PFAS Scientific Panel costs (FOI)
PFAS Scientific Panel costs (FOI)Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 22 June 2023.
Prepared internally, no external costs.
How much is the Government of Jersey paying the panellists on the new PFAS scientific Panel?
What are the additional costs of the Panel?
Worldwide, there has been research into the relationship between PFAS exposure and health effects. Experts are consistent in the view that there are likely to be health effects, but much of the evidence has been inconsistent or inconclusive and some studies may be subject to significant bias. PFAS is a highly technical, complicated scientific field and academic researchers are needed to investigate these complex issues and make recommendations about historic environmental contamination. Islanders are keen for government to make progress in this area. The commitment to form a PFAS Scientific Advisory Panel was shared at the PFAS meeting with affected Islanders in December, and has been approved by the Health Minister, Chief Minister, and the Council of Ministers.
In 2023, a total of £127,600 is budgeted for the PFAS Scientific Advisory Panel members. Significant steps were taken to reduce the costs of the panel, including reviewing the number of members and also negotiating the most competitive rates.
The PFAS Scientific Advisory Panel is an independent panel made up of external experts recruited from a global pool of specialists in their field. The purpose of the Panel is to coordinate and provide expert advice on PFAS issues. This is to enable an effective and evidenced based approach to decision making, enabling a sound and informed response to PFAS matters on the Island. The panel is chaired by Dr Steve Hajioff who is independent of the government and PFAS research. This is to provide a robust and balanced overview to the work of the panel.
The following additional costs have been budgeted for in 2023:
- Recruitment - £27,000
- Travel and accommodation allocation - £7,000
- Professional fees - £15,000.
An expert recruitment agency was used to support the specialist candidate search which required a greater depth and targeting into specialist research networks around the world to access global leaders in the field. A significant reduction in fees was negotiated prior to the search commencing.
The Panel members are based in the UK and Europe and therefore a budget allowance is included to facilitate in-person events with Islanders where needed. The Panel meetings are generally held online to reduce costs.
The professional fee allocation is to be used for additional experts who will give evidence on an ad hoc basis to the Panel, which should be more effective in the longer term.