Smith, Stewart Demand Release of EPA Secret Data Behind Air Regulations

Jun 12, 2013

Washington, D.C. – House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and Environment Subcommittee Chairman Chris Stewart (R-Utah) today sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Acting Administrator Robert Perciasepe demanding the release of data underpinning costly new air quality rules. 

On March 4, 2013, Chairman Smith wrote to Gina McCarthy, EPA’s Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation and the President’s nominee to become the next Administrator, requesting the release of underlying data that EPA has relied on to support multiple air regulations. Today’s letter criticizes the fact that EPA has failed to provide the data and continues to rely on it for new regulations even after the National Research Council has cautioned against using them in its 2004 report.

“Throughout this process, EPA has responded to our questions in a cavalier manner, hoping perhaps we were not reading the NRC reports carefully or were simply unaware of the law or guidance governing data access,” Chairmen Smith and Stewart wrote. “Current law and OMB guidance are clear in requiring EPA to obtain and release the data.  The EPA’s continued refusal to comply with this Committee’s oversight request undermines the credibility of its regulations.” 

The letter continues, “EPA officials should justify their agenda through an open and transparent process that is based on good science, if they can. EPA has projected that its upcoming ozone standard will be the most costly environmental regulation in U.S. history.  Working families will bear these costs.  They have a right to know what scientific data supports EPA’s claims.”  

The Chairmen urged EPA to respond by July 8, 2013 in order to avoid formal Committee action.

The full letter can be found HERE.