Right-Wing EPA Conspiracy Theory Collapses
Right wingers who are being used as puppets by the fossil fuel cartel will latch onto any crazy conspiracy theory that fits their “liberal science is out to fool the world into thinking that global warming is real!” Well, yet another of those crazy claims has been demolished:
The Environmental Protection Agency’s internal watchdog found “no evidence” employees used private emails to circumvent public scrutiny, according to a new report.
The audit was released by the EPA’s Office of Inspector General earlier this week, after being requested by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX), chairman of the House Science Committee.
The charge has been floating around conservative media and Republican circles for a while now. The gist is that Lisa Jackson, the head of the EPA from 2009 to 2013, used a secondary agency email called “firstname.lastname@example.org,” and at one point used that email to ask a personal friend — who also happened to be a green energy lobbyist — to contact her personal account. Jackson explained at a hearing that she was asking a friend to move purely personal correspondence over to a more appropriate venue, but critics raised the specter of efforts to hide agency-related business.
The problem is no actual evidence ever emerged that anyone made deliberate efforts to skirt Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) record-keeping. The new Inspector General report confirms that lack: “We found no evidence that the EPA used, promoted or encouraged the use of private ‘non-governmental’ email accounts to circumvent records management responsibilities or reprimanded, counseled or took administrative actions against personnel for using private email or alias accounts for conducting official government business,” the report said. Further, “based only on discussions with these senior officials, the OIG found no evidence that these individuals had used private email to circumvent federal record-keeping responsibilities.”