Washington, D.C. – The following statement was issued by Janis Searles Jones at Ocean Conservancy, on the finalization of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) “Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science” rule:
“Today, the outgoing Trump administration finalized a rule that would limit the types of scientific data the EPA can use when making decisions that impact our health and our environment. This rule is not about better science or transparency – it is the continuation of the egregious anti-ocean and anti-science agenda that favors polluters over people – a hallmark of the Trump administration.
“The new rule would prohibit the use of confidential data – such as studies that measure the human health impacts of pollution exposure – in EPA’s rule-making processes, jeopardizing our ability to enforce laws and regulations that limit the pollutants entering our air and water. Additionally, the proposal would allow the EPA Administrator to cherry-pick the information it uses to make decisions, circumventing legal requirements to rely on the best available science.
“This rule will not result in better results for people or the communities we call home, or the places we love. Instead, it can allow regulators to selectively ignore science and create a biased process that favors politics over science. This flawed approach will result in negative consequences for our health and the health of our ocean, coasts and waterways – and will likely have a disproportionate impact on communities of color.
“We look forward to working with the incoming Biden administration and new EPA leadership to rescind this rule, re-establishing the critical role science plays in protecting our health and our planet.”