U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), who chairs the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, recently wrote to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy about the nominees for the EPA’s chartered Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC).
“EPA’s record for ensuring geographic diversity on its advisory panels has been lacking under the Obama Administration,” Inhofe wrote. “As for the current seven-member chartered CASAC, there are no members from EPA Regions 2, 4, 6, 7, or 8. In fact, over the course of this Administration, EPA has not appointed a single person from EPA Regions 6, 7, or 8 to serve on the chartered CASAC…[T]here is no reason for EPA to overlook well-qualified candidates from these areas that would clearly balance the panel with respect to geographic diversity.”
CASAC advises the EPA on scientific matters surrounding the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). In addition to criticizing the current nominee list’s lack of geographic diversity, Inhofe also called for greater turnover in CASAC members.
“[T]he current chartered CASAC includes four of seven members that previously served on the chartered CASAC,” Inhofe wrote. "In the interest of showing a good faith effort to ensure fresh perspectives and balance on the panel, I urge you to choose among the other expert candidates whom have not served on the chartered CASAC.”