Scott Pruitt Is Out At The EPA, But His Policy Legacy Remains

10 Julio, 2018, 08:28 | Author: Enrique Watson
  • Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt walks during an Independence Day picnic for military families on the South Lawn of the White House

Pruitt, Oklahoma's attorney general at the time of his EPA appointment, had embraced the perks of office in Washington.

McKinny said she thinks that statement is outrageous and is bewildered by how long Pruitt was able to lead at the EPA, seemingly unworried that the president would fire him for any one of the offenses he's accused of committing. The Clean Power Plan aimed to cut carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants almost one-third by 2030.

Trump tweeted earlier Thursday that Pruitt had resigned. Many of the EPA regulations Pruitt scraped or delayed had not yet taken effect, and the tens of thousands of lost coal mining jobs the president pledged to bring back never materialized. According to the New York Times: "A retroactive deletion of meetings and attendees from a cabinet official's public records could violate the Federal Records Act, which requires agencies to maintain and preserve public documents, as well as a law prohibiting intentional distortion of federal records". Wheeler was confirmed as EPA's deputy administrator in April. He also said Trump showed he didn't understand how government works, was a bully and had "more baggage than all the other Republican candidates combined".

Mr Trump has praised Mr Pruitt for slashing regulations on the energy and manufacturing industries, including his move to repeal Democratic former president Barack Obama's signature program to cut carbon emissions from power plants, known as the Clean Power Plan.

In a resignation letter released to media outlets, Pruitt expressed no regret for any actions he had taken since being tapped by Trump to lead EPA a year ago. Wheeler then went to work as a lobbyist for top coal companies and other businesses and interests.

"Senators must confirm a nominee who will hold the health and safety of American families in higher regard than the profits of big polluters", he adds.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Wheeler said that his first communication to agency staff upon taking over was meant to reassure officials that business will continue as normal. The main difference between the two, say conservation groups, is Wheeler will likely be more effective than Pruitt in dismantling EPA safeguards.

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Widespread disgust for Pruitt "should serve as a blaring red siren for the Trump administration", Udall said.

Before Wheeler took on the post as Pruitt's second-in-command, he was a principle consultant for FaegreBD Consulting.

But this less flashy style is unlikely to endear him to environmental groups that had been critical of Pruitt.

The Environmental Working Group, a public health and environment watchdog, called Pruitt "unquestionably the worst head of the agency in its 48-year history".

"But the activists doubted that the departure, announced by President Trump via Twitter, would change the administration's policies".

"Now we have his deputy administrator coming in, and it's not clear whether this person is committed to protecting the environment". The government had launched numerous investigations on Pruitt, although he continued to insist that he had done nothing wrong. "The independent and experienced leader cared deeply about the future of the agency and restored its effectiveness".


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