About EPA

EPA Designated International Data Center

[EPA press release - March 27, 1975]

The Environmental Protection Agency has been designated as the United States' information center in a global system established by the United Nations for speedy distribution of environmental data.

Selection of the EPA was made at the suggestions of Dr. Dixy Lee Ray, Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International, Environmental and Scientific Affairs.

In acknowledging the designation EPA Administrator Russell E. Train said: "I welcome the opportunity for EPA to play a leadership role in the development of an international information system which will serve the needs of this country as well as provide assistance to other nations within the U.N."

Operating through the UN's International Referral Service for Sources of Environmental Information, EPA will be a focal point for inquiries about environmental matters from this country and from abroad. The Service, which was conceived at the 1972 Stockholm Conference on the Environment, has a central office at the headquarters of the UN Environmental program (UNEP) in Nairobi. This world-wide network operates through national clearinghouses in each participating country which coordinate efforts for identifying sources of environmental information. They will contribute these sources to a computerized international directory UNEP is compiling. Pertinent sources from this data bank will be supplied upon request to researchers, scholars, managers, technicians and others who need them.

A committee established by the Department of State provides policy guidance for the service. In addition to the State Department and EPA, other Federal agencies represented on the committee are the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Health, Education and Welfare, Housing and Urban Development, and Interior; the National Science Foundation, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Council on Environmental Quality, and the Library of Congress.