EPA scraps controversial pesticide study

Just two days after Senate Democrats announced they would block Stephen Johnson’s confirmation as U.S. EPA administrator until the contentious Children’s Health Environmental Exposure Research Study was cancelled, Johnson bowed to pressure, reversed the agency’s previous wait-and-see position, and pulled the plug. The creepily acronymed CHEERS would have given a group of low-income families in Florida $970 and a camcorder in exchange for exposing their small children to pesticides and taping the results. Sens. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) have said they will no longer block a vote on Johnson’s confirmation. Says Johnson, “I am committed to ensuring that EPA’s research is based on sound science with the highest ethical standards.” Cheers to that.