Scott Pruitt’s resignation, while long overdue, is yet another demonstration that people are not willing to accept officials who endanger people and the environment by doing the bidding of the fossil fuel and other abusive industries. While this is certainly a victory for climate justice, make no mistake, his tenure has done lasting damage to environmental policy in the U.S. and beyond.
Darling to Big Polluters and in bed with the very industries he was meant to regulate, it’s difficult to imagine someone less qualified to protect our environment than Pruitt. Undoubtedly, however, his next-in-line, ex-lobbyist EPA Deputy Administrator Andrew Wheeler, comes in as a close second. And unfortunately, the last year has shown us that the Trump administration has a long list of walking conflicts of interest ready to take the helm of the EPA.
But, from Washington D.C. to the U.N. climate talks, there is a resounding call to clean up the institutions, like the EPA and the UNFCCC, that are meant to protect people and the planet — not Big Polluters’ profits. And it’s working — Pruitt is just the latest of the historic number of Trump appointees who have been forced out since 2017 — and people around the world will continue to stay vigilant and demand that our public officials work for people, not for the interests of Big Polluters.