SEJ Urges EPA Press Office To Answer Reporters' Questions

The Society of Environmental Journalists has urged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to answer reporters' questions directly, rather than referring them to published articles by their favored media.

In a letter sent April 3, 2018, SEJ President Bobby Magill wrote to EPA spokesperson Liz Bowman about an incident that arose from news of proposed changes in EPA rules for use of science.

SEJ also objected to EPA citing a four-year-old report on press-office problems during the Obama administration as evidence of a putative "vast improvement" in press access under the Trump/Pruitt administration. "It is false and entirely inconsistent with SEJ member experience to claim that the EPA is affording reporters 'an unprecedented amount of access'," Magill wrote.

In complaining about the response to media inquiries, SEJ joins the National Association of Science Writers.

"When the EPA declines to answer reporters’ queries with swift, direct, accurate and substantive answers, it severely limits the public’s access to information it deserves to have," Magill wrote.

The full text of SEJ's letter is here.

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