Reports indicate president-elect Trump will appoint Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruit to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Trump, who had campaigned on the overregulation facing farmers and criticized EPA’s decisions, took a strong step forward on capitalizing on his promise to have someone at the EPA that would be a “friend of agriculture.”
Sen. Deb Fischer (R., Neb.) said in a statement she is eager to meet with Pruitt to discuss his plans for rolling back the “harmful rules and regulations put forth by the EPA over the past eight years.” She said, if Pruitt is confirmed he will be charged with “returning the EPA to its intended mission: implementing the nation’s laws, not creating new ones.”
In Pruitt’s time as attorney general he has regularly spoken against EPA’s regulatory overreach outside of the bounds given to it from Congress. He was also one of many state attorneys general who challenged EPA’s waters of the U.S. rule in different courts. He has also challenged EPA’s climate action plan.
Zippy Duvall, president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, said Pruitt’s nomination is “welcome news to America’s farmers and ranchers—in fact, to all who are threatened by EPA’s regulatory overreach—and should help provide a new degree of fairness for U.S. agriculture.”
Duvall added, “We know that in his position as attorney general in Oklahoma, Pruitt has stood up for common-sense, effective regulation that protects the environment and the rights of the regulated community. We have been grateful for his effective legal work in response to EPA’s overreaching Waters of the U.S. Rule.”
Duvall stated he anticipates that as EPA administrator, Pruitt will listen to ag’s concerns and those of others who work with the nation’s natural resources on a daily basis. “Agriculture is a profession based on a solid ethic of conservation. It helps guide everything we do, and we expect that Pruitt will understand that in regulatory matters dealing with agriculture and the environment,” he said.
Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said the industry looks forward to working with Pruitt to “carry out President-elect Trump’s strong commitments to protecting the Renewable Fuel Standard and ending restrictions to getting more ethanol into our fuel supply.”