Mission of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
The mission of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is to protect human health and the environment.
- 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.
EPA and Oil Spills
EPA seeks to prevent, prepare for, and respond to oil spills that occur in and around inland waters of the United States. EPA is the lead federal response agency for oil spills occurring in inland waters, and the U.S. Coast Guard is the lead response agency for spills in coastal waters and deep water ports. To learn more about our oil pollution activities, please visit the following links:
- Facility Response Plan (FRP) Rule – Certain facilities that store and use oil must submit plans to respond to a worst-case discharge of oil and to a substantial threat of such a discharge. Information about preparing and submitting an FRP can be found on this page.
- National Contingency Plan (NCP) Subpart J – Product Schedule – Provides for a schedule of spill mitigating devices and substances that may be authorized for use on oil discharges. Information on this page includes the Product Schedule, information on how to list a product, and the complete NCP Subpart J rule.
- Reporting Requirements – Oil Spills and Hazardous Substance Releases – Regulated facilities must report discharges of oil or releases of hazardous substances to EPA and/or other federal, state, and local government agencies. Information about reporting requirements, exemptions from these requirements, and where to call in the event of an oil spill can be found on this page.
- Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) Rule – Certain facilities must prepare, amend, and implement SPCC Plans to address the potential for a discharge of oil. Information on this page includes links to select portions of the SPCC rule, recent amendments to the rule, and SPCC Guidance for Regional Inspectors.
To learn more about oil and responses to oil spills, please visit the following links:
- About Chemicals, Hazardous Substances, and Oil – EPA’s emergency management activities help protect the environment and human health from discharges of oil, chemicals, or other hazardous substances.
- Response and Clean-up Technologies – Learn some of the ways that EPA and other responders clean up oil spills. Under the National Contingency Plan, EPA is the lead federal response agency for oil spills occurring in inland waters, and the U.S. Coast Guard is the lead response agency for spills in coastal waters and deepwater ports.
- Freshwater Spills Symposia – Proceedings from a biennial symposium on current issues and research in freshwater oil spill prevention and response.