List of Environmental Legislation and Agencies
A list of legislation and agencies involved.
Before the publication of Silent Spring in 1962, there was just one major piece of legislation:
- 1958 - Delaney Clause prohibits any carcinogenic additive from being added to processed foods.
Since the publication of Silent Spring, there has been a major shift in public consciousness about the environment. Years later, legislators have responded with the following:
- 1969 - National Environmental Policy Act requires environmental impact statements for actions by federal agencies that effect the environment. Congress then created the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to enforce compliance with this law.
- 1970 - Occupational Safety and Health Act established the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) within the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to develop mandatory health and safety standards for business, conduct research on occupational health problems and produce criteria identifying toxic substances and safe exposure levels for them.
- 1970 - Clean Air Act, amended in 1977 and 1990 with National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPS), regulates off-site contamination, that is, pollution outside one's facility.
- 1972 - Clean Water Act, amended in 1972, 1977, 1986, and 1995, applies to off-site contamination.
- 1976 - Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) provides regulation for the on-site handling of toxic chemicals, that is, handling of toxic chemicals at one's facility.
- 1976 - Toxic Substances Control Act (TOSCA) provides regulation to protect the public against toxic substances in consumer and industrial products.
- 1980 - Comprehensive Emergency Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) , popularly known as "the Superfund Act," established the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) within the Public Health Service (PHS), one of the agencies of the DHHS.
- 1986 - Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA) added to the duties of the ATSDR the responsibility for developing and updating a list of toxic substances that pose the most significant threat to human health.
You can find a full list at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencies list of Laws and Executive Orders