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Lobbyist for coal company tapped to be deputy administrator of EPA

Coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler was nominated to be deputy administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Wheeler was included in a list of 16 nominations sent to the U.S. Senate on Oct. 5. Currently, Mike Flynn is the acting deputy administrator serving under administrator Scott Pruitt.

The new appointee started his career at the EPA. He has since represented clients before Congress, the U.S. Department of Energy, the EPA and the Department of Transportation. He also worked with Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., and the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.

He currently is a principal at the Faegre Baker Daniels firm and a registered lobbyist for Murray Energy Corp. The Sierra Club released a news release calling the nomination "absolutely horrifying" due to his connection to the coal industry.

The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity said, "Andrew is extraordinarily qualified to be EPA's Deputy Administrator."