Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), contradicted the beliefs and findings of the organization he runs.
On Thursday, Pruitt tried to kibosh the well-respected consensus of the science community that climate change is primarily anthropogenic. He claimed that there is so much uncertainty surrounding measuring this phenomenon, that it cannot be concluded that humans are at fault.
While awaiting his scheduled speech at an oil industry conference in Houston, Pruitt said to CNBC:
‘I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact. So no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.’
‘But we don’t know that yet … we need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.’
When CNBC host Joe Kernen questioned Pruitt on where he stands with regard to carbon dioxide being considered the primary ‘control knob’ in perpetuating climate change, Pruitt’s response was baffling.
How can the head of the EPA tout stances which negate the theories of said organization?
In 2009, the EPA found that because greenhouse gas emissions cause warming they put the health and wellbeing of current and future eras in danger. With his statements to CNBC, it was implied that Pruitt wanted to re-evaluate the findings that suggested the carbon emissions posed a threat to human lives.
During his Senate confirmation in January he did acknowledge the legitimacy of climate change, which he feels the need to continually call global warming – but was unsure of how much human contribution played a part in.
Since he doesn’t concur with the consensus that a large part is human related contributions, environmentalists have named Pruitt a “climate denier.”
Donald Trump himself denied the permissibility of climate warming, calling it a hoax. Contrarily, Obama implemented significant regulations related to climate with the Clean Power Plan: which capped power plant’s carbon emissions. It seems though that Trump and Pruitt are collaborating to undo these environmental regulation changes Obama made.
These findings gave the former Obama administration fortitude. The regulations they put into place forced emissions regulation by the EPA at their discretion. While holding the chair as the attorney general of Oklahoma, Pruitt attempted to have it overturned, but failed.
The endangerment findings and the Supreme Court ruling in 2007 that allowed for the regulation of greenhouse gases by the EPA were described as “the law of the land” when Pruitt spoke to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
Watch Pruitt’s interview with CNBC below:
Featured image screengrab via YouTube.