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News and Opinion

INTERIOR HALTS SELECTION OF SCIENTISTS FOR PEER REVIEW OF WOLF DELISTING PROPOSAL

by PHIL TAYLOR - E&E Reporter, August 12, 2013
The Interior Department is putting the brakes on a scientific peer review of its proposal to remove Endangered Species Act protections for wolves after discovering it had improper knowledge of the scientists who would be participating in the review.

The Fish and Wildlife Service was able to deduce which scientists its contractor AMEC was proposing to review the delisting proposal, a fact that runs afoul of the agency's peer review standards, an FWS spokesman said.

The peer review selection process has been put on hold pending further review, said the spokesman, Gavin Shire.
"We've decided that [it] doesn't meet the standard for independent peer review selections," he said.

The decision is likely to come as a relief to wolf advocates who had criticized the agency for requesting that AMEC exclude from the peer review three scientists who had signed a May 21letter raising scientific objections to a leaked wolf delisting proposal (Greenwire, Aug. 8).

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