"One of the top executives of a consulting firm that the Environmental Protection Agency has recently hired to help it with media affairs has spent the past year investigating agency employees who have been critical of the Trump administration, federal records show."
"The Senate Commerce Committee voted Wednesday to move forward with the nomination of Barry Myers to be head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)."
"Previously accused of sabotaging the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Steven Gardner is now likely to be its next chief."
"The Great War began in 1914 with cavalrymen on horseback and ended four years later with armored tanks and airplanes. It was, as one scholar put it, the 'first war to run on oil.' To ensure a steady flow of fuel, petroleum executives met regularly with federal officials in Standard Oil’s oak-paneled boardroom on Wall Street. The same industry broken up as an illegal monopoly in 1911 had become a quasi-arm of government."
"The Environmental Protection Agency’s inspector general will investigate how it decided to spend more than $25,000 installing a secure, soundproof communications booth in the office of Administrator Scott Pruitt."
Almost a dozen investigations are underway at the U.S. EPA and the Interior Department, including of unusual travel, private sector connections and staff/advisory panel moves. This week's TipSheet runs down the probes in detail, and offers resources for coverage of developments in 2018.
"U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has picked Anne Idsal, a well-connected Texas state official, to lead the agency's Region 6 office."
"Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt on Thursday defended his frequent taxpayer-funded travel and his purchase of a custom soundproof communications booth for his office, saying both were justified."
"A pacifist environmentalist and expert on Icelandic crime thrillers emerged on Thursday as Iceland’s new prime minister, its fourth in two years, after three parties signed a coalition agreement."
"The Trump administration has terminated a cross-agency group created to help local officials protect their residents against extreme weather and natural disasters."