Main Topics

I. Home

II. Environmental Threats in Ohio

III. Health Impacts

IV. The Regulatory Agencies

V. Prioritization of Environmental Risks

VI. The Disconnect

VII. Ensuring Participation

VIII. Resolving Environmental Disputes

IX. Conclusion

X. Citizens' Guide to Environmental Protection

XI. About the Green Environmental Coalition

A Handbook for Professionals Serving Socioeconomically Disadvantaged Communities:
Health Professionals
Social Service Professionals

Produced by the Green
Environmental Coalition
in Association with The Ohio Environmental Education Fund

The Regulatory Agencies

So where does the public go to gather information about environmental issues? Environmental regulation in Ohio is divided among several agencies. Due to the complex nature of environmental issues, however, some overlap occurs within the various agencies. The final agency listed below, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, will be the likely contact for most environmental issues. Formal points of contact for the agencies are listed in the Appendix, within the Citizens' Guide .

Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Department of Agriculture
  • The Pesticide Section regulates plant pesticides and investigates their misuse. Empty pesticide containers and unused pesticides can be recycled through the division's Pesticide Container Recycling Program.

    View cached Adobe PDF of the web site at the time of publication: Ohio Department of Agriculture

Ohio Department of Commerce (ODC)
  • As an ODC agency, the Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulation (BUSTR) regulates Ohio's underground storage tank program (UST).
  • BUSTR is charged with the prevention and detection of petroleum releases from USTs (Underground Storage Tanks) and the oversight of their cleanup.

    View cached Adobe PDF of the web site at the time of publication: Ohio Department of Commerce - BUSTR

Ohio Department of Health (ODH)
Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA)
  • Mission Statement is:   To protect human health and the environment through responsible regulation supported by sound science, quality service, and comprehensive environmental education.

    View cached Adobe PDF of the web site at the time of publication: Ohio Environmental Protection Agency

  • The functions and responsibilities of the Ohio EPA district offices are:
  • To investigate complaints.
  • To inspect air, hazardous waste, solid waste, drinking water and water pollution control facilities.
  • Identify environmental violations and prepare recommendations for enforcement.
  • Oversee the cleanup of abandoned hazardous waste sites.
  • To assess air and water quality conditions.
  • Contact with the public is one of the main responsibilities of the district offices.
  • Ohio EPA's Public Interest Center (PIC), Public Involvement Section sets up, moderates and prepares technical staff for public information sessions; coordinates public hearings; conducts community relations at DERR (Emergency and Remedial Response) sites; responds to inquiries from the general public; and solicits public input on various program issues.
  • Procedures for Public Records Requests and File Reviews at Ohio EPA:
    View cached Adobe PDF of the web site at the time of publication: Procedures for Public Records Requests

  • Both US EPA and Ohio EPA promote public
    participation and education via excellent printed material and a series of informative Internet sites. The locations for contact are listed in the Citizens' Guide.
  • Ohio is served by five Ohio EPA district offices:
    • Central District Office in Columbus
    • District Office in Bowling Green
    • Northeast District Office in Twinsburg
    • Southwest District Office in Dayton
    • Southeast District Office in Logan
    • While the divisions' responsibilities include diverse technical and engineering services, only those most likely to assist the public are included here .
    • 1. Division of Air Pollution Control (DAPC)
      • The DAPC, along with nine delegated local air agencies, is charged with attaining and maintaining ambient air quality throughout the state at a level which protects Ohio citizens' health and welfare. To that end, the DAPC agencies' responsibilities include:
      • Ensuring that federal clean air standards are met throughout Ohio.
      • Investigating air pollution complaints.
      • Monitoring air quality by sampling.
      • Inspecting and monitoring stationary air permit holders.
    • 2. Division of Surface Water
      • The division works to meet the objectives of the Federal Clean Water Act by making all of Ohio's waterways fishable and swimmable. Therefore, it focuses on sources of pollution that ultimately enter Ohio's waterways.
      • Runoff waters from the broad landscape
      • Agriculture
      • Treated Wastewater
      • Storm Water
    • 3. Division of Drinking and Ground Waters
      • Implements the Federal Safe Drinking Water Act and its amendments, assuring Ohio citizens an adequate supply of safe drinking water.
      • Drinking Water Section focus includes:
      • Regulating public water systems
      • Investigating citizen complaints
      • Ground Water Section focus includes:
      • Water sampling and monitoring
      • Investigates complaints about ground water contamination
    • 4. Division of Solid and Infectious Waste Management
      • Administers Ohio's programs for the disposal of solid and infectious wastes.
      • Inspects existing and closed solid waste landfills
      • Inspects solid waste incinerators, transfer facilities, composting facilities, waste tire facilities, construction/demolition disposal sites
      • Inspects infectious waste treatment facilities, generators and transporters
      • Investigates complaints of illegal dumping
    • 5. Division of Hazardous Waste Management
      • Monitors hazardous waste in all situations from its creation to its final disposal: production, transportation, treatment, storage, and disposal.
      • Inspections of hazardous waste generators, transporters, facilities
      • Investigates complaints of improperly managed waste sites
    • 6. Division of Emergency and Remedial Response
      • Remedial Response Program
        • Oversees the investigation and cleanup work at sites contaminated with hazardous wastes that pose a potential threat to human health or the environment.
        • Works with the U.S. EPA to oversee the investigation cleanup of Ohio's federal Superfund sites.
        • Conducts investigations of alleged criminal violations of state environmental laws and regulations.
      • Emergency Response and Special Investigation Section
        • Oversees cleanups of spills or releases to the environment at and facilities, transportation accidents, etc.
    2000 Green Environmental Coalition. All rights reserved worldwide.
    Cached documents copyright by their respective authors.

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