Donald Trump has appointed Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency. This happens to be a major update for environmentalist, since the climate change Trump is skeptical of is also a matter of doubt for Pruitt.
Trump called global warming a hoax. Climate change activists have been alarmed ever since he was elected to be the next US president. His take on the issue is exactly the polar opposite of Barack Obama's. Obama has taken a number of major steps to counter climate change issues.
But, there was hope. Environmentalists had hope on Ivanka Trump, the president-elect's daughter, who recognizes global warming as a major issue. Many people thought that she, being one of the most influential people in Trump's life, might be able to convince her father about the issue.
However, with the appointment of Pruitt as the EPA head, Trump has sent a strong message about what he feels about global warming and other related issues. It hints that the new administration may not bother much about climate change. Trump indicated during his campaign that he might dismantle the EPA and pull back from the Paris agreement.
According to Ken Cook of the Environmental Working Group, Pruitt may turn out to be the most hostile EPA administrator in history. He may have a totally different view on safe drinking water and clean air.
"Scott Pruitt running the EPA is like the fox guarding the henhouse," Fortune quoted pro-Clinton Gene Karpinski, the president of the League of Conservation Voters, as saying. "Time and again, he has fought to pad the profits of Big Polluters at the expense of public health."
The 48-year-old, on the other hand, commands high respect from conservative activists. Laura Sheehan of the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity says Pruitt is going to be a "voice of reason" about environmental issues.
According to the New York Times, Pruitt's appointment may be Trump's way of weakening the EPA. Since he cannot cancel the rules altogether, an experienced person like Pruitt may help him delay the proceedings and eventually take everything apart. Environmentalists seem to be highly alarmed by the climate change Trump update.