CEI’s Director of the Center for Energy and Environment Myron Ebell responded to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s announcement today of changes in how the agency fills its numerous advisory boards:
“CEI strongly supports EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt’s sensible and long overdue reforms of the agency’s numerous advisory boards. The scientific advice the Administrator receives from these boards must be objective and free from even the appearance of conflicts of interest. The fact that some of the EPA’s advisory boards are filled with members whose research receives millions of dollars of funding from the EPA is an obvious conflict of interest that should never have been allowed to develop. Advice from people who are financially dependent on those they are advising may of course in many instances be sound, but it will always be suspect.
“Administrator Pruitt is to be congratulated for ending this endemic practice, however, these reforms could be undone by a future Administrator who is interested in hearing only the advice that he wants to hear. For that reason, we urge the Congress to enact legislation that codifies these reforms of the EPA advisory boards.”