Inconvenient Low Dose Radiation Science Axed Under Obama Administration

Senior Department of Energy executives, several of whom were “Acting” Obama Administration appointees in roles that normally require Senate advice and consent, made decisions that paused unique research into the biological effects of low dose radiation in the United States.

Early research results from the program are arguably sufficient to support decisions with globally important economic, medical and environmental implications, but there is enormous opportunity for returns from continuing the effort to understand exactly how living organisms respond over time to various doses and dose rates of ionizing radiation.

Here is a representative statement heard during discussions with leading radiation biology experts about the elimination of the LDRRP.

I was very disappointed to learn of the cancelling of the DOE LD program. The US had once led the world in this type of research, and is now abandoning this important effort. Thankfully Europe is active in this area still, otherwise lack of knowledge will continue to feed fear and misinformation. We absolutely need to really understand the biological effects of low doses of ionizing radiation. There is too much at stake not to.

Cynthia H. McCollough, PhD, FAAPM, FACR, FAIMBE

Is This Old News, Or An Important Historical Tale?

This is not a scoop or a breaking story. It is a piece designed to provide a new perspective on a story that has already been the subject of a congressional investigation that included a televised Congressional hearing.

There were several news stories issued soon after the release of the congressional investigation (Ex: Energy Dept. Defends Obama’s Climate Action Plan By Firing Honest Scientist Daily Caller, Dec 20, 2016) but there has been little follow up or attention.

Perhaps that is related to the fact that the committee staff released its report on December 20, 2016, probably as one of their last items to complete before the Christmas holidays.

This version of the story is partly based on that staff report and its associated appendices. It has been supplemented with additional research and conversations with key players in the drama. It will be told in several parts.

Original Article Posted on Forbes by Rod Adams, CONTRIBUTOR



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