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NOTEBOOK: Thorne decries ‘insult’


We reported recently that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had booted respected University of Iowa occupational health researcher — and EPA grant recipient — Peter Thorne from the EPA science advisory panel he led. 

Now the online publication Reveal, from the Center for Investigative Reporting, http://bit.ly/2Bgxi5a, reports that Thorne considered the move “insulting.” Thorne was the chairman of the Science Advisory Board, but learned from media reports that he was no longer on the panel. 

Thorne and his colleagues had supported strengthening standards for ozone and fine particulates as a way to protect public health.

“With that science,” Thorne told Reveal, “we save lives, and we do it in a cost-effective way for the American people.

“The job of the Science Advisory Board is to ensure that the EPA is using the best science in all its decision-making,” Thorne said. “It’s an insult to fine research programs to say that those of us funded by those programs are not qualified to advise on these issues.”

Reveal found that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt has largely replaced veteran scientists on EPA advisory panels with people who have close ties to industries that are regulated by the agency. 

We reported earlier on Thorne’s removal from the panel. See that story at http://bit.ly/2zcoPTX.

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