EPA To Scrap Fuel Economy Targets For Cars And SUVs, Pruitt Under Fire For Cozy Rental From Energy Lobbyist

The Los Angeles Times reports:

The Trump administration is poised to abandon America’s pioneering fuel economy targets for cars and SUVs, a move that would undermine one of the world’s most aggressive programs to confront climate change and invite another major confrontation with California.

The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to announce in the coming days that it will scrap mileage targets the Obama administration drafted in tandem with California that aim to boost average fuel economy for passenger cars and SUVs to 55 miles per gallon by 2025, according to people familiar with the plans.

The agency plans to replace those targets with a weaker standard that will be unveiled soon, according to the people, who did not want to be identified discussing the plan before it was announced.

And a related story from Bloomberg:

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt’s lease at a Washington apartment owned by a lobbyist friend allowed him to pay $50 a night for a single bedroom — but only on the nights when he actually slept there.

White House officials are growing dismayed about the questions surrounding Pruitt’s living arrangement, including his initial inability to produce any documentation about his lease or his actual payments, according to three officials. The landlord provided EPA officials with a copy of the lease and proof of the payments Pruitt made.

The owner is a health care lobbyist, Vicki Hart. Her husband J. Steven Hart, is also a lobbyist and his firm represents clients in industries regulated by the EPA. In all, Pruitt paid $6,100 to use the room for roughly six months, according to copies of the checks reviewed by Bloomberg.