Trump’s EPA moves to undo smog protections

Back when he was Oklahoma’s attorney general, Scott Pruitt, the new head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, teamed up with lawyers representing the coal, oil, and cement industries to sue the EPA over federal ozone standards. Now Pruitt’s EPA appears to be backing away from defending the rule that limits ground-level ozone—a byproduct of fossil fuel pollution that produces smog and is linked to respiratory and heart ailments. The agency has asked a federal court to delay oral arguments in the lawsuit, claiming that more time is needed to “fully review” the smog rule. America’s skies may be hazy, but it’s clear that the EPA, under Pruitt’s direction, is protecting polluters instead of public health.

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