The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will partner with regulated sectors of the economy to find solutions for environmental problems, Administrator Scott Pruitt announced Tuesday.
A sector-based approach can help increase long-term certainty within the economy, as well as find creative solutions for problems based on sound data, Pruitt said in a press statement. The EPA’s so-called “Smart Sectors” program will also re-examine how the agency engages with industries to reduce unnecessary regulations.
“When we consider American business as a partner, as opposed to an adversary, we can achieve better environmental outcomes,” Pruitt wrote.
Pruitt, who sued the agency several times when he served as the Oklahoma’s attorney general, noted that the program was, in part, intended to address how former President Barack Obama approached environmental regulations.
“The previous administration created a narrative that you can’t be pro-business and pro-environment,” Pruitt said regarding what many conservatives believe was Obama’s adversarial position against the fossil fuel industry.
President Donald Trump has rolled back several of his Democratic predecessor’s climate regulations, including the so-called Clean Power Plan, an EPA-administered regulation that many conservatives credit with destroying the coal industry. Pruitt also helped convince the president to remove the U.S. from the Paris climate deal.
Pruitt is trying to refashion the EPA, transitioning the agency from one that fights man-made global warming to one that protects human health and the environment.
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