By Timothy Cama - 05/06/14 09:39 AM EDT
The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) internal watchdog is launching an investigation of the agency’s research into the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska, which led EPA officials to begin the process of blocking the mine’s permit.
EPA’s Office of Inspector General told agency officials in a memo released Monday that its investigation will seek to determine whether EPA “adhered to laws, regulations, policies and procedures” in its evaluation of the mine.
Pebble’s backers accused EPA of a power grab and vowed to fight the agency internally, through lawmakers and in court.
OIG said it launched the investigation based on congressional requests and complaints to OIG’s hotline.
In its initial memo, OIG asked EPA to prepare a list of personnel involved in the assessment, a timeline of the assessment, stakeholders who were involved and an accounting of the costs of the process.