President-elect Donald Trump nominated Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to be the new leader of the Environmental Protection Agency. If you didn’t know, Oklahoma is a state where the oil and gas industry thrives. As the Attorney General of the state, he had been at odds with the EPA for a great number of years because they are against many of the drilling activities that are required to produce more oil and gas.
So, what could this all mean? With Pruitt in charge of the EPA, he may eliminate a lot of the tough regulations that promote environmentally friendly policies which are currently placed on states and energy companies. This would basically be a slap in the face of all the effort that President Barack Obama has made towards fighting climate change.
In fact, Pruitt once wrote that the climate change debate is “far from settled” as he joined up with attorney generals from other states to sue the EPA’s “Clean Power Plan.” This was a policy initiated by Obama with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the United States that are caused by the electricity sector. These attorney generals also sued over another EPA regulation which helped reduce methane emissions from the gas and oil sector.
Pruitt’s appointment will certainly be good news for the oil and gas companies because he will likely take a lot of the heavy regulations off their backs. Perhaps it will make gas prices drop as a result. The only problem is it could end up hurting the environment and cause global warming to accelerate.
Like many Republicans, Trump hasn’t really taken climate change seriously. He did have a private meeting with former Vice President Al Gore the other day, but it is unclear what they talked about. It was thought to be a sign that Trump may be taking another look at the global warming issue, but if he appoints Pruitt as the head of the EPA then he probably won’t be taking global warming seriously after all.