Andrew Wheeler is the co-leader of the energy and natural resources practice at the firm Faegre Baker Daniels, and the Washington Post reported that his “leading lobbying client” there is coal giant Murray Energy. Wheeler’s lobbying firm profile also lists him as Vice President of the “Washington Coal Club.” Graphic: Media Matters

9 October 2017 (IFL Science) – At the end of last week, the White House issued a statement detailing a few more appointments made to senior posts by the President, including the long-absent deputy administration of the beleaguered Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). To no-one’s surprise, that position has gone to Andrew Wheeler, a coal lobbyist and a killer of climate change regulations.

As has been widely reported, the EPA is currently being run by the most anti-scientific, pro-coal administrator in its entire history. With almost entire scientific advisory boards and senior posts going to former industry darlings, the appointment of Wheeler is par for the course.

Until recently, he’s been working at Faegre Baker Daniels, an international law firm that advises multinational businesses. His role involved co-leading the firm’s energy and natural resources practice, and much of his legal career has involved supporting the efforts of the coal industry – including the notorious Murray Energy – which has involved attempts to sue the very organization he’s to be second-in-command of.

Wheeler is also a former aide to Senator Jim Inhofe, who is arguably most infamously known among the scientific community for throwing a snowball on the floor of the Senate in order to mock the concept of global warming. Thanks to his work, several bipartisan climate initiatives and pieces of legislation have been killed off. […]

“Halloween apparently came early this October because the nomination of Andrew Wheeler as Deputy EPA Administrator is absolutely horrifying,” Melinda Pierce, the Legislative Director of the Sierra Club, said in a statement.

“There actually could not have been a worse choice for this highly influential position that is charged with protecting the health and communities of Americans across the nation.” [more]

Trump Chooses Coal Lobbyist To Be Pruitt's Deputy At The EPA

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