EPA Chief Slams Critics: Agency Uses Real Science

Image: EPA Chief Slams Critics: Agency Uses Real Science

Tuesday, 29 Apr 2014 07:53 AM

By Cathy Burke

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Environmental Protection Agency chief Gina McCarthy lashed out Monday at Republicans who've questioned the agency's scientific data.

During a speech at the National Academy of Sciences, McCarthy criticized a "small but vocal group of critics" who contend the EPA is using "secret science" to push clean air regulations, Politico reported.

Republicans Sen. David Vitter of Louisiana and Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas have pressed the agency to provide to the public the scientific data behind its clean air regulations, the Daily Caller noted.

“Those critics conjure up claims of ‘EPA secret science’— but it’s not really about EPA science or secrets," she said, Politico reported, citing excerpts from the speech.

"It’s about challenging the credibility of world renowned scientists and institutions like Harvard University and the American Cancer Society. It’s about claiming that research is secret if researchers protect confidential personal health data from those who are not qualified to analyze it — and won’t agree to protect it.

"If EPA is being accused of ‘secret science’ because we rely on real scientists to conduct research, and independent scientists to peer review it, and scientists who’ve spent a lifetime studying the science to reproduce it — then so be it.”

Republicans senators boycotted her confirmation vote last year, saying they were "completely unsatisfied" with answers provided by McCarthy on several topics.

“EPA’s leadership is willfully ignoring the big picture and defending EPA’s practices of using science that is, in fact, secret due to the refusal of the agency to share the underlying data with Congress and the American public,” Vitter complained, the Daily Caller reported.

“We’re not asking, and we’ve never asked, for personal health information, and it is inexcusable for EPA to justify billions of dollars of economically significant regulations on science that is kept hidden from independent reanalysis and congressional oversight."

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