Definition of United States Environmental Protection Agency


The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA), which was established in 1970, is a federal governmental agency concerned with environmental protection and human health. With power to write and enforce regulations based on laws passed by Congress, the EPA oversees several important environmental sectors, including:

  • Air
  • Endangered species
  • Hazardous waste
  • Land
  • Water

In addition to providing a regulatory framework for various environmental issues, the US EPA also does its own research (as well as providing grants to other research agencies) and provides educational programs to promote their work and greater environmental awareness in the public domain.

The US EPA oversees several important and well-known programs, including:

  • Air quality and radiation
  • Chemical safety and pollution prevention
  • Drinking water safety
  • ENERGY STAR
  • Environmental Impact Statement Review
  • Fuel economy standards
  • Oil pollution
  • Prevention, Pesticides, and Toxic Substances
  • Safer Detergents Stewardship Initiative
  • Solid waste and emergency response
  • WaterSense
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