New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood is leading a coalition of states, counties and cities opposing the U.S. Environmental Protection and Agency’s science rule.
In a comment submitted to the EPA, the coalition demanded that the agency’s Administrator Andrew Wheeler withdraw its proposal to limit the use of scientific evidence in rule making.
The coalition said the EPA’s proposal violates federal laws such as the Administrative Procedure Act and that it is “arbitrary and capricious.” Underwood and her colleagues also called the proposed rule “harmful and deeply flawed.”
Additionally, they stated that the EPA lacks the authority to promulgate the proposed rule because it is in conflict with multiple statutes, which the agency is in charge of implementing.
Some of these statutes include the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act and Toxic Substances Control Act. Underwood and company said the EPA needs to have access to latest scientific knowledge to effectively implement these laws and protect people and the environment.
Coalition Threatens to Sue EPA
The coalition is prepared to file a lawsuit against the agency if it continues its “misguided effort.”
“The so-called Science Transparency Rule has nothing to do with science and everything to do with special interests,” Underwood said in a statement. “Instead of ensuring that the EPA uses the best available science in its decision making, the proposed rule would do the opposite: censor, exclude and undermine science at the expense of our health and environment.
“If the EPA doesn’t abandon this science censorship plan, we’ll see them in court.”
California Attorney General Xavier Becerra commented, “This is nothing more than a veiled attack on our health and environment.” He vowed that California will “take any action necessary” to hold the agency accountable.