Call of the Day: Support Science at the EPA and the Interior Department

Today’s call has three options- you can call your representative, your senators OR both! It’s up to you! 

A lot has happened this week, and it's been lost in the hubbub that “EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt decided to replace half of the members on key scientific review boards, while Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is “reviewing the charter and charge” of more than 200 advisory boards, committees and other entities both within and outside his department.”

While the EPA is arguing that not renewing these contracts is merely to break with the previous administration, who they select to replace them will have major consequences on US environmental policy.  (Read more here and here) – especially since Pruitt will likely fill the positions with oil and gas industry insiders.  We need to show both agencies that we will hold them accountable for their decisions.

WHO TO CALL: 

Rep. Steve Scalise (1st District) Washington: (202) 225-3015 Metairie: (504) 837-1259

Rep. Cedric Richmond (2nd District) Washington: (202) 225-6636 New Orleans: (504)288-3777

Because of how Congressional districts are drawn, New Orleans residents have either Richmond or Scalise as their representative.  If you don't know who your representative is, you can look it up by entering your home address on the U.S. House of Representatives website.

Sen. Bill Cassidy - in DC at (202) 224-5824, and in Metairie at (504) 838-0130

Sen. John Kennedy - in DC at (202) 224-4623, and in Lafayette at (337) 269-5980

Reminders: Identify where you're calling from (town and zip code is fine) so they know you're an actual constituent.  Only call your own representative.  Be concise - the office will get through more calls that way.  Be polite and don't argue with the staffer - they don't set policy. If you get a voicemail, then leave a message.  And if you get a busy signal -- call back later!

Sample script -

Hi, my name is [Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from]. I don't need a response. 

I am calling on the Senator/Representative to speak out against the decision not to renew the contract of many scientists on the Board of Scientific Counselors (BOSC) at the EPA, and Sec. Zinke’s decision to freeze the work of many advisory committees.  These actions risk politicizing work which should be based on scientific principles, not ideology.

Thank you for your time, and your hard work answering the phones.

BONUS ACTION

Call the agencies as well and let them know how you feel!

Department of the Interior/Secretary Zinke's office: 1-202-601-3839

EPA/ Secretary Pruitt’s office: 202-564-4700

This call is courtesy of Indivisible Metairie.