Tracking the Environmental Policies of the Trump Administration >>
News from Ground Control: Planet Trump (Jan. 20)
Now that President Donald Trump has been sworn in, the focus can now shift fully to his incoming cabinet and first presidential actions.
Here are several of this week’s deep dives into the new president’s picks to run the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Agriculture, and what to expect in his first weeks in power.
The New York Times, Eric Lipton and Coral Davenport (Jan. 14, 2017) Scott Pruitt, Trump’s EPA Pick, Backed Industry Donors Over Regulations
As Mr. Pruitt ran for election, at least $40,000 in contributions poured into his campaign from nearly 30 executives at poultry companies named in the lawsuit or attorneys at law firms representing them, including Mark Simmons, the founder of Simmons Foods; Donald J. Smith, then the chief executive of Tysons Foods; and Gary Weeks, a lawyer listed on the court papers as representing George’s, another company targeted in the lawsuit, according to data assembled by the nonprofit Environmental Working Group and confirmed by The New York Times.
StateImpact: Oklahoma, Joe Wertz (Jan. 16, 2017) Oklahoma AG and EPA Pick Pruitt Stalled Pollution Lawsuit After Contributions from Poultry Industry
“Scott Pruitt’s antipathy for holding polluters accountable in his own state is a bad sign for things to come across America if he’s given the reins at the EPA,” EWG President Ken Cook said in an emailed statement. “The EPA’s job is to protect public health, not let industry off the hook for polluting our rivers and drinking water.”
USA Today, Erin Kelly (Jan. 18, 2017) EPA Nominee Pruitt Contradicts Trump Claim That Climate Change is a Hoax
"Not a single American voted for dirtier air and drinking water, but if Mr. Pruitt takes the helm at the EPA, that’s what millions of Americans and thousands of communities will face," said Ken Cook, co-founder and president of the Environmental Working Group. "Every senator, regardless of party, should reject this nomination on behalf of their constituents’ health."
The New York Times, Julie Hirschfeld Davis and Maggie Haberman (Jan. 18, 2017) Sonny Perdue is Trump’s Choice for Agriculture
“It’s certainly hard to imagine that a former fertilizer salesman will tackle the unregulated farm pollution that poisons our drinking water, turns Lake Erie green, and fouls the Chesapeake Bay and the Gulf of Mexico,” said Scott Faber, senior vice president of government affairs at EWG, an environmental research group.
USA Today, Bartholomew Sullivan (Jan. 19, 2017) Industry Groups Mostly Positive to Perdue Nomination
“I can see why voters he courted so effectively in rural America wonder why President-elect Trump took so long to pick a secretary of agriculture, but put yourself in his custom-made shoes,” said Kenneth A. Cook, president of the Environmental Working Group, a Washington think tank that tracks USDA subsidy payments to agribusiness.
"From his penthouse apartment on Fifth Avenue, his closest reference point is a place called Sheep Meadow, a very short limousine ride to the southern reaches of Central Park."
The Guardian, Oliver Milman (Jan 19. 2017) Outgoing EPA Chief Reveals Fears Trump Administration Will Halt Climate Action
The New York Times, Coral Davenport (Jan. 18, 2017) Scott Pruitt, Testifying to Lead EPA, Criticizes Environmental Rules
Huffington Post, Arthur Delaney (Jan. 18, 2017) Scott Pruitt is Unsure How Much Lead is Safe for People (The Answer is None)