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Message from the Assistant Administrator

EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) promotes compliance with and enforces our nation’s environmental laws. Through vigorous civil and criminal enforcement, the office targets the most serious water, air and chemical hazards and works to advance environmental justice by protecting overburdened communities.

This year’s 2010 annual results benefit communities and serve as a powerful deterrent to those who would violate environmental laws. The enforcement actions and compliance activities over the last fiscal year:

  • Produced commitments to reduce, treat or eliminate harmful air, water and land pollution by more than 1.4 billion pounds, 

  • Ensured that an estimated 11.8 billion pounds of hazardous waste is properly treated, minimized, or disposed of,

  • Produced commitments to reduce, treat or eliminate more than an estimated 1 billion pounds of water pollution and invest an estimated $8 billion in pollution control and environmental improvement projects that will improve water quality. 

  • Required polluters to pay more than $110 million in penalties and to commit to spend an estimated $12 billion on pollution controls and environmental projects to clean up our neighborhoods,

  • Led to the opening of 346 new environmental crimes cases, the charging of 289 defendants for allegedly committing environmental crimes and the conviction of 198 criminals and $41 million assessed in fines and restitution. 

OECA works with EPA regional offices and in partnership with state and tribal governments, and other federal agencies to enforce environmental statutes, including:

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