White House to Pull Nominee to Head Environment Council

Senate EPW
Kathleen Hartnett White testified before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in November

The White House plans to withdraw the controversial nomination of Kathleen Hartnett White for head of the Council on Environmental Quality.

She cleared the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee previous year on a party-line vote, but Democratic opposition meant the White House had to renominate her this month. Democrats argued her views were too "extreme" and that she had shown "disrespect" for science and environmental laws.

The Washington Post first reported the planned withdrawal on Saturday. She previously lead the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

The failure of her nomination marks a small upset for the Trump administration's environmental agenda. The White House council coordinates federal environmental policy and actions among agencies and with states.

Hartnett-White, a former Texas regulator, eked through the confirmation process past year with only Republican votes despite radical views on issues like climate change and a humiliating public hearing at which she questions.

She is a former member and commissioner of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

She'd also said renewable forms of energy are "a false hope that simply won't work" and called scientists' climate findings "the dogmatic claims of ideologues and clerics".




The committee's top Democrat Thomas R. Carper of DE had threatened to try to block her confirmation.

While most of President Trump's nominations to environmental policy posts have been approved, Congress has declined to take up the cause of Hartnett White.

White, who isn't a scientist by trade, said at a 2011 forum that "there is no environmental crisis - in fact, there's nearly no major environmental problems" in the U.S.

Environmentalists, who had been alarmed by her nomination, celebrated the news.

In any case, Buchele says Hartnett White revealed to him years before that "she bolstered directions, just not to the detriment of development and that industry is really fundamental to a sound situation".

Mr Trump would have had to resubmit Ms White's nomination.

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