EPA axes 38 more science advisers cancels panel meetings

first_img Peter Meyer Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt When the first round of non-renewals became public last month, an EPA spokesman noted that reappointments were not guaranteed and that the agency wanted to ensure fair consideration of all nominees for advisory board posts.In a statement today, spokeswoman Amy Graham said the agency is grateful for the service of BOSC members and is encouraging those with expiring terms to reapply.”We are taking an inclusive approach to filling future BOSC appointments and welcome all applicants from all relevant scientific and technical fields,” Graham said.But the first round sparked backlash from congressional Democrats and accusations that Pruitt is seeking to make room for industry representatives who will undercut the integrity of the board’s work.”This says to me that they do not want objective science,” Peter Meyer, an economist who resigned in protest last month, said in an interview this morning.Reporter Kevin Bogardus contributed.Reprinted from Greenwire with permission from E&E News. Copyright 2017. E&E provides essential news for energy and environment professionals at www.eenews.net By Sean Reilly, E&E NewsJun. 20, 2017 , 1:30 PM EPA axes 38 more science advisers, cancels panel meetings Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country This says to me that they do not want objective science. Emailcenter_img Gage Skidmore/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0) Because of the need to reconstitute the board, EPA is also canceling all subcommittee meetings planned for late summer and fall, Kavlock said.”We are hopeful that an updated BOSC Executive Committee and the five subcommittees can resume their work in 2018 and continue providing ORD with thoughtful recommendations and comments,” he wrote in urging departing members to reapply.The board, whose members are chosen by Pruitt, advises EPA on technical and management issues related to its research programs. First-term board members typically receive a second three-year reappointment. Last month, however, Pruitt broke with that tradition in opting not to renew the appointments of nine BOSC members. The new round of non-renewals will bite much deeper, BOSC Executive Committee Chairwoman Deborah Swackhamer, a University of Minnesota science professor, indicated in an email today to E&E News.Of 49 remaining subcommittee members, 38 will not be renewed at the end of August, leaving a total of 11, she said. None of the subcommittees will have a chair or vice chair, Swackhamer said, while the executive committee will have three members. While EPA is already seeking nominations to fill out the board, the deadline is the end of next week, she noted. 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