Laws & Regulations

Policy & Guidance

The EPA has primary responsibility for enforcing many of the environmental statutes and regulations of the United States. As such, the Agency is granted explicit enforcement authority in environmental statutes. Sometimes, however, that authority needs to be further refined or explained. In such cases, EPA may develop and implement policies and write guidance. In addition, EPA sometimes issues policy or guidance to encourage compliance with environmental requirements.

Policy documents represent EPA's official interpretation or view of specific issues. Guidance documents are published to further clarify regulations and to assist in implementation of environmental regulations. 

Significant Guidance Documents:

EPA maintains a list of significant guidance documents as called for by the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) Final Bulletin for Agency Good Guidance Practices (PDF) (23 pp, 158K, About PDF).

Browse the significant guidance document list by environmental topic.

Other Policy & Guidance Websites:

You may find more detailed policy and guidance links under topics or sectors.


Find more on EPA’s Air website.

Compliance and Enforcement

Find more on EPA’s the Compliance & Enforcement websites

Pesticides and Toxic Substances

Find pesticides and chemical substances information from EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention.


Find more on EPA's Municipal Solid Waste & Non-Hazardous Waste websites


Find more on EPA’s Water website.