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EPA Proposal to Limit Science Used in Rulemaking Takes Center Stage During Committee Meeting

[2019.11.13, Wed 23:03] The EPA proposal to limit science used in rulemaking was discussed by panel members during a hearing held today by the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, with patient confidentiality serving as a major issue. This week's EPA proposal to limit science used in rulemaking was discussed by panel members during a hearing held by the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, with patient confidentiality serving as a major issue. A draft of the EPA proposal, titled "Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science," would require scientists to disclose all of their raw data, including confidential medical records, before the agency could consider the conclusions derived from the academic study. Paul Billings, senior vice president for advocacy at the American Lung Association, explained that "This means the EPA can justify rolling back rules or failing to update rules based on the best information to protect public health and the environment, which means more dirty air and more premature deaths." Today, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology held a hearing titled "Strengthening Transparency or Silencing Science? The Future of Science in EPA Rulemaking" in which panel members discussed the issues correlated to the proposal. Michael Halpern, deputy director for the Center for Science and Democracy at the Union of Concerned Scientists, strongly opposed the proposal stating, "This is a wholesale politicization of the process," while additionally adding, "It was hard to imagine that they could have made this worse, but they did," said Halpern. The proposal allows the public 30 days to offer comments on the changes to the EPA plan, with agency officials hoping to finalize the measure in 2020.
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