When Scott Pruitt was confirmed as Administrator of the EPA more than a year ago, his nomination raised red flags from all corners of the ocean conservation community. At his confirmation hearing, those concerns were validated as Pruitt demonstrated a serious lack of understanding the threats facing our ocean and the communities that depend on it.
Ocean Conservancy pledged to hold him accountable. Since then, we’ve witnessed firsthand what Pruitt stands for.
And it’s not good.
In addition to being up to his ears in scandals, in the 14 months that he’s been EPA Administrator, Pruitt has intentionally and methodically dismantled protections for our ocean, clean water and clean air:
- Pruitt supported the removal of the United States from the Paris Agreement, a short-sighted decision that ignored the threat that climate change poses to the millions of Americans that depend on our ocean for their businesses and livelihoods.
- Pruitt attempted to eliminate funding for Chesapeake Bay cleanup activities that curtail the amount of pollution that enters the waterway.
- Pruitt delayed the implementation of President Obama’s Water of the United States rules by pushing the start date to February 6, 2020. It’s a decision that harms the rivers, streams, estuaries and wetlands that are crucial for a healthy ocean.
- Pruitt proposed a budget that would completely eliminate essential EPA functions including keeping our beaches safe from pathogens, monitoring contaminants in the fish we eat and gutting the marine pollution program.
Scott Pruitt’s actions defy the mission of the agency charged with protecting human health and the environment. The EPA shouldn’t be driven by political ideology—after all, it was created by a Republican president and has been led by administrators on both sides of the aisle. They were all champions for clean air, clean water and the health of all Americans.
When it comes to our health, climate and our ocean, we can’t afford partisanship. That’s why we’re joining with the thousands of voices who are urging our political leaders to #BootPruitt.