2006 Annual Priorities Report: Summary of Priorities
Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.
View the Updated Region 10 Environmental Strategy
• Oil and Gas in Alaska and Mining in Region 10 – The Region is rich in natural resources and their development is a high priority for States, Tribes, and the Nation. Alaska boasts vast oil, gas and mineral resources. Mining is an important industry in our other States, primarily Idaho. Environmental degradation, regulatory requirements, transportation issues, and tribal trust responsibilities are only a few of the elements that we must address in fulfilling our mission. The goal of this priority is to maximize protection of public health and the environment 2 while expediting environmental decision-making using a proactive, interdisciplinary, and coordinated approach with our State, Tribal, and Federal partners.
•Diesel Emissions – Diesel engines power much of the economy of the Pacific Northwest, from marine and land-based transportation to agricultural production. However, diesel emissions have been associated with significant adverse health effects, particularly in urban environments. This priority is aimed at accelerating diesel emissions reductions to yield improvements in public health using a voluntary, market-based approach. A wide array of initiatives will be implemented to achieve this goal, including: antiidling programs, clean exhaust technologies, engine replacement, and alternative fuels.
• Coeur d'Alene-Spokane River Basin – The Coeur d’Alene and Spokane River Basins in northern Idaho and eastern Washington are home to diverse ecosystems and natural resource and tourist industries. However, more than 100 years of mining activities discharged nearly 100 million tons of pollutants into the air, water, and land. The resultant contamination over a vast landscape continues to pose threats to human health and the environment. A comprehensive, multidisciplinary, and collaborative approach, employing a carefully crafted blend of voluntary initiatives and regulatory tools, is needed to achieve short- and longrange progress to restoring these Basins to a healthful, productive state.
• The Puget Sound Basin - The fjords, archipelagos and river basins of Puget Sound, Hood Canal and the Northwest Straits, are home to an abundant number of aquatic species, remarkable recreational pursuits, and diverse commercial interests. The level and effect of current development, coupled with robust projected population growth, exert enormous pressures on the natural processes and biological integrity of resources in the Basin, and its economic productivity. The goal of this priority is to renew and enhance the Region’s collaborative efforts with State, Tribal, Local, and Federal agencies on restoring and protecting Puget Sound.
• Grants Management - The American people expect that its government is a responsible steward of the mission, authorities, and enabling resources that have been entrusted to its care. Approximately 65% of Region 10’s annual budget goes to our partners in the form of grants and other financial agreements. This priority is intended to ensure that the Region achieves the highest level of fiduciary integrity and efficiency possible while yielding desired environmental outcomes. This will be accomplished by focusing - internally and externally – on steadily improving the competitiveness of our grant processes, regularly reviewing performance, and continuously promoting accountability.
• Columbia River Basin - The Columbia River Basin provides great environmental, economic, and social benefit to many public and private interests. However, hydro-electric power generation, agriculture, and other human activities have disrupted natural processes and impaired water quality in some areas to the point where human health is at risk and historic salmon stocks are threatened or extinct. This priority provides a sharper focus on reducing toxics contamination in the Columbia River Basin by enhancements in information sharing and leveraging resources in existing programs and initiatives with our many partners.
• Tribal Environmental Health - Members of Pacific Northwest and Alaska Tribes are beset by some of the worst environmental conditions in the Region. Solid waste disposal, sanitation, and polluted drinking and surface water top the list of problems. Complex intergovernmental relations, rural or isolated communities, and limited capacity all hinder an effective response. This priority focuses on bolstering the capabilities and capacities of Tribal governments to address environmental issues by providing active technical, programmatic, and financial assistance. The priority also guides the Region’s direct delivery of environmental programs when a Tribe lacks the capability or authority to do so.