NEWS NOTES ON SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCESGAO Report on EPAhttps://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-20-287PR?utm_campaign=usgao_email&utm_content=topic_n...

NEWS NOTES ON SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCESGAO Report on EPAhttps://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-20-287PR?utm_campaign=usgao_email&utm_content=topic_n...NEWS NOTES ON SUSTAINABLE WATER RESOURCES

GAO Report on EPA

https://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-20-287PR?utm_campaign=usgao_email&utm_content=topic_naturalresources&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery#summary

The 21 priority GAO recommendations fall into the following five areas:

“Assessing and Controlling Toxic Chemicals

Toxic Substances: EPA Has Increased Efforts to Assess and Control Chemicals but Could Strengthen Its Approach. GAO-13-249. Washington, D.C.: March 22, 2013.

Recommendation: To better position EPA to collect chemical toxicity and exposure-related data and ensure chemical safety under existing Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) authority, while balancing its workload, and to better position EPA to ensure chemical safety under existing TSCA authority, the Administrator of EPA should direct the appropriate offices to develop strategies for addressing challenges that impede the agency’s ability to meet its goal of ensuring chemical safety.”


“Reducing Pollution in the Nation’s Waters

Nonpoint Source Water Pollution: Greater Oversight and Additional Data Needed for Key EPA Water Program. GAO-12-335. Washington, D.C.: May 31, 2012.

Recommendation: To help protect the quality of our nation’s water resources, and to strengthen EPA’s implementation of its responsibilities under the Clean Water Act’s section 319 nonpoint source pollution control program, the Administrator of EPA should, in revising section 319 guidelines to states, and in addition to existing statutorily required reporting measures, emphasize measures that (1) more accurately reflect the overall health of targeted water bodies (e.g., the number, kind, and condition of living organisms) and (2) demonstrate states’ focus on protecting high-quality water bodies, where appropriate.”


“Ensuring Cybersecurity at EPA

Cybersecurity: Agencies Need to Fully Establish Risk Management Programs and
Address Challenges. GAO-19-384. Washington, D.C.: July 25, 2019.

Recommendations:
(1) The Administrator of EPA should fully develop a cybersecurity risk management strategy that includes the key elements identified in this report.

(2) The Administrator of EPA should establish a process for conducting an organization-wide cybersecurity risk assessment.”



“Addressing Data, Funding, and Cybersecurity Issues for Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure

Drinking Water: Unreliable State Data Limit EPA’s Ability to Target Enforcement Priorities and Communicate Water Systems’ Performance. GAO-11-381. Washington,
D.C.: June 17, 2011.

Recommendation: To improve EPA’s ability to oversee the states’ implementation of the Safe Drinking Water Act and provide Congress and the public with more complete and accurate information on compliance, the Administrator of EPA should resume data verification audits to routinely evaluate the quality of selected drinking water data on health-based and monitoring violations that the states provide to EPA. These audits should also evaluate the quality of data on the enforcement actions that states and other primacy agencies have taken to correct violations.”



“Managing Climate Change Risks

Superfund: EPA Should Take Additional Actions to Manage Risks from Climate Change. GAO-20-73. Washington, D.C.: October 18, 2019.

Recommendations:

(1) The Administrator of EPA should clarify how EPA’s actions to manage risks to human health and the environment from the potential impacts of climate change effects at nonfederal NPL sites align with the agency’s current goals and objectives.
(2) The Director of the Office of Superfund Remediation and Technology Innovation should provide direction on how to integrate information on the potential impacts of climate change effects into risk assessments at nonfederal NPL sites.
(3) The Director of the Office of Superfund Remediation and Technology Innovation should provide direction on how to integrate information on the potential impacts of climate change effects into risk response decisions at nonfederal NPL sites.”