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Report Details Attacks on Federal Science, Urges Congressional Oversight

A new report by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) asserts that the Trump Administration has sidelined science when making critical decisions.  The report details an extensive list of instances where science was undermined in the first two years of the Administration.  The report, “The State of Science in the Trump Era,” urges Congress to investigate such policies and decisions and pass legislation to reinforce the role of science at federal agencies.

UCS lists 80 examples of “attacks on science” across agencies, ranging from censorship of scientific findings, sidelining science advisory committees, restricting conference attendance, and halting, editing, or suppressing studies.  A significant proportion of the listed incidents occurred at the Environmental Protection Agency.
 
“The administration is trying to accomplish its goals by pushing science out of the process,” said Jacob Carter, lead author on the report and a research scientist at UCS.  “Science is being silenced, in a truly unprecedented way — and we’re all paying the cost.”
 
The report offers detailed recommendations for Congress to use its oversight powers to ensure that policy decisions are supported by scientific evidence and urges lawmakers to investigate the possibility of “inappropriate corporate influence”.  “For the first time in two years, we could see some meaningful checks and balances in Washington,” said Carter, referring to Democrats taking control of the House of Representatives after the 2018 midterm elections.  “There’s a lot of damage to undo, but we have a roadmap to get there.”

(American Institute of Biological Sciences)