EPA’s “transparency” rule undermines its own mission to protect public health

The current federal administration, in the middle of a pandemic, is pursuing EPA rule changes that could undermine the Agency’s ability to protect public health. Under the guise of “science transparency,” the new rules would allow the EPA to disregard studies that provide the evidence and rationale behind critical regulation such as clean air and … Continue reading EPA’s “transparency” rule undermines its own mission to protect public health

Texas underestimates cancer risks of ethylene oxide

I know something about ethylene oxide. During my time at the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), I spent over 10 years on the team developing EPA’s cancer assessment of ethylene oxide, and for the last 5 of those years I was the project manager for the assessment.  Published in 2016, after careful analysis and extensive … Continue reading Texas underestimates cancer risks of ethylene oxide

EPA pushes ‘transparency’ rule as science advisors dissent

EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) is meeting June 5-6, 2019 to discuss key issues underlying how the Agency evaluates and uses science in policy decisions. Dr. Tracey Woodruff, Professor and Director at the University of California, San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, gave this statement: Listening to today's EPA meeting with its … Continue reading EPA pushes ‘transparency’ rule as science advisors dissent

The deadly omission in EPA’s Methylene Chloride rule

In October 2017, Drew Wynne, 31, succumbed to methylene chloride fumes while removing paint from the floors of his coffee company. This was almost a year after EPA proposed but refused to finalize a rule to ban methylene chloride paint strippers (“2017 rule”) which could have prevented his death. When EPA finalized their rule in … Continue reading The deadly omission in EPA’s Methylene Chloride rule

EPA assessment should be called Pigment “Violate” the science

One of EPA’s core responsibilities under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) is to protect public health by evaluating chemicals and limiting the risky ones. EPA recently released step one in this process-- its first chemical evaluation since TSCA was reformed in 2016, on the chemical Pigment Violet 29.  Unfortunately, our analysis found alarmingly poor … Continue reading EPA assessment should be called Pigment “Violate” the science

EPA ignoring major risks in chemical assessments

1,4-dioxane is a cancer-causing chemical contaminating drinking water in Michigan, a situation local officials are calling “a slow-motion environmental disaster,” and significant problem with the water supply. Yet, despite such clear and acknowledged dangers, EPA will ignore 1,4-dioxane in people’s drinking water entirely in its health risk evaluation under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). … Continue reading EPA ignoring major risks in chemical assessments

EPA’s unwritten policy on chemical data: don’t ask, don’t tell

There are almost 40,000 chemicals in commerce, and EPA needs to take action to limit those that are dangerous. That’s why the reformed Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) directs EPA to select (through a prioritization process as shown below) 20 “high-priority,” potentially risky chemicals by the end of next year for assessment. To make informed … Continue reading EPA’s unwritten policy on chemical data: don’t ask, don’t tell

Health professionals; scientists oppose “transparency” rule

The Senate Environment and Public Works committee held a hearing on EPA’s “Implementation of Sound and Transparent Science in Regulation.” EPA proposed a rule “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science” on April 30, 2018. In response, Dr. Tracey Woodruff, Professor and Director at the University of California, San Francisco Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, … Continue reading Health professionals; scientists oppose “transparency” rule