Environmental law (61 - 70 of 332 items)
Chemical Regulation: Approaches in the United States, Canada, and the European Union
GAO-06-217R: Published: Nov 4, 2005. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2005.
Chemicals are used to produce items widely used throughout society, including consumer products such as cleansers, paints, plastics, and fuels, as well as industrial solvents and additives. While chemicals play an important role in everyday life, some may be harmful to human health and the environment. Some chemicals, such as lead and mercury, are highly toxic at certain doses and need to be regul...
Federal Water Requirements: Challenges to Estimating the Cost Impact on Local Communities
GAO-06-151R: Published: Nov 30, 2005. Publicly Released: Nov 30, 2005.
Under the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, commonly referred to as the Clean Water Act, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has responsibility for protecting public health and welfare, as well as the integrity of our nation's waters. Federal water requirements under these acts affect facilities providing the most basic services at the local level, includin...
Indian Tribes: EPA Should Reduce the Review Time for Tribal Requests to Manage Environmental Programs
GAO-06-95: Published: Oct 31, 2005. Publicly Released: Oct 31, 2005.
The Clean Water, Safe Drinking Water, and Clean Air Acts authorize the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to treat eligible Indian tribes in the same manner as a state (referred to as TAS) for implementing and managing environmental programs on Indian lands. Some states are concerned that tribes receiving authority to manage these programs may set standards that exceed the state standards and h...
Invasive Species: Progress and Challenges in Preventing Introduction into U.S. Waters Via the Ballast Water in Ships
GAO-05-1026T: Published: Sep 9, 2005. Publicly Released: Sep 9, 2005.
Numerous invasive species have been introduced into U.S. waters via ballast water discharged from ships and have caused serious economic and ecologic damage. GAO reported in 2002 that at least 160 nonnative aquatic species had become established in the Great Lakes since the 1800s--one-third of which were introduced in the past 30 years by ballast water and other sources. The effects of such specie...
Environmental Liabilities: EPA Should Do More to Ensure That Liable Parties Meet Their Cleanup Obligations
GAO-05-658: Published: Aug 17, 2005. Publicly Released: Aug 17, 2005.
The burden of cleaning up Superfund and other hazardous waste sites is increasingly shifting to taxpayers, particularly since businesses handling hazardous substances are no longer taxed under Superfund and the backlog of sites needing cleanup is growing. While key environmental laws rely on the "polluter pays" principle, the extent to which liable parties cease operations or restructure--such as...
Environmental Justice: EPA Should Devote More Attention to Environmental Justice When Developing Clean Air Rules
GAO-05-289: Published: Jul 25, 2005. Publicly Released: Aug 4, 2005.
Executive Order 12898 made achieving "environmental justice" part of the mission of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal agencies. According to EPA, environmental justice involves fair treatment of people of all races, cultures, and incomes. EPA developed guidance for considering environmental justice during the development of rules under the Clean Air Act and other activiti...
Clean Water Act: Improved Resource Planning Would Help EPA Better Respond to Changing Needs and Fiscal Constraints
GAO-05-721: Published: Jul 22, 2005. Publicly Released: Aug 2, 2005.
Federal and state fiscal constraints may jeopardize past and future accomplishments resulting from the Clean Water Act (the act). In this environment, it is important to manage available resources as efficiently as possible and to identify future human capital needs, including the size of the workforce and its deployment across the organization. GAO was asked to determine (1) the extent to which t...
Chemical Regulation: Options Exist to Improve EPA's Ability to Assess Health Risks and Manage Its Chemical Review Program
GAO-05-458: Published: Jun 13, 2005. Publicly Released: Jul 13, 2005.
Chemicals play an important role in everyday life, but some may be harmful to human health and the environment. Chemicals are used to produce items widely used throughout society, including consumer products such as cleansers, paints, plastics, and fuels, as well as industrial solvents and additives. However, some chemicals, such as lead and mercury, are highly toxic at certain doses and need to b...
Clean Air Act: EPA Has Completed Most of the Actions Required by the 1990 Amendments, but Many Were Completed Late
GAO-05-613: Published: May 27, 2005. Publicly Released: Jun 27, 2005.
While air quality in the United States has steadily improved over the last few decades, more than a hundred million Americans continue to live in communities where pollution causes the air to be unhealthy at times, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The Clean Air Act, first passed in 1963, was last reauthorized and amended in 1990, when new programs were created and changes we...
Clean Air Act: Emerging Mercury Control Technologies Have Shown Promising Results, but Data on Long-Term Performance Are Limited
GAO-05-612: Published: May 31, 2005. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2005.
In March 2005, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a rule that will limit emissions of mercury--a toxic element that causes neurological problems--from coal-fired power plants, the nation's largest industrial source of mercury emissions. Under the rule, mercury emissions are to be reduced from a baseline of 48 tons per year to 38 tons in 2010 and to 15 tons in 2018. In the rule, EPA s...