Daily Trends Now
Daily Trends Now

US agency sacks major scientific review board members

US agency sacks major scientific review board members

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt notified half the 18 members of the Board of Scientific Counselors that their terms had ended and would not be renewed.

News of the changes surfaced this weekend when a member of the EPA's Board of Scientific Counselors tweeted that his contract was not being renewed. But with the end of the members' terms, he said the agency wanted a complete vetting of all of those nominated to serve on the board before deciding who serves, rather than simply renewing the appointments of those already on the panel.

Robert Richardson, an ecological economist at Michigan State and member of the Board of Scientific Counselors which reviews research done by EPA scientists, sounded the alarm over the dismissals on Friday, telling his Twitter followers: "Today, I was Trumped".

"We're not going to rubber-stamp the last administration's appointees", Friere told the Washington Post.

The spokesman told The New York Times "The administrator believes we should have people on this board who understand the impact of regulations on the regulated community".

The EPA statement said Pruitt will continue to consult with the agency's ethics counsel to ensure there is no question of impropriety in how it deals with litigation to which Pruitt had been a party as Oklahoma's attorney general. Ponisseril Somasundaran, a chemist at Columbia University who was dismissed from the board, explained that most members of the council are academics. "Instead, they should participate in the same open competitive process as the rest of the applicant pool".

"These reforms will strengthen the public's trust of the science the EPA uses to support its regulations", Science, Space and Technology Committee Chair Texas Rep. Lamar Smith said on the House floor March regarding the bill.

"In the broader view, I suppose it is the prerogative of this administration to set the goals of federal agencies and to appoint members to advisory boards", she added. At a February House hearing, he said the Science Advisory Board members are "rubber stamps who approve all the EPA's regulation". "While I have recused myself from making decisions on specific cases, it is my duty and privilege as the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to actively engage in rulemaking".

But before that, Davenport warn these "dismissed" academics could be replaced with "representatives from industries whose pollution the agency is supposed to regulate", also mentioning proposed budget cuts and web pages on climate programs that were taken down. Critics of President Donald Trump's EPA, including Democratic politicians and environmental groups, have said the administration's actions so far jeopardize research and actions meant to combat climate change and protect public health. The individuals on these boards are appointed based on scientific expertise not politics.

Members of the BOSC Executive Committee, subcommittees, and workgroups represent a distinguished body of scientists and engineers who are recognized experts in their respective fields. "Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is "reviewing the charter and charge" of more than 200 advisory boards, committees, and other entities both within and outside of his department", the Post wrote.


editors' picks

May 08, 2017
Obama in Boston to get political courage award
She echoed the sentiment, saying, "I love my son, Jack, and I would support whatever decision he makes". However, Obama said it does require some courage "to champion the vulnerable and the sick".

May 07, 2017
Facebook reportedly debuting TV-like shows next month
Snapchat has been actively pursuing show deals with numerous same of the same companies as Facebook for its Discover section. And now, multiple sources tell Business Insider that those plans are well under way.

May 06, 2017
Here's What We Know About OnePlus 5 So Far
It is nearly a guarantee that the OnePlus 5 will be powered by Qualcomm's latest and most powerful chipset, the Snapdragon 835 . Branding its phone with the number four could make it less appealing to buyers in markets where tetraphobia is widespread.

May 06, 2017
Up to 2-year ban proposed on unruly passengers
The passengers can appeal to this committee against the ban, and the committee will have to issue the final order within 10 days. Punishment of suspension for unruly behavior applies to domestic carriers, if global carriers want this input, they can use.

May 04, 2017
OnePlus 5 confirmed following official teaser from CEO
Both the LG G6 and the Galaxy S8 have their fingerprint sensor on their backs to accommodate the all-screen design. Perhaps this OnePlus 5 will be the top spec phone for a low price that will really give Apple a run for its money.

May 04, 2017
McDonald's tries harder with its Signature Crafted sandwiches
Dubbed the " Frork ", consider the invention one-part eating utensil and one-part French fry aimed to combat "topping dropping". Customers can call the same toll-free line or visit McDonalds.com to find the nearest participating McDonald's .

May 03, 2017
James Scores 35pts, Leads Cavaliers Past Raptors
Tucker is a wing defender brought on to help defend James. "That was the mystery coming in, how we would come out", James said. That 2016 series ended 4-2 in the Cavs' favor, and Cleveland went on to win the first championship in franchise history.

May 01, 2017
Aaron Sanchez: Aaron Sanchez (finger) exits after one inning
The blister was caused by the fingernail irritating the skin when Sanchez threw, with the curveball the primary aggrieving pitch. He pitched one inning and faced three batters, ultimately luring Evan Longoria into a double-play ball to close out the frame.

May 01, 2017
British heavyweight boxing star Joshua knocks out Klitschko
Joshua weighed in at 250.1 pounds, while Klitschko weighed in at 240.5 pounds. "Anthony was better than I. This fight was there for the taking by either fighter going into Round 11.

April 30, 2017
Kylie Jenner Blasted For Insane Instagram Photoshop
In what's becoming a common occurrence these days, Kylie Jenner found herself catching heat this week over her Instagram uploads.