OXON HILL, Md. — Environmental Protection Agency Administer Scott Pruitt proclaimed that the agency has entered a new future after his confirmation last week, saying that “change is on the way” in a speech before attendees Saturday at the Conservative Political Action Conference.

Pruitt, who’s speech came only eight days after he was confirmed by the Senate, repeatedly said that the “future ain’t what it used to be” at the agency, pointing to their renewed intention to focus on the rule of law.

“Process, rule of law and cooperative federalism — that’s going to be the heart of how we do business at the EPA. The future ain’t what it used to be at the EPA,” Pruitt said.

“As we look forward to the next four years, I think what we should do at this point is recognize that we should have hope an optimism,” Pruitt said. “That we’re going to go out and see a trajectory — a new day of freedom.”

The speech came only five days after his first address to the EPA, where he tried to calm concerns of longtime employees who are worried about his plans for the agency while pitching his ambitious vision for them for the next four years.

However, on Saturday, Pruitt had a different crowd, namely conservative activists who cheered talk about him trying to make the agency go away, which he said was “justified.” As attorney general in Oklahoma, he sued the EPA multiple times.

“As we look over the last several years, the agency that I’m tasked to lead at this point has been used by the previous administration to truly impact our country in ways we couldn’t have imagined eight years ago,” Pruitt said, pointing to the EPA’s effect on jobs and businesses. “People around this country look at the EPA the way they look at the IRS, and I hope to be able to change that.”

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