EPA head tells coal miners 'regulatory assault is over'

U.S. President Donald Trump | Joe Raedle  Getty Images

"The coal industry was almost devastated by years of regulatory overreach, but with new direction from President Trump, we are helping to turn things around for these miners and for many other hard working Americans", said Administrator Pruitt.

"The new administration is at last willing to look at us, rather than not", he said.

As could be expected, environmental groups railed against the EPA's decision to review the rule.

The EPA's regulatory reform task force, established by President Trump's February 24 executive order, is seeking public input on which climate rules to roll back, the agency said Wednesday in the Federal Register. What happened to coal under former President Barack Obama, Pruitt said in a four-minute address, is "really sad". The agenda reinforces Administrator Pruitt's commitment to refocusing EPA on its intended mission, returning power to the states, and creating an environment where jobs can grow.

Pruitt applauds Trump's signing of the American energy independence executive order, eliminating numerous Obama-era climate change regulations that made it hard for businesses to operate in the U.S.

Several of the nation's largest coal companies were forced to seek bankruptcy protection in the a year ago as electric utilities switch to cheaper, cleaner-burning natural gas made more plentiful through a drilling technique known as hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. "We're going to partner together with you".

It's been a hard year thus far for the Environmental Protection Agency.

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Brock said while everyone in the coal industry has "felt a lot of pain" over the past eight years, they always believed there would still be a need for coal.

The EPA will hold a public hearing April 19 on the proposed rule before finalizing it.

"We know that "back to basics" is just code for sending the EPA back to the bad old days before the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act", Randy Francisco, an organizer with the Sierra Club's Beyond Coal Campaign in Pennsylvania, wrote in a blog post.

One enforcement activity that could be set for an increase: security for Scott Pruitt, the new E.P.A. administrator.

On behalf of ACE's 500 members, executive vice president Brian Jennings provided the EPA with the following recommendations to tackle regulatory burdens, which unnecessarily limit the production and use of ethanol and stall job creation and economic growth in rural America.

EPA administrator Scott Pruitt has requested around-the-clock personal protection, which would be a first for an EPA chief and could require hiring 10 additional full-time employees.

"If the Trump administration is really concerned about the economic health and the environmental health of this country - if they really are - they're not going about it the right way", she said.

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