EPA

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United States Environmental Protection Agency

Contents

History

"Born in the wake of elevated concern about environmental pollution, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency opened its doors in downtown Washington, D.C., on December 2, 1970. EPA was established to consolidate in one agency a variety of federal research, monitoring, standard-setting and enforcement activities to ensure environmental protection. EPA's mission is to protect human health and to safeguard the natural environment—air, water, and land—upon which life depends. For more than 30 years, the EPA has been working for a cleaner, healthier environment for the American people.

  • 1970s - EPA is created. Congress passes modern environmental statutues, such as Clean Water Act and Clean Air Act. EPA sets early human health exposure levels. The Supreme Court affirms EPA's role in environmental protection enforcement.
  • 1980s - The Superfund law is passed to clean up old, abandonded waste sites. EPA and communities begin emergency response planning in the event of environmental accidents. State begin to run their own hazardous waste programs. Risk science begins to help EPA set priorities.
  • 1990s - The Clean Air Act Amendments set the stage for further protections, such as dust and soot. Pollution prevention reduces pollution before it begins. EPA partners with companies to explore and test innovative, voluntary approaches to environmental protection.
  • 2000s - Mercury emissions, visibility rules further improve air quality. EPA responds to 9/11. Clean diesel engines cut emissions from trucks, off-road equipment, and especially school buses."

The Mission

"The mission of EPA is to protect human health and to safeguard the natural environment -- air, water and land -- upon which life depends.

The EPA was established in 1970 so that the government would have just one agency running everything to do with environmental protection.

EPA's purpose is to ensure that:

  • all Americans are protected from significant risks to human health and the environment where they live, learn and work;
  • national efforts to reduce environmental risk are based on the best available scientific information;
  • federal laws protecting human health and the environment are enforced fairly and effectively;
  • environmental protection is an integral consideration in U.S. policies concerning natural resources, human health, economic growth, energy, transportation, agriculture, industry, and international trade, and these factors are similarly considered in establishing environmental policy;
  • all parts of society -- communities, individuals, businesses, and state, local and tribal governments -- have access to accurate information sufficient to effectively participate in managing human health and environmental risks;
  • environmental protection contributes to making our communities and ecosystems diverse, sustainable and economically productive; and
  • the United States plays a leadership role in working with other nations to protect the global environment."


What they do:

  • Regulations- After congress writes an environmental law the EPA creates a regulation and helps companies figure out how they can comply to the regulation. They set the national standard in environmental protection.
  • Grants- Most of the EPA's budget goes to giving grants to companies and researchers to help figure out what more needs to be doen to protect the environment.
  • Partnerships- the EPA sponsors many partnerships in order to make sure that more and more people are protecting our earth.
  • Publications- The EPA wants to spread environment news to the public.

Underground Injection Control Program

The UIC Program is responsible for regulating the construction, operation, permitting, and closure of injection wells that place fluids underground for storage or disposal. The EPA website provides information for owners and operators of injection wells and state regulators on how to safely operate injection wells to prevent contamination of underground drinking water resources.

UIC Regulations are found at: 40 CFR 144-48


References

  1.  "EPA"
  2.  "NEPA Compliance"

epa.gov