Last week’s Senate approval of Scott Pruitt as head of the EPA was met with dismay by a number of environmental groups.

“Scott Pruitt is now set to be the most dangerous EPA Administrator in the history of our country,” said Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune. “Pruitt has taken millions of dollars from corporate polluters, and has protected their interests at every turn - yet, he is now in charge of protecting our children from the dirty air and toxic water created by these very same polluters. Pruitt has a long record of ignoring science, assaulting public health safeguards, and holding the agency he now leads in contempt. His confirmation is an environmental and public health disaster.

Unanswered questions

“We are deeply disappointed in the Senators who backed Pruitt. They are elected to represent their constituents’ best interests, but instead voted to protect corporate greed. This is a vote that should not even have happened, given the unanswered questions about Pruitt's hidden e-mails with fossil fuel companies that a judge has ordered to be released next week. Sierra Club and its 2.7 million members and supporters will continue to mobilize and resist this corrupt administration’s attacks on public health, clean air, and clean water every step of the way.”

Pruitt was supported in his bid by Trump's energy adviser Harold Hamm, the head of Continental Resources, one of the nation's biggest oil producers.

As Attorney General in Oklahoma -- one of the nation's biggest oil and natural gas producers, Pruitt filed dozens of lawsuits challenging EPA regulations on carbon emissions and water pollution.

News sources report that Pruitt has been active in attempts to suppress the scientific data behind climate change and its effect on public health and welfare.

Opposed "regulatory overreach"

Pruitt’s supporters include a coalition that includes American Energy Alliance, Competitive Enterprise Institute, Americans for Limited Government and Balanced Energy for Texas.

In a letter to the Senate urging Pruitt's approval, the coalition said he has “consistently fought for Oklahoma families and communities and has been a stalwart defender against federal intrusion into state and individual rights.” It praised Pruitt for opposing “unconstitutional regulatory overreach” under the Obama administration.