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West Coast immigrants' rights groups pan President Trump’s new immigration proposal as “elitist.” Also on the Friday rundown: Consumer advocates want stronger energy-efficiency standards. And we'll take you to a state that ranks near the bottom for senior mental health.

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Mothers Group Protests Trump's EPA Pick Over Clean Air Record

The Clean Air Act has reduced pollution, but clean air advocates say more needs to be done. (Pixabay)
The Clean Air Act has reduced pollution, but clean air advocates say more needs to be done. (Pixabay)
January 16, 2017

SALT LAKE CITY – A group of clean air advocates is running a series of television ads opposing President-elect Donald Trump's nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

Clean Air Moms Action, the political action partner of Moms Clean Air Force, notes Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt has a long history of opposing clean air and water standards that protect families.

And Gretchen Dahlkemper, national field director of Moms Clean Air Force, points out that Pruitt has sued the EPA multiple times, challenging the Clean Power Plan, regulations to reduce methane emissions and more.

"These include standards for reducing soot and smog pollution,” she states. “This includes trying to repeal protections against emissions of mercury, arsenic, acid gases and other toxic pollutants from power plants."

Pruitt's supporters say he would do his part to protect clean air and water while rolling back regulations he thinks are unnecessary or that hamper business and cost jobs.

According to the National Resources Defense Council, Pruitt joined coal and power companies twice to reverse the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards under the Clean Air Act.

Dahlkemper maintains that the regulations Pruitt has been challenging still are necessary.

"We need to continue to address these issues,” she stresses. “Childhood asthma is on the rise. We need to address smog and ground level ozone that impacts the most vulnerable lungs of our small children."

The Senate is scheduled to hold its confirmation hearing for Pruitt on Wednesday.

Eric Galatas, Public News Service - UT