Health hazards (1 - 10 of 127 items)
Hazardous Waste Cleanup: Numbers of Contaminated Federal Sites, Estimated Costs, and EPA's Oversight Role
GAO-15-830T: Published: Sep 11, 2015. Publicly Released: Sep 11, 2015.
The Departments of Agriculture (USDA), the Interior, Defense (DOD), and Energy (DOE) have identified thousands of contaminated and potentially contaminated sites on land they manage but do not have a complete inventory of sites, in particular, for abandoned mines. GAO reported in January 2015 that USDA had identified 1,491 contaminated sites and many potentially contaminated sites. However, USDA d...
Chemical Assessments: Agencies Coordinate Activities, but Additional Action Could Enhance Efforts
GAO-14-763: Published: Sep 29, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 29, 2014.
The federal agencies GAO reviewed—the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the National Toxicology Program (NTP), and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)—undertake distinct chemical toxicity assessment activities that differ in type and purpose...
Drinking Water: Characterization of Injected Fluids Associated with Oil and Gas Production
GAO-14-857R: Published: Sep 23, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 23, 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) oversees the Underground Injection Control (UIC) program, including oversight and regulation of injection wells associated with oil and gas production called class II wells. Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, these wells are subject to regulation to protect underground drinking water sources. EPA has approved 39 states to manage their own class II well pro...
Drinking Water: EPA Program to Protect Underground Sources from Injection of Fluids Associated with Oil and Gas Production Needs Improvement
GAO-14-555: Published: Jun 27, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 28, 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) role in the Underground Injection Control (UIC) class II program is to oversee and enforce fluid injection into wells associated with oil and gas production, known as class II wells. EPA has approved 39 states to manage their own class II programs, and EPA regions are responsible for managing the programs in remaining states. EPA regions and states use a...
Uranium Contamination: Overall Scope, Time Frame, and Cost Information Is Needed for Contamination Cleanup on the Navajo Reservation
GAO-14-323: Published: May 5, 2014. Publicly Released: May 5, 2014.
Federal agencies implementing the 2008 5-year plan, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Energy, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), and the Indian Health Service, met the targets in six of the plan's eight objectives, working in cooperation with tribal agencies, including the Navajo Nation Environmental Protection Agency. Reasons agencies met the targets were pri...
Drinking Water: EPA Has Improved Its Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Program, but Additional Action Is Needed
GAO-14-103: Published: Jan 9, 2014. Publicly Released: Feb 10, 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has implemented all of the recommendations GAO made in its May 2011 report to improve the Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR) program. In that report, GAO recommended that EPA (1) monitor for the full 30 contaminants allowed by statute, (2) monitor for most or all contaminants using a more robust monitoring approach, and (3) select sufficiently...
Environmental Health: EPA Has Made Substantial Progress but Could Improve Processes for Considering Children's Health
GAO-13-254: Published: Aug 12, 2013. Publicly Released: Sep 11, 2013.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made substantial progress in addressing more than half of the recommendations GAO made in a January 2010 report concerning the agency's efforts to protect children's health. Specifically, EPA has fully implemented five of the eight recommendations made by GAO. For example, for a recommendation that EPA ensure that its strategic plan expressly articulat...
Chemical Assessments: An Agencywide Strategy May Help EPA Address Unmet Needs for Integrated Risk Information System Assessments
GAO-13-369: Published: May 10, 2013. Publicly Released: Jun 10, 2013.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not conducted a recent evaluation of demand for Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) toxicity assessments with input from users inside and outside EPA. Specifically, EPA issued a needs assessment report in 2003, which estimated that 50 new or updated IRIS toxicity assessments were needed each year to meet users' needs. However, GAO did not find su...
Environmental Health: Action Needed to Sustain Agencies' Collaboration on Pharmaceuticals in Drinking Water
GAO-11-346: Published: Aug 8, 2011. Publicly Released: Sep 8, 2011.
Drinking water in some metropolitan areas contains concentrations of pharmaceuticals, raising concerns about their potential impact on human health. The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) authorizes the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate contaminants, including pharmaceuticals, in public drinking water systems if they may adversely affect human health among other criteria. Pharmaceutica...
Hazardous Waste: Early Goals Have Been Met in EPA's Corrective Action Program, but Resource and Technical Challenges Will Constrain Future Progress
GAO-11-514: Published: Jul 22, 2011. Publicly Released: Aug 25, 2011.
Years of industrial development generated hazardous waste that, when improperly disposed of, poses risks to human health and the environment. To mitigate these risks, Congress passed the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 (RCRA). Subtitle C of RCRA, as amended, requires owners or operators to take corrective actions to clean up contamination at facilities that treat, store, or dispose...