Washington Update

FASEB Responds to Controversial EPA Rule

By: Yvette Seger
Thursday, July 12, 2018

On July 12, FASEB submitted comments strongly opposing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science,” issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The NPRM has been a source of controversy between EPA leadership and the scientific community since its formal introduction on April 30.

In its comments, FASEB reiterated the need for federal agencies to use the best available science in developing policies and regulations that affect public health. This new rule is framed in a manner that indicates a desire for increased transparency and reproducibility: the EPA would only consider research for which the underlying data are public.

But FASEB and other scientific organizations oppose the NPRM because it would exclude the consideration of critical studies for policy making purposes. These important environmental research studies rely on personal health information from thousands of people, most who have agreed to participate in the study as long as their information is kept confidential.

FASEB urged the EPA to rescind the NPRM and work with the research community to identify a data sharing strategy that fosters transparent utilization of high-quality science in the development of agency policies and regulations.