The politics of creating data

IRIS is a main USEPA database on toxicity. Here’s how difficult it is to add data to this database:

(1) a Federal Register announcement of EPA’s IRIS agenda and call for scientific information from the public on the selected substances, (2) a search of the current scientific literature, a Federal Register announcement that the literature search is available on the IRIS internet site, and a call to submit additional scientific information on the substance, (3) development of a draft Toxicological Review or other assessment document , (4) internal peer consultation, (5) internal Agency Review, (6) Science Consultation with other Federal agencies and White House offices, (7) external peer review and public comment, (8) final internal Agency Review, Interagency Science Discussion and ORD management approval, and (9) posting on the IRIS database.

It’s like peer-review crossed with double-secret probation.