EPA nominee wants to understand impact of regulations in West Virginia

"It's not an either-or proposition", he said.

"You are going to be the head of the agency to protect the environment, and your personal feelings about whether climate change is caused by human activity and carbon emissions is immaterial?"

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) doesn't appear to have much faith in Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt's statement that he doesn't believe climate change is a "hoax." James Inhofe saying that he will rein in a "radical environmental agenda" pursued by the EPA under the Obama administration. So far, he has sued the EPA 13 times to weaken water protections, to halt mercury pollution limits on coal plants and to cut smog pollution.

Democrats, however, portrayed him as a lackey for energy companies that have contributed to his political campaigns. Sanders said, "you're not gonna get my vote".

Booker, ranking Democrat Tom Carper of DE and Sen.

President-elect Donald Trump's nominee to lead the Environmental Protection Agency is set to outline a vision for scaling back the office's reach and putting states on the front line as the primary stewards of the air and water. "We don't expect record years every year, but the ongoing long-term warming trend is clear", said Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies. Both his opponents and his supporters believe his record indicates he will aggressively carry out Trump's vows to slash EPA regulation to boost industry, including USA oil and gas drilling and coal mining. He asked Pruitt to commit to recusing himself in those cases where he would be "plaintiff, prosecutor, judge, and jury". "I want an attorney general - and a head of our E.P.A. - who is not averse to protecting Oklahoma's most outstanding waterways", said Ed Brocksmith, who is a co-founder of a group called Save the Illinois River.

Pruitt later sparred with Vermont Sen.

Pruitt's allies argue that environmentalists and progressive groups are unfairly demonizing him, painting an inaccurate picture of his record.

Paul Ryan: ObamaCare repeal will have replacement
He said he spoke with Trump's team Tuesday morning and that he's "looking at" Trump's timeline. "Not going to happen". So is the provision barring insurers from denying coverage based on pre-existing conditions.

Pruitt also disagreed with his would-be boss, Trump, who once tweeted that climate change is a "hoax" started by China.

Rejecting the worldwide scientific consensus that fossil fuel emissions are changing the climate, Pruitt has received more than $300,000 in campaign donations from the fossil fuel industry since 2002. However, he left some wiggle room regarding debates to be had about "the degree and extent of that impact, and what to do about it".

The remarks by Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma's attorney general, immediately drew rebukes from Democrats on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, including California's newly seated senator, Kamala Harris.

If confirmed, Pruitt said he would reject the idea that regulators should pick “winners and losers, ” a phrase often used by opponents of climate regulations when referring to laws and climate policies that bolster low-carbon forms of renewable energy such as wind and solar instead of fossil fuels. Robert Casey, D-Pa. Markey said that was not enough to reassure Americans of his objectivity, adding that Pruitt should commit to a blanket recusal.

Pruitt said he looked forward to working with Moran on that issue. Committee Chair John Barasso, R-Wyoming, repeatedly followed negative questioning of Pruitt by reading into evidence news articles and endorsements supportive of the attorney general.

"In this nation we can grow our economy, harvest the resources God has blessed us with, while also being good stewards of the air, land and water by which we've been favored", Pruitt said.

Pruitt did say that he believes the EPA administrator has "a very important role to perform in regulating CO2", and that there is a legal obligation to do so.

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