria’s National Center for Agriculture Utilization Research, which opened in 1940, is most well-known for creating the technique used to mass produce penicillin, an antibiotic. The center also helped create Xantham gum and a new method to plant soybeans as a commercially viable crop.
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James Kosur is the former Editor-In-Chief and co-founder of Hill Reporter. He recently served as an editor for Business Insider and various other publications. James and his partners sold Hill Reporter to a new owner in July 2019.