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Court overturns US environment agency’s ‘secret science’ rule


Rule limited use of unpublished scientific evidence in Environmental Protection Agency policymaking

Opponents of a rule introduced by the US Environmental Protection Agency under former US president Donald Trump, which required that only public data be used to inform environmental regulations, have celebrated the overturning of the rule.

On 1 February, a federal judge in Montana approved a request by the EPA itself to scrap the so-called ‘secret science’ rule. The EPA made the request following a court decision that the agency “lacked authorisation to promulgate the rule pursuant to its housekeeping authority”.

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