Jump to main content or area navigation.

Contact Us

EPA for State and Local Governments

General Resources for State and Local Governments

This page is designed to help environmental professionals who work for state and local agencies find information on EPA's Web site.

Air and Radiation

  • Air quality: Through AIRNow, EPA, other federal agencies, news media, tribal, state, and local agencies work together to report conditions for ozone and particle pollution.

  • Indoor air: The IAQ Tools for Schools Program is a comprehensive resource to help schools maintain a healthy environment in school buildings by identifying, correcting, and preventing IAQ problems.

  • Market-based regulatory programs ("cap and trade"): Provides tools for states and regions to obtain information on EPA's acid rain, NOx, and other cap and trade programs, and to learn more about the requirements the regulated community must meet.

  • Radiation:
    • Protective Action Guides help state and local authorities make radiation protection decisions during emergencies.
    • Rad Net - Tracking Environmental Radiation Nationwide: RadNet is a national network of monitoring stations that regularly collect air, precipitation, drinking water, and milk samples for analysis of radioactivity. The RadNet network, which has stations in each state, has been used to track environmental releases of radioactivity from nuclear weapons tests and nuclear accidents.

  • Radon: Under the State Indoor Radon Grant Program, states and tribes receive grant funds from EPA that help finance radon risk reduction programs

Top of page

Climate Change

  • Climate Leaders: Climate Leaders is an EPA industry-government partnership that works with companies to develop comprehensive climate change strategies. Partner companies commit to reducing their impact on the global environment by completing a corporate-wide inventory of their greenhouse gas emissions based on a quality management system, setting aggressive reduction goals, and annually reporting their progress to EPA.

  • Climate Ready Estuaries: The Climate Ready Estuaries website offers information on climate change impacts to different estuary regions, access to tools and resources to monitor changes, and information to help managers develop adaptation plans for estuaries and coastal communities.

  • Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Tools and Resources for States and Local Governments: A variety of tools, guidance and information resources are available to help state and local governments inventory their greenhouse gas emissions, analyze greenhouse gas emissions reduction opportunities and quantify the energy, environmental and economic benefits of lowering greenhouse gases. This compilation includes tools provided by EPA as well as other government agencies and nonprofit organizations.

  • Heat Islands: This Web site provides information on the heat island effect, its impacts, and the strategies that communities can take to reduce urban temperatures. Of the information available to communities, EPA’s Heat Island Reduction Program offers a compendium of mitigation strategies, a community action database, and regularly scheduled webcasts.

  • Methane reduction partnerships: U.S. industries along with state and local governments collaborate with EPA to implement several voluntary programs that promote profitable opportunities for reducing emissions of methane, an important greenhouse gas.
    • AgSTAR: encourages the use of methane recovery (biogas) technologies at the confined animal feeding operations that manage manure as liquids or slurries.
    • Coalbed Methane Outreach Program (CMOP): By working cooperatively with coal companies and related industries, CMOP helps to address barriers to using CMM instead of emitting it to the atmosphere.
    • Natural Gas STAR Program: Encourages oil and natural gas companies-both domestically and abroad-to adopt cost-effective technologies and practices that improve operational efficiency and reduce emissions of methane.
    • Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP): By preventing emissions of methane (a powerful greenhouse gas) through the development of landfill gas energy projects, LMOP helps businesses, states, energy providers, and communities protect the environment.

  • State and Local Climate and Energy Program: This program provides technical assistance, peer exchange opportunities, analytical tools, and outreach support to state, local, and tribal governments. Using these resources, state and local governments can develop policies and programs that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, lower energy costs, improve air quality and public health, and help achieve economic development goals.
    • State Climate and Energy Program: Provides states with and advises them on proven, cost–effective best practices, peer exchange opportunities, and analytical tools. Resources include: best practice guidance, state policy maps, monthly policy webcasts, tools, and a listserv.
    • Local Climate and Energy Program: Helps local governments meet multiple sustainability goals with cost-effective climate change mitigation and clean energy strategies. Resources include: best practice guidance, regular webcasts, searchable resource database, a listserv, and competitive grant funding opportunities.

Top of page

Complying With and Enforcing Environmental Laws

  • EPA and state governments working together on compliance and enforcement. EPA works closely with the states to implement federal environmental programs. States authorized to manage federal programs must have enforcement authorities that are at least as stringent as federal law. EPA works with officials in state environmental, health and agricultural agencies on strategic planning, priority-setting and measurement of results.

  • Local government organizations must comply with federal drinking water, storm water, waste water and solid waste regulations. Learn more about how to comply.

Top of page

Emergency Management

  • Local Governments Reimbursement Program. In the event of a release (or threatened release) of hazardous substances, EPA may reimburse local governments for expenses related to the release and associated emergency response measures. The Local Governments Reimbursement (LGR) Program provides a "safety net" of up to $25,000 per incident to local governments that do not have funds available to pay for response actions. Learn whether you are eligible, what the requirements for reimbursement are, and how to apply for reimbursement.

  • State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) Contacts | What are SERCs?

Top of page

Energy Efficiency and Resource Conservation

Top of page

Financing Environmental Systems; Grants

  • The Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program offers grants to fund innovative ways for local governments to create collaborative partnerships to reduce toxic pollution in their local environment, and to minimize people's exposure to toxic pollutants.

  • The Environmental Financial Advisory Board (EFAB) is an independent board that provides advice and recommendations to EPA's Administrator on how to leverage public and private resources to pay for the growing costs of environmental protection and increase investment in environmental infrastructure.

  • Environmental Finance Center Network: Environmental goals cannot be met without financing, which is essential to implementing state and local programs. Knowledge about how to fund these programs is often limited, especially at the local level. EPA sponsors Environmental Finance Centers (EFCs) at universities around the nation. They provide state and local officials and small businesses with advisory services; education, publications, and training; technical assistance; and analyses on financing alternatives.


Top of page

Preparing for natural disasters

  • Natural Disasters and Weather Emergencies: Links and suggestions for planning ahead to help reduce cleanup costs and risks of contamination (from chemicals, raw sewage, emergency response materials) caused by large-scale or violent events such as floods, hurricanes, or other natural events.
    • Hurricane activities for water and wastewater facilities: Information that can help plants plan for and recover from emergencies and storms (applies to more than just hurricanes).
    • Mold: Investigating and cleanup of mold after a flood, for commercial buildings and schools, and health information.
    • Droughts and water conservation: Ideas and links for schools, communities, and utilities can use water more efficiently and reduce load on local water supplies.
    • De-icing and winter storms: Information about proper storage, use, and reducing environmental impacts for municipalities and airports.
    • Disaster Debris: Plan ahead for potential large volumes and high costs of debris and waste after a storm. Typical methods of recycling or solid waste disposal in sanitary landfills often cannot be applied to disaster debris because of the large volume of waste, and burning prohibitions.
    • Community-Based Water Resiliency: Communities can plan ahead to reduce risks to water infrastructure from natural disasters or security threats. The CBWR Electronic Tool can be downloaded for free and gives community groups a wide variety of tools to help with planning and assessing local water resiliency efforts.
  • Public Service Announcements: Short messages and transcripts free to download and play on radio stations or Web sites.
  • en español: Desastres naturales y emergencias climáticos

Top of page

Performance and Accountability

  • National Program Managers (NPM) guidance documents are issued from EPA's five major national programs (Air and Radiation; Water; Solid Waste and Emergency Response; Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances; and Enforcement and Compliance Assurance) and provide EPA Regional offices, states and tribes with guidance on specific priorities and implementation strategies for the coming year.

  • Performance and Accountability at EPA: Learn about EPA's short-term and long-term planning and performance in environmental programs.

Top of page


Top of page

Reducing Pollution and Toxics

  • Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) offers an innovative way for communities to organize and take action to reduce toxic pollution in their local environment and create a partnership that implements solutions to reduce releases of toxic pollutants and minimize people's exposure to them.

  • Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule: This March 2008 rule aimed at protecting children from lead-based paint hazards requires contractors and construction professionals that work in pre-1978 housing or child-occupied facilities to follow lead-safe work practice standards. States, tribes, and territories may begin to apply for authorization to implement the program anytime after June 2008.

  • Pollution prevention and toxics community assistance: Community and business managers, teachers, and parents can take action to reduce pollution and toxics in their communities. This Web site provides information and tools to help you understand and assess environmental data and protect your community's environment.

  • Pollution prevention and toxics grants and funding: Find information on sources of funding for pollution prevention and other projects.

  • Pollution prevention (P2) grants: This Web site provides information on matching funds to state and tribal programs to support P2 activities across all environmental media and to develop state P2 programs.

Top of page

Regulations and Reporting

  • State-Specific Regulatory Information This section of the Laws, Regulations, Guidance, and Dockets site allows you to access plans, programs, and designations developed by your state, district, commonwealth, or territory as required by federal regulations (e.g., your state's implementation plan under the Clean Air Act). It also provides links to state-level laws, regulations, and administrative agencies.

  • The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), as amended by Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA), provides small entities with an expanded opportunity to participate in the development of certain regulations. The RFA/SBREFA defines "small governmental jurisdiction" as the government of a city, county, town, school district or special district with a population of less than 50,000. EPA has an ongoing commitment to minimize the burden of our regulations on small entities to the extent we can while still meeting our statutory requirements.

Top of page


Top of page

Waste and Cleanup

Top of page


  • Assessments of water quality:
    • The National Assessment Database provides a summary of state-reported water quality information and allows the visitor to view assessments of individual water bodies. The database acts as a quick reference for water quality professionals and those familiar with water quality reporting.
    • Aquatic life benchmarks are estimates of the concentrations below which pesticides are not expected to have the potential for adverse effects on aquatic life. States can use these benchmarks to help them target water monitoring studies and to increase the efficiency of regulatory processes for protecting aquatic environments.

  • Climate Ready Estuaries: The Climate Ready Estuaries Web site offers information on climate change impacts to different estuary regions, access to tools and resources to monitor changes, and information to help managers develop adaptation plans for estuaries and coastal communities.

  • Polluted runoff (nonpoint source pollution, or NPS):
    • The NPS Outreach Toolbox is intended for use by state and local agencies and other organizations interested in educating the public on nonpoint source pollution or storm water runoff. The Toolbox contains a variety of resources to help develop an effective and targeted outreach campaign.
    • Learn about the State/EPA Nonpoint Source Partnership and the eight work groups within the Partnership that focus on nonpoint source topic-specific needs, including:
      • watershed planning and implementation;
      • rural and urban sources;
      • grants management;
      • capacity building and funding;
      • information transfer and outreach; and
      • monitoring.

  • Water efficiency: EPA's WaterSense partnership makes it easy for Americans to save water and protect the environment. Consumers can look for the WaterSense label to choose quality, water-efficient products. WaterSense also provides resources for promotional partners, like utilities, state and local governments, who want to establish water efficiency measures. Through water conservation, state and local governments can reduce water and wastewater infrastructure costs while protecting vital resources for future generation.

  • Watersheds:
  • Wetlands: State and local wetlands initiatives; financial assistance; and watershed planning

Top of page

Jump to main content.