A new classified report by the U.S. Energy Department has concluded with “low confidence” that it is plausible the COVID-19 pandemic originated from a laboratory leak, two sources familiar with the U.S. government’s pandemic origins investigation tell CBS News.
It was not clear if the “low confidence” assessment by the Department of Energy reflected weak data or the quantity of information, but it has nevertheless rekindled an ongoing debate that continues to roil the political, scientific and intelligence communities.
The Department of Energy report was recently shared with a limited number of lawmakers. The department operates a network of national labs that include some of the government’s most qualified biologists handling bioscience and biotechnology research.
While the report is classified, the sources told CBS News they believe it may be independent from an earlier analysis performed by the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Livermore Labs that pointed toward a potential accidental …