EPA Announces New Science Supporting EPA Decisions Process
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on February 28, 2022, the implementation of a new process by which the Science Advisory Board (SAB) will assess the science that informs decisions regarding EPA proposed rules. EPA states that the new process “will restore opportunities for peer review and strengthen the independence of” SAB. According to EPA, the new Science Supporting EPA Decisions process strengthens peer review at EPA by:
- Restoring SAB’s role by having structured opportunities to conduct peer review of critical scientific and technical actions developed by EPA;
- Strengthening the independence of SAB’s role by scoping and identifying the peer review need for EPA decisions;
- Ensuring EPA considers and develops peer reviewed science early in its rule-making development process; and
- Restoring public faith in EPA by ensuring the use of peer reviewed science to inform decision making.
The process is effective immediately. EPA posted a February 28, 2022, memorandum from Associate Administrator for Policy Victoria Arroyo, Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Research and Development Christopher Frey, and Director of the SAB Staff Office Thomas Brennan that outlines the new process. EPA notes that the memorandum “was issued at the direction of the Administrator and supersedes prior procedures.”