'An expected choice for science adviser of the US Environmental Protection Agency believes the air is too clean – another indication that Donald Trump’s head of the EPA appears to be stacking the group in charge of trying to protect the environment with climate sceptics.
Robert Phalen, who currently directs the Air Pollution Health Effects Laboratory at the University of California Irvine, has research that would support the deregulation of policies aimed at preventing air pollution.
“The relative risks associated with modern [particulate matter] are very small and confounded by many factors,” Mr Phalen wrote in a 2004 study. “Neither toxicology studies nor human clinical investigations have identified the components and/or characteristics of [particulate matter] that might be causing the health-effect associations.”
Mr Phalen has asserted that air is currently too clean, because children’s lungs need to breathe irritants so their bodies can learn how to fight them. “Modern air,” he said in 2012, “is a little too clean for optimum health.”
Since becoming EPA administrator earlier this year, Scott Pruitt has been consistently lambasted by Democrats, scientists and environmental groups for several actions he has taken as head of an agency that has been tasked with protecting human health and the environment by writing and enforcing regulations based on laws passed by Congress.'
Read more: Man who thinks pollution can make children healthier expected to join Trump's environment team
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