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As of June 17, 2020, there are 4969 open recommendations, of which 518 are priority recommendations. Recommendations remain open until they are designated as Closed-implemented or Closed-not implemented.
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Recommendation: To ensure that EPA maximizes its limited resources and addresses the statutory, regulatory, and programmatic needs of EPA program offices and regions when IRIS toxicity assessments are not available, and once demand for the IRIS Program is determined, the EPA Administrator should direct the Deputy Administrator, in coordination with EPA's Science Advisor, to develop an agencywide strategy to address the unmet needs of EPA program offices and regions that includes, at a minimum: (1) coordination across EPA offices and with other federal research agencies to help identify and fill data gaps that preclude the agency from conducting IRIS toxicity assessments, and (2) guidance that describes alternative sources of toxicity information and when it would be appropriate to use them when IRIS values are not available, applicable, or current.
Agency: Environmental Protection Agency Status: Open Priority recommendation
Comments: As of February 2020, IRIS program officials indicated that they are building capacity for applying systematic review in chemical assessments. We reported in March 2019 that staff from the IRIS program were communicating more frequently with EPA program and regional offices about program and regional office needs and the IRIS program's ability to meet those needs. While ORD's newly-implemented survey process helps identify a limited number of the highest priority needs for program and regional offices, we also reported in March 2019 that program and regional officials told us that they still need far more chemical assessments than the IRIS program currently produces, and they do not have EPA-wide guidance on what sources to use when IRIS assessments are not available. One program office has developed its own prioritized list of sources for chemical assessments when IRIS assessments are not available, and other offices follow similar guidelines, though none officially. EPA leadership needs to provide documentation showing an agency-wide strategy that includes identifying data gaps and guidance on alternative sources of toxicity information when IRIS values are not available, applicable, or current.