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In 1978, Congress directed the EPA to establish an SAB to provide scientific advice to the Administrator. The SAB is authorized to:

  • review the quality and relevance of the scientific and technical information being used by the EPA or proposed as the basis for Agency regulations;
  • review EPA research programs and plans;
  • provide science advice as requested by the EPA Administrator, and
  • advise the agency on broad scientific matters.

Most preliminary work of the SAB is done by subcommittees or panels focused on various environmental science topics. These groups are chaired by SAB members. Recommendations of subcommittees and panels are transmitted to the SAB for discussion and deliberation. Recommendations are forwarded to EPA only if the SAB determines that it is appropriate.

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SAB charter

The EPA Science Advisory Board (SAB) charter is renewed in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). The SAB was created in 1978 pursuant to the Environmental Research, Development, and Demonstration Authorization Act. The SAB’s charter has been renewed every two years.

Read the full text of SAB's charter.

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History of the SAB

The SAB, in its present form, was established in 1978 by the Environmental Research, Development, and Demonstration Authorization Act (ERDDAA) (42 U.S.C. 4365).

  • Predecessor bodies date back to the early 1970s. In carrying out the mandate of ERDDAA, the SAB provides such scientific advice as may be requested by the Administrator, the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the United States Senate, or the Committees on Science and Technology, Interstate and Foreign Commerce, or Public Works and Transportation of the House of Representatives.
  • Because the Science Advisory Board is a Federal Advisory Committee, it must comply with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) (5 U.S.C. § 10) and related regulations. Consequently, the Board has an approved charter, which must be renewed biennially, announces its meetings in the Federal Register, and provides opportunities for public comment on issues before the Board.

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Science Supporting EPA Decisions

Science Supporting EPA Decisions.pdf

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