March 28, 2017
United States House
Washington, DC 20515
Re: Oppose H.R 1430 and H.R 1431- Attacks on Science and Public Health
On behalf of our millions of members, the League of Conservation Voters (LCV) works to turn environmental values into national, state, and local priorities. Each year, LCV publishes the National Environmental Scorecard, which details the voting records of members of Congress on environmental legislation. The Scorecard is distributed to LCV members, concerned voters nationwide, and the media.
LCV urges you to vote NO on H.R. 1430 and H.R. 1431. These two bills are backdoor attempts to undermine the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to use science in decision-making and obstruct the process for developing effective public health safeguards.
H.R. 1430, the “HONEST Act”, would endanger public health by making it extremely difficult for the EPA to use the best available science. The bill contains favorable exemptions for industry and would restrict the health studies that the EPA is able to use by requiring that data is shared with anyone willing to sign a vague confidentiality agreement. These provisions would severely limit the EPA’s ability to use data that includes studies with confidential health information. These types of studies are the basis for the best research on pollution’s effects on people, but include individual health records that are legally required to remain confidential. H.R. 1430 would cripple the EPA’s ability to develop effective public health safeguards by forcing them to disregard the results of these studies, resulting in less protective standards.
H.R. 1431, the “EPA Science Advisory Board Reform Act of 2017”, would undermine the ability of the Science Advisory Board to provide independent, objective, and credible scientific advice to the EPA. This bill would facilitate greater industry influence of the Scientific Advisory Board by weakening conflict-of-interest protections while unnecessarily and arbitrarily limiting the participation of subject experts. Additionally, new burdens imposed on the Board and provisions that allow industry to significantly prolong the Board’s scientific review process would delay key public health and environmental protections.
These two bills would significantly undermine the EPA’s ability to protect public health and the environment. LCV urges you to REJECT H.R. 1430 and H.R. 1431 and will consider including votes on these bills in the 2017 Scorecard. If you need more information, please call my office at (202) 785-8683 and ask to speak with a member of our Government Relations team.