US Environmental Protection Agency head cancels Israel trip

The administrator has been scrutinized in recent days for his business and first class domestic and international travel on the job.

By
February 19, 2018 18:36
US Environmental Protection Agency head cancels Israel trip

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt speaks during a meeting held by U.S. President Donald Trump on infrastructure at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 12, 2018.. (photo credit: KEVIN LAMARQUE/REUTERS)

 
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WASHINGTON – US Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt has postponed an extensive trip to Israel for this week.

The administrator has been scrutinized in recent days for his business- and first-class travel while on the job, for both domestic and international flights. His office has said it started booking the expensive flights after his security detail suggested he adopt in order to avoid public confrontations with opponents of his policies. Pruitt made a career of battling the EPA and questioning mankind’s role in climate change before taking over last year, and has drawn condemnation and even ridicule for his views.

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Liz Bowman, a spokeswoman for the EPA, did not offer a reason for the trip’s cancellation, offering only: “We decided to postpone. The administrator looks forward to going in the future.”

Few details of the trip were released ahead of time, but Pruitt was scheduled to meet with his Israeli counterpart, Ze’ev Elkin and with settler leaders, and  stay at Jerusalem’s luxurious King David Hotel.

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