(The Daily Caller) -- A government watchdog group has obtained documents detailing how the EPA exposed children as young as 10 to deadly air pollutants without disclosing the full risks of the substances.
Government watchdogs say these EPA-backed studiescould violate California state and federal law, because children were exposed to diesel exhaust in experiments with no health benefits to the subjects.
Between 2003 and 2010, the EPA backed experiments done at the University of Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles that exposed children aged 10 to 15 to diesel exhaust — an air pollutant which the EPA and the California Air Resources Board says has no safe exposure limit.
CARB found in 1998 that based “on available scientific information” there is no “level of diesel exhaust exposure below which no carcinogenic effects are anticipated has not been identified.” This statement was made by CARB six years before the EPA-backed studies took place. The EPA lists diesel exhaust as a “likely” carcinogen.
“Not only has EPA been caught violating the letter and spirit of virtually every national and international code, law and regulation for the protection of human subjects in medical experiments developed since World War II,” said David Schnare, an attorney with the Energy and Environmental Law Institute, the group that has released the documents. “They have done so in shocking style, abusing the most vulnerable people of all, children.”
“Compounding the basic villainy of the experimentation itself,” Schnare added, “is that the USC/UCLA researchers failed to warn the parents and children how dangerous EPA and CARB had determined diesel exhaust to be. So there was no informed consent as required by law.”
Researchers sprayed diesel exhaust up the noses of 20 children to see what happened to them after being exposed to the substance. But these experiments have no direct health benefits to the study “except for learning how well your body can cope with pollution,” according to an application for one of the experiments.
Schnare said these experiments violated the Nuremberg Code, which has been adopted in California and federal regulations as the Common Rule. In California, violating medical experimentation laws can result in fines and/or imprisonment.
Documents showing the EPA was exposing children to diesel exhaust were obtained by the website JunkScience.com through a Freedom of Information Act Request. JunkScience.com and EPA critics say the agency is being negligent or hiding the real effects of diesel exhaust on human health to advance a regulatory agenda.