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White House withdraws nominee to head the CEQ

By JULIET EILPERIN and BRADY DENNIS
The Washington Post

February 04. 2018 11:45PM




WASHINGTON — The White House has withdrawn its controversial nominee to head the Council on Environmental Quality, Kathleen Hartnett White, whose selection a year ago had failed to gather momentum with some Senate Republicans raising questions about her expertise.

The administration released a statement Sunday in which Hartnett White asked that her name be pulled from further consideration, effective immediately. President Donald Trump had re-nominated Hartnett White for the job in January after the Senate failed to vote on her nomination during the last congressional session, due in part to fierce opposition from Democrats.

“I want to thank President Trump for his confidence in me and I will continue to champion his policies and leadership on environmental and energy issues of critical importance to making our nation great, prosperous and secure again,” she said in the statement.

Hartnett White, who once headed the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and now serves as a fellow at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, has stirred controversy because of her statements on climate change.

Testifying in the fall before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, she said that while humans probably contribute to current warming, “the extent to which, I think, is very uncertain.”

Her comments, which echoed some other appointees of Trump, contradict the conclusion of an overwhelming number of scientific experts and the findings of the federal government. Leading scientific assessments have repeatedly found that recent climate change is fueled largely by human greenhouse gas emissions.

“I’m not a scientist, but in my personal capacity, I have many questions that remain unanswered by current climate policy,” Hartnett White said at her confirmation hearing. “I think we indeed need to have more precise explanations of the human role and the natural role.”


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