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Notice

Request for Nominations of Candidates for the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) Particulate Matter (PM) Panel

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Science Advisory Board (SAB) Staff Office requests public nominations of scientific experts for the CASAC PM Panel. This panel will provide advice through the chartered CASAC on updates to the science and policy assessments supporting the agency's reconsideration of the December 2020 decision to retain the PM National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).

DATES:

Nominations should be submitted by July 16, 2021.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Any member of the public wishing further information regarding this Notice and Request for Nominations may contact Mr. Aaron Yeow, Designated Federal Officer (DFO), SAB Staff Office, by telephone/voice mail at (202) 564-2050 or via email at yeow.aaron@epa.gov.

General information concerning the CASAC can be found on the following website: https://epa.gov/​casac.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background: The CASAC was established pursuant to the Clean Air Act (CAA) Amendments of 1977, codified at 42 U.S.C. 7409(d)(2), to review air quality criteria and NAAQS and recommend to the EPA Administrator any new NAAQS and revisions of existing criteria and NAAQS as may be appropriate. The CASAC shall also: Advise the EPA Administrator of areas in which additional knowledge is required to appraise the adequacy and basis of existing, new, or revised NAAQS; describe the research efforts necessary to provide the required information; advise the EPA Administrator on the relative contribution to air pollution concentrations of natural as well as anthropogenic activity; and advise the EPA Administrator of any adverse public health, welfare, social, economic, or energy effects which may result from various strategies for attainment and maintenance of such NAAQS. As amended, 5 U.S.C., App. Section 109(d)(1) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) requires that EPA carry out a periodic review and revision, as appropriate, of the air quality criteria and the NAAQS for the six “criteria” air pollutants, including PM. The ecological effects of PM will be covered as part of the ongoing review of the secondary NAAQS for oxides of nitrogen, oxides of sulfur, and PM.

The EPA Administrator recently announced his decision to reconsider the December 2020 decision to retain the particulate matter (PM) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). These standards were last revised in 2012. EPA is reconsidering the 2020 decision because available scientific evidence and technical information suggests that the current standards may not be adequate to protect public health and welfare. EPA has requested that CASAC review updates to the science and policy assessments that will supplement the existing record. The CASAC PM Panel will provide advice through the Chartered CASAC.

The CASAC is a Federal advisory committee chartered under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). As a Federal Advisory Committee, the CASAC conducts business in accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) (5 U.S.C. App. 2) and related regulations. The CASAC and the CASAC PM Panel will comply with the provisions of FACA and all appropriate SAB Staff Office procedural policies.

Request for Nominations: The SAB Staff Office is seeking nominations of nationally and internationally recognized scientists with demonstrated expertise and research in the field of air pollution related to criteria pollutants. For the CASAC PM Panel, experts are being sought in the following fields, especially with respect to PM: Air quality and climate responses, atmospheric science and chemistry, toxicology, controlled human exposure studies, epidemiology, biostatistics, exposure assessment/modeling, risk assessment/modeling, and visibility impairment.

Process and Deadline for Submitting Nominations: Any interested person or organization may nominate qualified individuals in the areas of expertise described above. Individuals may self-nominate. Nominations should be submitted in electronic format (preferred) using the online nomination form under “Public Input on Membership” on the CASAC web page at https://epa.gov/​casac. To be considered, all nominations should include the information requested below. EPA values and welcomes diversity. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply regardless of sex, Start Printed Page 33704race, disability or ethnicity. Nominations should be submitted by July 16, 2021.

The following information should be provided on the nomination form: Contact information for the person making the nomination; contact information for the nominee; and the disciplinary and specific areas of expertise of the nominee. Nominees will be contacted by the SABSO and will be asked to provide a recent curriculum vitae and a narrative biographical summary that includes: Current position, educational background; research activities; sources of research funding for the last two years; and recent service on other national advisory committees or national professional organizations. Persons having questions about the nomination process or the public comment process described below, or who are unable to submit nominations through the CASAC website, should contact the DFO, as identified above. The names and biosketches of qualified nominees identified by respondents to this Federal Register notice, and additional experts identified by the SAB Staff Office, will be posted in a List of Candidates on the CASAC website at https://epa.gov/​casac. Public comments on each List of Candidates will be accepted for 21 days from the date the list is posted. The public will be requested to provide relevant information or other documentation on nominees that the SAB Staff Office should consider in evaluating candidates.

For the EPA SAB Staff Office, a balanced review panel includes candidates who possess the necessary domains of knowledge, the relevant scientific perspectives (which, among other factors, can be influenced by work history and affiliation), and the collective breadth of experience to adequately address the charge. In forming this expert panel, the SAB Staff Office will consider public comments on the List of Candidates, information provided by the candidates themselves, and background information independently gathered by the SAB Staff Office. Selection criteria to be used for panel membership include: (a) Scientific and/or technical expertise, knowledge, and experience (primary factors); (b) availability and willingness to serve; (c) absence of financial conflicts of interest; (d) absence of an appearance of a lack of impartiality; (e) skills working in committees, subcommittees and advisory panels; and, (f) for the panel as a whole, diversity of expertise and viewpoints.

Candidates may be asked to submit the “Confidential Financial Disclosure Form for Special Government Employees Serving on Federal Advisory Committees at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency” (EPA Form 3110-48). This confidential form is required for Special Government Employees (SGEs) and allows EPA to determine whether there is a statutory conflict between that person's public responsibilities as an SGE and private interests and activities, or the appearance of a loss of impartiality, as defined by Federal regulation. The form may be viewed and downloaded through the “Ethics Requirements for Advisors” link on the CASAC home page at https://epa.gov/​casac. This form should not be submitted as part of a nomination.

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Thomas H. Brennan,

Director, EPA Science Advisory Board Staff Office.

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[FR Doc. 2021-13498 Filed 6-24-21; 8:45 am]

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