Momentum Grows for HONEST Act, EPA SAB Reform
WASHINGTON - The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology announced growing support for H.R. 1430, the “Honest and Open New EPA Science Treatment Act of 2017” (HONEST Act), and H.R. 1431, the “EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act of 2017.” Both pieces of legislation were favorably reported out of committee last week, and are targeted for floor time in coming months. Keep reading to see what they’re saying.
“The HONEST Act and the EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act would improve the transparency and trustworthiness of scientific and technical reviews and information that agencies, including EPA, rely on to justify regulatory actions that can significantly affect society. The American public must have confidence that the scientific and technical data driving regulatory action can be trusted.” - Neil L. Bradley, senior vice president & chief policy officer, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
“The CO2 Coalition supports the purpose and principles of the ‘Honest and Open New EPA Science Treatment Act of 2017’ and the ‘EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act of 2017.’ We would, in fact, support such principles applied on a government-wide basis.” - Will Happer, professor at Princeton; president, CO2 Coalition
“This legislation seeks to reinforce the SAB process as a tool that can help policymakers with complex issues while preventing EPA from muzzling impartial scientific advice. This legislation deserves strong, bipartisan support. We applaud your leadership in this effort and will work with you to ensure passage.” - Zippy Duvall, president, American Farm Bureau Federation
“These bills would ensure an open and honest scientific process by allowing the public access to the science that underpins regulations developed by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and ensuring that scientists advising the EPA on regulatory decisions are not the same scientists receiving EPA grants.” - Michael W. Johnson, president and CEO, National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association
“SBE Council supports solutions that improve the regulatory system to ensure the voice of small businesses and entrepreneurs is heard and considered, that they operate and compete under rational rules, and transparency throughout the regulatory process. The ‘EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act of 2017’ is an important legislative initiative that brings fairness, transparency and objectivity to the SAB and EPA rulemakings.” - Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO, Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council
“The EPA needs to be smarter, more transparent and prudent in terms of how it regulates. The stinging impact of EPA’s regulatory costs on small businesses and the economy demands such transparency. The HONEST Act is a reasonable and simple reform measure that promotes scientific integrity and openness. All members of Congress should support these principles.” - Karen Kerrigan, president and CEO, Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council
“PCA supports these bills because they would improve fairness and transparency in the regulatory process, while promoting use of the best available science….The SAB Reform Act would improve the Science Advisory Board by ensuring balance among its members and providing better public access to scientific information and data.” - A. Todd Johnston, executive vice president, Portland Cement Association
“The HONEST Act would similarly improve transparency and access to information. Scientists reviewing agency studies and rulemakings need a fair chance to evaluate and validate the studies EPA relies on in the rulemaking process….PCA supports the Committees’ efforts to improve accountability, public access, and better science in the EPA rulemaking process.” - A. Todd Johnston, executive vice president, Portland Cement Association
“For too long now, the Environmental Protection Agency has hidden key scientific data from the public and corrupted its own boards of outside science advisors. This subversion of science and the regulatory process has produced costly, job-killing regulations of dubious-to-no merit to public health and the environment. We welcome these bills in the names of transparent government, and unbiased and balanced peer review.” - Craig Richardson, president, Energy & Environment Action Team; Amy Oliver Cooke, executive vice president, Independence Institute; and Kathleen Sgamma, president, Western Energy Alliance
“It is critical that the regulated community and the public have confidence that decisions reached by EPA are grounded in transparent and reproducible science. By ensuring that the EPA utilizes high quality science and shares underlying data used to reach decisions, the HONEST Act can help foster a regulatory environment that will allow the U.S. business of chemistry to continue to develop safe, innovative products that Americans depend on in their everyday lives.” – Cal Dooley, president and CEO, American Chemistry Council
“The Science Advisory Board Reform Act would improve the peer review process – a critical component of the scientific process used by EPA in their regulatory decisions about potential risks to human health or the environment. . . We commend Chairman Smith and Congressman Lucas for their leadership and commitment to advance these important issues.” – Cal Dooley, president and CEO, American Chemistry Council
“The EPA’s Science Advisory Board is a critical link in the EPA’s policy making process and must, therefore, be unbiased and motivated only to seek the best possible policy result based on the best possible, publicly available, verifiable data. Moreover, open, public debate must be encouraged, not discouraged. The goal must be to get the best possible result, which is why the EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act should be enacted. Science used to support or as a basis for regulations or other policies should be based on publicly available scientific and technical data so as to allow for and even encourage independent fact finding and analysis. Transparency is critical to this process. The Honest and Open New EPA Science Treatment Act would accomplish this result.” - V. Bruce Thompson, president, American Exploration and Production Council (AXPC) and Lee O. Fuller, executive vice president, Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA)
To read the full American Chemistry Council release, click here.
To read the full Chamber of Commerce letter, click here.
To read the full Will Happer letter, click here.
To read the full AXPC and IPAA letter, click here.
To read the full National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association letter, click here.
To read the full Portland Cement Association letter, click here.
To read the full letter from Craig Richardson, Amy Oliver Cooke, and Kathleen Sgamma, click here.
To read the full letter from SBEC on H.R. 1430, click here.
To read the full letter from SBEC on H.R. 1431, click here.
To read the full letter from the American Farm Bureau, click here.