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Report Criticizes EPA's 2008 Perchlorate in Drinking Water Decision

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Food Safety page, Health Issues page, Environment and Climate Resource page, and our Percholate page.

The Bush White House played a role in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's controversial 2008 decision not to regulate the drinking water contaminant perchlorate, according to a congressional watchdog agency.

In a report released Tuesday, the U.S. Government Accountability Office concludes that the EPA deviated from its customary scientific analysis in reaching the decision and says that "according to key EPA scientists, the agency mischaracterized important scientific findings on the sensitivity of various age groups to perchlorate exposure."

The nonpartisan GAO found that the Office of Management and Budget, which reports directly to the president, edited the 2008 determination. "Overall, the changes EPA made in response to OMB's extensive comments through the external review process downplayed the health risks of exposure to perchlorate and presented EPA's conclusions with greater certainty than key EPA scientists stated they were comfortable supporting," the report states.