"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. "We're ready for a new chapter in mining", Brock said.
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Scott Pruitt on Wednesday said President Trump is keeping his promises on the EPA by shifting its focus to developing America's natural resources while protecting the environment.
The differing approaches of the two administrations was highlighted by Pruitt himself, who said that while Obama's stressed a choice to be made between jobs and environmental protection, Trump believed in no such dilemma.
Among the proposed casualties are the clean power plan, climate change research, hazmat cleanup funds and state grants for air, water, waste and toxic substance programs.
Administrator Pruitt spoke with coal miners about the President's recent Energy Independence Executive Order, which directs EPA and other federal agencies to review the Clean Power Plan and revise regulatory barriers that impede energy independence, including unnecessary burdens on coal miners and coal-fired electric utilities.
I would urge you to also contact your own US Representative about preserving the EPA funding. Public comments will be accepted through May 15.
"It is something we need to exit, in my opinion", he said. Consol Energy also made a splash earlier this decade when it chose to transform itself into primarily a natural gas production company after a storied history as a major coal producer. The order also took measures to further protect the coal industry, namely by instructing the Department of the Interior to lift a temporary ban on coal leasing on federal lands that the Obama administration put in place a year ago.
As Pruitt was descending into the mine, the Center for Coalfield Justice held a press conference at its Washington office to push back on the Trump administration's agenda.
Pruitt's predecessor, Gina McCarthy, had what was known as "door-to-door" protection - essentially from her residence each morning until she returned at night, according to Liz Purchia, a communications director at the EPA in the Obama administration.
"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.
Mines "provide a great deal of support for the local economy", he said.
Implementing the 2015 ozone standards also includes various deadlines for the EPA and states to take action to reduce pollution levels, all of which are still in place despite the ongoing administration review.