Scott Pruitt's comments on carbon dioxide come just over two weeks after he took the helm of the Environmental Protection Agency, the agency with the authority to regulate CO2 and other greenhouse gases as pollutants. Susan Walsh/AP hide caption

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Susan Walsh/AP

William Ruckelshaus is sworn in as administrator of the new Environmental Protection Agency as President Richard Nixon looks on at the White House on Dec. 4, 1970. Charles Tasnadi/AP hide caption

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Charles Tasnadi/AP

How The EPA Became A Victim Of Its Own Success

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Adam Scott of Australia plays during the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at the Trump National Doral Blue Monster course in 2016. David Cannon/Getty Images hide caption

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Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, shown in 2013, is President-elect Donald Trump's pick to head the EPA. Pruitt's outspoken criticism of climate change and his close ties to the energy industry have raised concerns about his ability to lead the agency. Sue Ogrocki/AP hide caption

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A government watchdog's report says Flint residents' exposure to lead in city drinking water could have been stopped months earlier by federal regulators. Carlos Osorio/AP hide caption

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Katherine Du for NPR

Where Lead Lurks And Why Even Small Amounts Matter

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Orange sediment laced with heavy metals is visible in the path of water coming out of the Natalie/Occidental Mine in southwestern Colorado. This mine is one of dozens on a proposed Superfund listing pending with the EPA. Several mines in the area have been leaching the tainted water for years — well before the Gold King Mine spill. Grace Hood/Colorado Public Radio hide caption

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Grace Hood/Colorado Public Radio

One Year After A Toxic River Spill, No Clear Plan To Clean Up Western Mines

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The logo of German automaker Volkswagen AG can be seen on an administrative building at the Volkswagen factory on the day of the company's annual press conference on April 28 in Wolfsburg, Germany. Sean Gallup/Getty Images hide caption

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The village of Hoosick Falls, N.Y., sits along the Hoosick River in eastern New York. Elevated levels of a suspected carcinogen known as PFOA were found in the village's well water, which is now filtered. Hansi Lo Wang/NPR hide caption

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Hansi Lo Wang/NPR

Elevated Levels Of Suspected Carcinogen Found In States' Drinking Water

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Volkswagen CEO Matthias Mueller speaks to the media Sunday in Detroit, apologizing for the scandal that has plunged the German auto giant into crisis. Paul Sancya/AP hide caption

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'We Didn't Lie,' Volkswagen CEO Says Of Emissions Scandal

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The Environmental Protection Agency said Monday that additional diesel Volkswagens were equipped with "defeat devices," making them run more cleanly during testing. Markus Schreiber/AP hide caption

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Kevin Murphy says he is proud of what he and the other workers do at the Rosebud mine, including digging the coal and reclaiming the land afterward. Amy Martin/Montana Public Radio hide caption

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Amy Martin/Montana Public Radio

New EPA Rules Motivate Montana To Look Beyond Coal

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