The EPA is supposed to be a shining example of benevolent scientific dictatorship. Without the experts at the EPA, we would all poison one another. But now that the EPA is here, we are all safe.
But it doesn’t quite work that way.
Despite recruiting scientists to advocate the politically-decided message and despite cherry-picking which scientists to acknowledge, the EPA’s passion for ruling “policymaking” outstrips their ability to rationalize those rules.
Seven months after being subpoenaed by Congress, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy conceded that her agency does not have – and cannot produce – all of the scientific data used for decades to justify numerous rules and regulations under the Clean Air Act.
In a March 7th letter to House Science, Space and Technology Committee chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.), McCarthy admitted that EPA cannot produce all of the original data from the 1993 Harvard Six Cities Study (HSC) and the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) 1995 Cancer Prevention Study II, which is currently housed at New York University.
Both studies concluded that fine airborne particles measuring 2.5 micrograms or less (PM2.5) – 1/30th the diameter of a human hair – are killing thousands of Americans every year.
These epidemiological studies are cited by EPA as the scientific foundation for clean air regulations that restrict particulate emissions from vehicles, power plants and factories.
So studies that essentially don’t exist are, in theory, justifying clean air regulations.
As you might guess, the EPA resisted admitting this situation.
The full committee [the House Science Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight,], which issued its first subpoena in 21 years last August after being stonewalled by the EPA for two years, wanted the raw data from the studies so that their results could be replicated by independent researchers. (See EPA subpoena.pdf)
However, despite “multiple interactions with the third party owners of the research data in an effort to obtain that data,” McCarthy wrote, some of the data subpoenaed by the committee “are not (and were not) in the possession, custody or control of the EPA, nor are they within the authority to obtain data that the agency identified.”
“EPA has not withheld any data in our possession that is responsive to the subpoena,” McCarthy stated. “The EPA acknowledges, however, that the data provided are not sufficient in themselves to replicate the analyses in the epidemiological studies, nor would they allow for the one to one mapping of each pollutant and ecological variable to each subject.”
The EPA is a grand experiment in unconstitutional government. It is premised on the proposition that we need an unencumbered bureaucracy of immense power to make rules for the common good. What we find is that people who wield such power are not careful to follow the scientific findings. It becomes rule by whim.