“Managers and career staff in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention tampered with the assessments of dozens of chemicals to make them appear safer, according to four scientists who work at the agency. The whistleblowers, whose jobs involve identifying the potential harms posed by new chemicals, provided The Intercept with detailed evidence of pressure within the agency to minimize or remove evidence of potential adverse effects of the chemicals, including neurological effects, birth defects, and cancer.
The ongoing issues are evidence that the pressures on chemical assessors within the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention have persisted even under the Biden administration, according to Kyla Bennett, director of science policy at Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, or PEER, an organization that provides support to whistleblowers and helped the scientists draft their disclosure document. “The problems in OCSPP are not due solely to the Trump administration and its appointees,” said Bennett. “The issues faced by our clients occurred before Trump took office, during the Trump years, and continue now.””