Our Response to the EPA’s Proposed “Transparency” Rule

We sent a letter to Scott Pruitt, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, on May 2 in response to the proposed agency rule “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science.” Pruitt claims the rule will enhance “transparency” at the EPA. But we at the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund, and numerous scientists and major scientific societies, fear the rule will dramatically restrict the use of sound science in agency decision-making.

In the letter, we urge Pruitt to extend the public comment period for the proposed rule from the current 30 days to at least 90 days to allow for a more thorough discussion of what it will mean for the EPA to no longer base its decisions on rigorous scientific research.

Lauren Kurtz, our director, wrote:

“This proposed rule would place substantial restrictions on what science EPA can consider in its decision-making without meaningfully improving transparency in science. It would particularly inhibit decision-makers at EPA from considering important studies examining the human health impacts of everything from air pollution to toxic chemicals to climate change. The potential for the proposed rule to do serious damage not only to EPA’s ability to carry out its core mission, but to scientific research in the United States as a whole is difficult to overstate. CSLDF is deeply concerned about the implications of this proposed rule and we urge EPA to allow more time for a crucial public discussion of its potential impact.”

Read the entire letter here.

Update: On May 24, the EPA announced it would extend the comment period to August 16 and hold a public hearing on July 17 for the proposed rule in response to the many requests it received.

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