Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
Logo of the DEP
|Formed||July 1, 1995|
|Jurisdiction||State government of Pennsylvania|
Rachel Carson State Office Building, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania|
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is the agency in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania responsible for protecting and preserving the land, air, water, and public health through enforcement of the state's environmental laws. It was created by Act 18 of 1995, which split the Department of Environmental Resources into the Department of Environmental Protection and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. Its current secretary is Patrick McDonnell.
The Department of Environmental Resources was created by Act 275 of 1970, which abolished the Department of Forest and Waters. The Department of Forest and Waters was created by the General Assembly in 1901.
The Department of Environmental Protection is charged with the responsibility for development of a balanced ecological system incorporating social, cultural, and economic needs of the commonwealth through development and protection. The department is responsible for the state’s land, air, and water management programs, all aspects of environmental protection, and the regulation of mining operations.
- 1 Structure
- 1.1 Office of the Secretary
- 1.2 Executive Deputy Secretary for Administration and Management
- 1.3 Executive Deputy Secretary for Programs
- 1.4 Field Operations
- 1.5 Oil and Gas Management
- 1.6 Water Management
- 1.7 Active and Abandoned Mine Operations
- 1.8 Waste, Air, Radiation, and Remediation
- 1.9 Chief Counsel
- 2 Secretaries
- 3 See also
- 4 References
- 5 Bibliography
- 6 External links
Office of the Secretary
The secretary of Environmental Protection, appointed by the governor and confirmed by the state Senate, heads the department. The secretary is ultimately responsible for all policy and resource allocation decisions. The secretary represents DEP before the legislative branch, those affected by DEP action, and the general public. The secretary also manages the Policy Office, Office of Pollution Prevention and Energy Assistance, the Citizens Advisory Council, Office of Communications, the Environmental Education & Information Center, the Legislative Office, the director of External Affairs, and the Office of Environmental Justice.
Executive Deputy Secretary for Administration and Management
The executive deputy secretary for Administration and Management provides all Department support services. This executive deputy secretary oversees the bureaus of Office Services, Human Resources, Information Technology, and Laboratories, and the DEP Grants Center and Small Businesses Ombudsman’s Office.
Executive Deputy Secretary for Programs
The executive deputy secretary for Programs is responsible for coordinating department-wide programmatic priorities, policies, and actions within the Office of Waste, Air, Radiation, and Remediation; the Office of Water Management; the Office of Active and Abandoned Mine Operations; the Office of Field Operations; and the Office of Oil and Gas Management. It also oversees the Office of Program Integration and the Environmental Emergency Response Program.
The six regional offices located in Norristown, Harrisburg, Williamsport, Wilkes-Barre, Pittsburgh, and Meadville provide permitting, inspection, enforcement, and other field services for environmental protection programs. The regional offices are responsible for implementing Department programs through permitting, inspection, enforcement, and other field services for environmental and public health protection; program and technical support to Pennsylvania’s 66 conservation districts; and compliance assistance to the regulated community.
Oil and Gas Management
The deputy secretary for Oil and Gas Management directs, coordinates, and oversees the permitting and regulation of the oil and gas industry within the Commonwealth, and is responsible for the development and administration of the regulation of statewide oil and gas conservation and environmental management programs to facilitate the safe exploration, development, and recovery of Pennsylvania’s oil and gas reserves in a manner that will protect the commonwealth’s natural resources and the environment. This office regulates oil and gas development and production; plugs abandoned and orphaned wells causing health, safety, and environmental problems; oversees the oil and gas permitting and inspection programs; develops statewide regulations and standards; and conducts training programs for industry. The Bureau of Oil and Gas Planning and Program Management is housed here.
The deputy secretary for Water Management plans, directs, and coordinates departmental programs associated with the management and protection of the commonwealth’s water resources; coordinates policies, procedures, and regulations that influence public water supply withdrawals and quality, sewage facilities planning, point source municipal and industrial discharges, encroachments upon waterways and wetlands, dam safety, earth disturbance activities, and control of stormwater and non-point source pollution; and coordinates the planning, design, and construction of flood protection and stream improvement projects. The bureaus of Conservation and Restoration, Waterways Engineering and Wetlands, Point and Non-Point Source Regulation, and Safe Drinking Water and the Office of Interstate Waters are housed here.
Active and Abandoned Mine Operations
The deputy secretary for Active and Abandoned Mine Operations is responsible for developing and implementing Pennsylvania’s policies and programs for surface and underground coal and industrial mineral mining, mine safety, and the reclamation of abandoned mines. This deputy secretary oversees the bureaus of Mining Programs, District Mining Operations, Mine Safety, and Abandoned Mine Reclamation.
Waste, Air, Radiation, and Remediation
The deputy secretary for Waste, Air, Radiation, and Remediation plans, directs and coordinates the department’s programs related to air quality, waste management, radiation protection, and environmental cleanup. The bureaus of Waste Management, Radiation Protection, Air Quality, and Environmental Cleanup & Brownfields are housed here.
The chief counsel provides legal representation for all of the department’s programs. The chief counsel oversees the bureaus of Regulatory Counsel, Regional Counsel, General Law, and Investigation.
|Name||Dates served||Appointed by|
|James Seif *||1995–2001||Tom Ridge|
|Kathleen McGinty||2003–2008||Edward Rendell|
|Michael Krancer||2011–2013||Tom Corbett|
|E. Christopher Abruzzo||2013 – October 2, 2014|
|Dana Ankust (acting)||October 2, 2014 – 2015|
|John Quigley||2015–2016||Tom Wolf|
|Patrick McDonnell ||2016–present|
- James Seif was also the last Secretary of the Department of Environmental Resources before it was split.
- "Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania". Pennsylvania General Assembly. Pennsylvania General Assembly. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-57. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- "Office of the Secretary". About DEP. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-59. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-60. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-61. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-62. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- "Pennsylvania DEP secretary, lawyer resign amid email scandal". post-gazette.com. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
- Thompson, Charles (20 May 2016). "Pa. DEP Secretary Quigley resigns state post in wake of email flap". The Patriot-News. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
- The Pennsylvania Manual (PDF) (Volume 121 ed.). Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2013. p. 4-63. ISBN 0-8182-0357-9. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
- "Cabinet-level agencies". The Pennsylvania Manual. 118. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Department of General Services. 2007. Archived from the original on 2011-10-01.