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U.S. Senate confirms top EPA air quality official despite concerns

WASHINGTON, Nov 9 (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate voted on Thursday 49-47 to confirm a top air quality official at the Environmental Protection Agency, despite concerns raised by lawmakers over his industry ties.

William Wehrum, who had represented industry clients at law and lobbying firm Hunton & Williams, will serve as the EPA's assistant administrator for Air and Radiation, its top position for overseeing key air quality regulations.

Wehrum is now only the second high-level official after EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to be confirmed by Senate. (Reporting by Valerie Volcovici; Editing by Tom Brown)