What Does the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Do?


Quick Answer

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency develops environmental regulations, conducts environmental studies, teaches people about the environment, offers grants, and develops partnerships with other organizations. The primary purpose of the EPA is to protect the environment and human health.

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Full Answer

While the EPA doesn't actually make environmental laws, it does develop the regulations and the ways the law goes into effect once it passes in Congress. The EPA helps enforce the laws once they are in place. In most cases, individual states take on the responsibility of implementing federal environmental law, but the EPA oversees all of the states to ensure they implement the laws correctly.

The EPA has labs across the country used for environmental studies. The research focuses primarily on environmental problems and the potential solutions for them. The organization sometimes works with or shares information with other groups, such as academic institutions. The EPA also works with various levels of government, nonprofits and businesses to improve practices to help protect the environment.

The education component of the organization aims to inform individuals on basic and complex environmental issues. By publishing information and sharing ways to help the environment, the EPA encourages everyone to take responsibility for protecting all aspects of the environment, including air, water and land.

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