from Steve Milloy at the WSJ, A Step Toward Scientific Integrity at the EPA:
The most prominent of the EPA’s myriad boards of outside advisers are the Science Advisory Board and the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee, or CASAC. Mostly made up of university professors, these boards also frequently draw members from consulting firms and activist groups. Only rarely do members have backgrounds in industry. All EPA boards are governed by the Federal Advisory Committee Act, which requires that they be balanced and unbiased. While the EPA is required by law to convene the SAB and CASAC, the agency is not bound by law to heed their advice.
In 1996 two-thirds of the CASAC panel had no financial connection to the EPA. By the mid-2000s, the agency had entirely flipped the composition of the advisory board so two-thirds of its members were agency grantees. Lo and behold, CASAC suddenly agreed with the EPA’s leadership that fine particulates in outdoor air kill. During the Obama years, the EPA packed the CASAC panel. Twenty-four of its 26 members are now agency grantees, with some listed as principal investigators on EPA research grants worth more than $220 million.
This is the consequence of political consensus ruling over scientific inquiry. Scientific objectivity is thwarted by intellectual McCarthyism. Dissent is demonized, careers are destroyed. It is more like religious fanaticism than science. Yet they have been able to brand the right with the pejorative of being anti-science. Moral superiority justifies illiberalism. Obvious conflicts of interests are ignored.
Read the whole article.