In a memorandum published September 10, 2019, Administrator Andrew R. Wheeler has directed the United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) to "aggressively pursue a reduction in animal testing" by prioritizing ongoing efforts and directing existing resources towards new activities to reduce animal testing while ensuring protection of human health and the environment. He also indicated that additional agency resources may be activated to support new cross-office activities.
The memo states that more than 200,00 laboratory animals and $300 million have been saved in recent years as a result of collective efforts to reduce animal testing and that new approach methods (NAMs) have extensive benefits, which, apart from reducing the use of animals, allow the evaluation of more chemicals across a broader range of potential biological effects in a shorter timeframe and using fewer resources "while often achieving equal or greater biological predictivity than current animal models".
Specific commitments formulated in the memo are that EPA will reduce its requests for and funding of live mammal studies by 30% by 2025 and eliminate all live mammal study requests by 2035. Any mammal studies requested or funded after this date will require Administrator approval on a case-by-case basis. The EPA will further strive to exclude any reliance of mammal studies from third parties in its approval processes after January 1, 2035, subject to legal requirements.
The Administrator further requests a joint annual conference on NAMs to be held from 2019 forward organized by the Office of Chemial Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) and the Office of Research and Development (ORD) as a resource on NAM developments to scientists and policy makers.