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Internal Review Finds That Pruitt Didn’t Violate EPA Policy

The EPA’s Office of Inspector General ruling deals a blow to the liberal Sierra Club.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s Scientific Integrity Review Panel found that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt didn’t violate the EPA’s Scientific Integrity Policy during an interview in March, according to a statement exclusively obtained by the NTK Network.

The Sierra Club filed a formal complaint with the EPA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) in March, which alleged that Pruitt had violated the EPA’s Scientific Integrity Policy during an interview on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

The interview that the Sierra Club is referring to happened in March, and during the interview Pruitt said that he did not agree with the host’s assessment that is has been proven that carbon is the primary contributor to global warming.

In the Sierra Club’s complaint, they alleged that Pruitt’s comments violated the EPA’s Scientific Integrity Policy.

A Scientific Integrity Review Panel was convened to review Pruitt’s comments, which is “consistent with established Coordination Procedures between the Scientific Integrity Official and the Office of Inspector General.”

The panel concluded that Pruitt’s statement did not violate the Scientific Integrity Policy, and said that “an opinion about science is not a violation of the EPA Scientific Integrity Policy.”

The Scientific Integrity Review Panel’s full ruling:

“In his response, the Administrator expressed his opinion regarding contributors to global warming and called for more debate, review, and analysis as a precursor to any future EPA policy decision on the matter. This expression of opinion, which was not made in a decisional context, is fully within the protections of EPA’s Scientific Integrity Policy and does not violate that Policy. We also note that, in his remarks, the Administrator did not suppress or alter Agency scientific findings.

Expressing an opinion about science is not a violation of the EPA Scientific Integrity Policy. Indeed, the Scientific Integrity Policy – in the spirit of promoting vigorous debate and inquiry – specifically encourages employees to express their opinion should the employee disagree with scientific data, scientific interpretations, or scientific conclusions.”