Columbus, OH – Today, the U.S. Senate confirmed Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt as administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In response, the Ohio Environmental Council’s Executive Director Heather Taylor-Miesle released the following statement:
“We are extremely disappointed that the U.S. Senate ignored Scott Pruitt’s obvious conflicts of interest and cozy relationship with the fossil fuel industry. Senators who voted yes on his nomination, including Ohio’s own Senator Rob Portman, have cast a vote to protect polluter profits over protecting Americans’ health.
“Yesterday, a federal judge ordered Pruitt to turn over nearly 30,000 emails that will likely illustrate his inappropriate ties to the fossil fuel industry. It is unfortunate the Senate could not wait to review these emails before rushing this nomination process through.
“While the majority of Senators voted against public health and climate action today, the OEC is grateful for leaders like Senator Sherrod Brown for standing for Ohio communities. We need environmental champions like Senator Brown now more than ever.
“Ohioans want, and deserve, clean air and clean water. As he enters his new role, we remind Administrator Pruitt that it’s his job to work for every American, not corporate donors, to protect those vital resources and fully enforce our nation’s environmental laws. Make no mistake – we will hold him accountable if he fails to safeguard public health and address climate change.”