Interior IG Likely To Probe Controversy Over Calif. Oyster Farm

"The Interior Department's inspector general appears likely to join the growing scrutiny over whether the National Park Service falsified data in an environmental review of a California oyster farm."

"Scientific integrity officials at Interior -- which houses NPS -- are already reviewing allegations that officials purposely misled the public by using 17-year-old data from New Jersey police boats to represent sound levels at the farm. The numbers appeared in a draft environmental impact statement that NPS developed to help determine whether to renew the farm's lease in a national wilderness area (Greenwire, March 27).

But yesterday, scientist Corey Goodman submitted a formal complaint to Interior IG Mary Kendall, asserting that the Park Service 'should not be involved with an investigation of itself.' In recent weeks, he said, NPS Scientific Integrity Officer Gary Machlis restricted access to sound files from a microphone that was placed near the farm in 2009 and 2010. That data was used in a study referenced in the draft EIS."

Emily Yehle reports for Greenwire April 25, 2012.

Source: Greenwire, 04/26/2012