Environmental Justice / EPA

Trump’s pick for EPA Safety Chief argued kids are less sensitive to toxins

(Michael Dourson, nominated by President Donald Trump to oversee the Environmental Protection Agency’s chemical safety programs, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Sept. 14, 2017. Credit: Al Drago/The New York Times/Redux)

NEW YORK, NY — “Michael Dourson, the toxicologist who will be the subject of a confirmation hearing on Wednesday for what many consider the second most powerful post at the Environmental Protection Agency, has been hired by industry to consult on at least 30 of the chemicals he may be responsible for reviewing if he assumes office.

Dourson’s consulting company, Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment, or TERA, was paid by Dow Chemical, CropLife America, the American Chemistry Council, the American Petroleum Institute, Koch Industries, and other companies and industry groups to study dozens of chemicals. The evaluations TERA produced consistently failed to recognize threats that were clear to scientists and regulators not on the companies’ payrolls.

If confirmed as director of the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, Dourson will be in a position to set safety levels for many of the same chemicals his company was paid to defend, including nine pesticides scheduled for scrutiny and 20 industrial compounds that may be evaluated under the recently updated chemical safety law.”

— Sharon Lerner, The Intercept

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