The administrator of the EPA, Scott Pruitt, has resigned Thursday July 5, in a shocking turn of events. Scott Pruitt has been working with Trump to roll back all the climate change regulations. Pruitt has been replaced by the Senate-confirmed EPA deputy, Andrew Wheeler.
Although nothing is certain, we have reason to believe that Andrew Wheeler might actually be a worse administrator than Pruitt. Wheeler was once a coal-industry lobbyist and therefore regularly meets coal industry lobbyists. That means that Wheeler will most likely roll back even more environmental regulations that are in place to help combat climate change. Without the regulations, fossil fuel industries are practically given free reign to destroy the planet.
Scott Pruitt had a secret calendar that he used for meetings, most likely meaning that he was illegally meeting with people or was meeting with people working in the fossil fuel industry.
It is also possible that when the EPA did not accurately report the amount of methane that was coming from oil and gas fields that they were making sure not to share with the public this information.
Here is a list of what the EPA and Trump have done together during Pruitt and, in parenthesis, () what the regulation did.
Changed Flood Standards (required that federal agencies protect new infrastructure projects by building to higher flood standards)
Removed Coal Lease Freeze (did not give out leases for new coal projects for a three year period while an environmental study was being conducted
Removed Oil and Gas Methane Reporting Requirement (required oil and gas companies to report methane emissions); related to New Study Finds More Methane Leaks From Oil and Gas Fields Than the EPA Reports
Removed Mining Dump Regulation (prevented coal companies from dumping their waste into local streams), will increase coal production
Approved the Keystone XL Pipeline (a pipeline that carries dirty oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, very bad for the environment)
Approved the Dakota Access Pipeline (similar to the Keystone XL, but is in the Dakotas)
Removed Offshore Drilling Ban in Atlantic and Arctic (did not allow there to be oil and gas drilling in the Atlantic and Arctic)
Removed inclusion of greenhouse gas emissions in environmental reviews (withdrew federal guidance of the inclusion)
Lessened Industrial Polluter Emission Regulator (worked to lessen emissions from major industrial polluters)
Removed the Hydrofluorocarbon Rule (banned the use of hydrofluorocarbons, a powerful greenhouse gas)
Almost removed Clean Power Plan (restricts the amount of carbon dioxide that existing fossil fuel power plants can emit)
Lifted a freeze on new coal releases (did not allow new coal plants to be built)
Opened the Atlantic and Arctic to offshore drilling (originally, you were not allowed to drill for oil and gas in the Atlantic and Arctic)
Approved the Keystone XL Pipeline (dangerous pipeline that carries dirty oil from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, gives more oil to be burned)
Approved the Dakota Access Pipeline (another dangerous pipeline that contributes to climate change)
Reversed how the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Reports Greenhouse Gases (they used to include the indirect effects of greenhouse gases)
Opened up drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (drilling wasn't allowed in those places)
Relaxed Environmental Review Process for infrastructure (took in account the environmental impacts of building infrastructure)
Withdrew a proposed rule about reducing pollution at sewage treatment plants (was aimed at reducing the number of pollutants that escaped from sewage treatment plants)
Removed the rule regulating coal ash dumped, instead given the oversight to the state level (did federally regulate coal waste from power plants)
Prohibited funding third-party environmental projects during federal lawsuits (before, when a company was was settling a claim of environmental wrongdoing, like the VW scandal, they often were forced to fund third-party environmental projects, like cleaning up the coast, or something similar)
No longer supports Green Climate Fund (United Nations fund that helps developing countries reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change)