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Policy Priorities: Current ACS Position Statements

by Linda Wang
March 10, 2014 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 92, Issue 10


All statements are available online at New and revised statements are in red.


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Policy Priorities: Current ACS Position Statements

Energy: Urges policymakers to lead in formulating a comprehensive, forward-thinking, and sustainable energy policy that addresses the needs of the four U.S. energy sectors by weighing national security, economic, and environmental impacts.

Science & Technology in the Budget: Supports predictable and sustainable funding for the basic science agencies and cautions the Administration to focus on the long-term benefits of scientific research rather than on short-term economic impacts such as immediate job creation.

U.S. Business Climate: Supports policies that will make U.S. firms more entrepreneurial and internationally competitive, reforms to the U.S. patent and intellectual property framework that promote innovation, and policies designed to improve technology transfer and commercialization of breakthroughs spurred by federal research investments.

U.S. Innovation & Entrepreneurship: Supports investment in a world-class workforce through education and training, long-term commitments to basic research and technology development, and the development of a sustainable infrastructure for innovation.


Employment Nondiscrimination: Recommends federal legislation to extend employment discrimination protection to include sexual orientation, gender expression, and gender identity.

Health Care: Supports access to affordable, quality health care for all Americans and sets out broad principles intended to guide policy on current health care options.

Importance of Hands-on Laboratory Activities: Supports hands-on activities in education and explores the proper role of computer simulations that mimic laboratory procedures as a useful supplement to them, but not a substitute for them.

Retirement Security: Urges Congress to reduce the regulatory complexity of 401(k) plans available to small-business owners and promote faster vesting and more portable plans.

Science Education: Supports ensuring that all students understand science in accordance with national standards; modernizing learning environments; strengthening science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) teacher education programs; and nurturing students of all backgrounds, including from underrepresented groups, in pursuit of studies and careers in STEM.

Teaching of Evolution: Supports teaching of evolution; opposes alternative, nonscientific theories; and urges states and localities to support high-quality science standards and curricula.


Charitable Donations: Supports tax deductions for charitable contributions and permanent extension of the Individual Retirement Account charitable rollover provisions.

Ensuring Access to High-Quality Science: Supports using sustainable publishing models that provide universal access to scientific research. Supports the 10 principles outlined in the Brussels Declaration on STM Publishing (STM is scientific, technical, and medical), as set forth by the International Association of STM Publishers.

Scientific Freedom: Advocates freedom of scientific exchange and stronger scientific collaboration to benefit humankind.

Visa Restrictions: Supports timely screening for visiting scientists and students and commits to assisting federal agencies with technical expertise.


Biomonitoring: Supports collection of biomonitoring data to better identify, understand, and communicate the potential risks associated with chemical exposures. Encourages the development of biomonitoring methodology to track the fate of chemicals, their exposure pathways, uptake mechanisms, and trends in human exposure.

Chemicals Risk Assessment & Regulatory Decision Making: Supports risk assessments that are based on sound science, are protective of human health and the environment, and include necessary information from the commercial chemical enterprise while confidential business information is protected.

Climate: Reviews the science and recommends action on greenhouse gas reduction and climate-change adaptation strategies. Encourages continued funding for research into the effects of climate change while also emphasizing the importance of educating the public on the issue.

Endocrine Disruption: Endorses expanded education and research as well as the development of more effective methods to reduce the release of endocrine disruptors into the environment and to limit human exposure.

Forensic Science: Calls for scientific rigor, high-quality education, and standards in forensic science and for its integration with the broader scientific community. Backs evaluation and improvement of forensic analytical methods.

Inherently Safer Technologies (ISTs): Endorses federal support for research and development to expand IST options and usage.

Peer Review—Ensuring High-Quality Science: Urges support for scientific peer review processes that evaluate grant applications based on both intellectual merit and broader impacts and that are periodically evaluated for process effectiveness and efficiency and for reviewer freedom from interference in scientific merit assessments.

Regulation of Laboratory Waste: Reviews the pitfalls of regulations meant for large-scale chemical manufacturing being applied to laboratories.

Scientific Insight & Integrity: Supports the use of comprehensive scientific research and analysis to help develop and evaluate policy options. Encourages policies that help the government obtain and apply scientific assessments.

Sustainability of the Chemical Enterprise: Defines the concept of sustainability in the context of the chemical enterprise. Supports government incentives for sustainable technologies.



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