Questions About the Annual Results Maps
- What information do these maps display?
- What are the limitations of interactive maps?
- What do the maps allow me to do?
- Why do some of the markers on the map have plus signs inside them?
- How can I get additional information on particular enforcement case and facility?
- Are facilities missing from the map? There was environmental enforcement action taken at a company near my home that is not on the map.
- How did EPA determine which environmental enforcement actions were displayed on the Air, Water, Land, and Cross-Media maps?
- Does the number of facilities identified on the maps equal the number of enforcement actions that EPA announced that it concluded in FY 2009, or the number of facilities that were subject to those enforcement actions?
- Do the maps show any environmental indicator data?
- I do not know the location of an environmental enforcement action taken but I know the name of the company or facility impacted, can I find information on this particular action?
- When reviewing a particular environmental enforcement action, why does the information provided in the ECHO Case Report sometimes differ from the EPA Press Release?
The interactive maps provided on EPA’s Annual Results Web site show facilities in the United States where the EPA concluded an environmental enforcement action between October 1, 2008 and September 30, 2009 (FY2009). These maps do not show environmental enforcement actions taken by state or local environmental agencies. There are several interactive maps: one map shows all EPA FY 2009 enforcement actions that are able to be mapped, and separate maps show just those enforcement actions that were taken under air, water, land, cross media and criminal laws.
Interactive mapping tools are a challenge for accessibility due to the inherent visual aspects of mapping. These maps cannot be made fully accessible under Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (as amended in 1998). If a person needs accommodations due to a disability, additional assistance is available in obtaining information on the environmental enforcement actions taken at the facilities shown on these interactive maps. Individuals, who may need information not accessible to them, can contact Allison Donohue for assistance by email (email@example.com).
The maps allow the user to navigate across the United States and to zoom in and out of places of interest. If you have an interest in a specific location, we recommend that you zoom into the location a few times. After you zoom in, the facility location indicator will change from a dot to a flag and you will be able to click on the indicator to obtain additional information on the environmental enforcement case and the facility.
Sometimes the EPA takes an environmental enforcement action that impacts more than one facility. Facilities impacted by a multiple facility environmental enforcement action have a plus sign inside the location indicator marker.
Once a particular enforcement action or facility is identified, zoom into the map until the facility location indicator switchs from a dot to a flag. Once the facility location indicator switches to a flag, click on the flag and a bubble will appear with additional links and information.
- The first item is a link allowing you to access the Enforcement Compliance History Online (ECHO) case report for the particular enforcement case and facility. The ECHO case report includes a case summary, penalty amounts, laws violated, facilities affected, any pollutants reduced, and complying actions required.
- The second item indicates the laws associated with the enforcement action.
- The third item is a link called “More Information” and is available for some facilities that have a press release or a case highlight in the annual results Web site. It will be gray if no additional informaiton is available.
- The fourth item is a link called “FRS ID:” You can obtain additional information on the facility impacted by the enforcement action from the ECHO Detailed Facility Report. The ECHO facility report includes histories of inspections, enforcement actions, and chemical releases, as well as a demographic profile of the surrounding area.
- The fifth item is a link called "Multi-Facility" and will be present only for location indicators with a plus sign inside them. The "Multi-Facility" link allows you to open an additional map and view the location of all the facilities associated with the multi-facility case selected.
6. Are facilities missing from the map? There was environmental enforcement action taken at a company near my home that is not on the map.
There are some facilities that received an EPA enforcement action we were not able to map. This includes all Safe Drinking Water Act Enforcement Actions, which were not mapped due to Homeland Security concerns. The document Facilities That Are Not on the Maps (PDF) (23 pp., 620 K, about PDF) lists the facilities that were not mapped but still were impacted by an EPA environmental enforcement action. The document includes active links to the ECHO case report and facility report, and so you can still see additional information about those cases. If the facility does not appear on this list, the environmental enforcement action may have been taken by the state or local environmental agency.
7. How did EPA determine which environmental enforcement actions were displayed on the Air, Water, Land, and Cross-Media maps?
The enforcement actions displayed on the Air, Water, Land, and Cross-Media maps are determined by the federal environmental law under which each enforcement action occurred. Listed below are the federal environmental laws represented on each map:
- Air Map: Clean Air Act
- Water Map: Clean Water Act, Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act
- Land Map: Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (commonly known as Superfund)
- Cross-Media: Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, Toxic Substances Control Act
Some EPA enforcement actions are brought under more than one law. Where this is the case, EPA identifies a primary environmental law under which the enforcement action was taken (usually the law that was most seriously violated). These cases are displayed on the map based on the primary law. Note: Safe Drinking Water Act enforcement actions were not mapped due to Homeland Security concerns.
8. Does the number of facilities identified on the maps equal the number of enforcement actions that EPA announced that it concluded in FY 2009, or the number of facilities that were subject to those enforcement actions?
No, for several reasons. First, facilities that received more than one enforcement action in FY 2009 are mapped only once. Second, in its official counts, EPA, for various reasons, counts only one facility for certain types of enforcement cases (bankruptcy, debt collection, and Underground Injection Control cases), whereas, on the map, all facilities identified for these cases are mapped.
The Water Map allows you to identify whether water enforcement actions have been taken on Clean Water Act section 303(d) impaired waters. The 303(d) impaired waters are water bodies that the states or EPA determine do not meet water quality standards. When zoomed into a water enforcement action at a close magnitude, nearby water bodies that have a red line going through them have been designated as 303(d) impaired waters.
10. I do not know the location of an environmental enforcement action taken but I know the name of the company or facility impacted, can I find information on this particular action?
You can search for an EPA enforcement action using an enforcement action name or facility name by going to the Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) and searching under the "EPA Enforcement Cases Search" on the left side bar. ECHO is available at http://www.epa-echo.gov/echo.
11. When reviewing a particular environmental enforcement action, why does the information provided in the ECHO Case Report sometimes differ from the EPA Press Release?
The information reported for an environmental enforcement action may vary based on when the information was provided for the press release and when data was refreshed in ECHO. ECHO Case Reports are not updated on a daily basis; and therefore, at a given time, the information may not match exactly.