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EPA head: Obama created false choice 'between jobs and the environment'

EPA head: Obama created false choice 'between jobs and the environment'
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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt said Thursday that Americans don't have to pick between jobs and the environment, accusing the Obama administration of making people believe they had to choose.

“The president has sent a clear message that the last eight years, where we had to choose between jobs and the environment — those days are over,” Pruitt said on “Fox & Friends.” 

Pruitt cited a meeting two weeks ago where coal miners became “emotional” when President Trump signed an executive order set to undo much of former President Obama's clean-power climate agenda.

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“Two weeks ago we were at the EPA, joined by 40 or so coal miners from Pennsylvania. They were emotional about it because the war on coal ended; the war on fossil fuels ended,” Pruitt said.

“And this false choice between jobs and growth and the environment, we have rejected that,” he added.

Before and since taking office, Trump has repeatedly slammed Obama for getting rid of coal jobs and supporting laws constricting the industry.

In mid-February, Trump signed legislation that would end the Office of Surface Mining's Stream Protection Rule, a key Obama administration coal-mining law that aimed to protect water systems from coal-mining waste.