The Obama Administration proposed a Fiscal Year 2014 (FY 2014) budget of $8.153 billion for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). This request is $296 million below the EPA’s budget for Fiscal Year 2012.
“EPA’s FY 2014 budget reflects our firm commitment to keeping American communities across our country healthy and clean, while also taking into consideration the difficult fiscal situation and the declining resources of state, local and tribal programs,” said EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe. “Our request takes a balanced approach to funding the agency, including increased investments in more efficient technologies as well as necessary program eliminations or reductions.”
EPA’s FY 2014 request will allow EPA to continue its progress in addressing climate change; protecting the nation’s air, waters and lands; supporting sustainable water infrastructure; and assuring the safety of chemicals. EPA will continue to lay the groundwork to transform the way it does business, ensuring the best use of human and financial resources, while continuing to achieve the agency’s mission effectively and efficiently.
Fiscal Year 2014 budget highlights include:
E-Enterprise – E-Enterprise, a $60 million initiative, seeks to replace paper reporting with integrated e-reporting systems using technology and shared IT services, while encouraging greater transparency and compliance. The new single portal system will allow regulated businesses to register and receive tailored information based on their needs. This electronic system will facilitate commercial entities’ permit applications and emissions reporting as well as provide information on applicable regulations and compliance status.
Supporting state and tribal partners – The FY 2014 budget includes a total of $1,135.8 million in categorical grants, an increase of $47 million over FY 2012 levels. Funding to states and tribes in the State and Tribal Assistance Grants (STAG) account continues to be the largest percentage of the EPA's budget request, at nearly 40% in FY 2014.
Climate change – EPA is proposing $176.5 million for the agency’s work with partners and stakeholders to provide information and tools to cut greenhouse gas emissions. These funds will support reducing emissions in the U.S. and abroad through rulemaking and voluntary programs that focus on the largest entities while also encouraging businesses and consumers to limit unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions.
Enforcement and compliance – EPA’s budget proposal requests $625 million to maintain the strength of core national enforcement and compliance assurance programs and for the Next Generation Compliance Initiative. Through the Next Generation Compliance initiative, the EPA is developing and implementing new methods based on advances in both monitoring and information technology that will improve efficiency, leading to better compliance and enabling its ability to focus on the most serious violations. Next Generation Compliance complements the agency’s E-Enterprise initiative.
Improving air quality – The agency’s proposal requests $175 million to support its work to meet its court-ordered deadlines to develop, implement and review statutorily mandated ambient air quality standards and guidance and air toxics regulations.
Addressing phosphorus and nitrogen Pollution in America’s waters –EPA is requesting an increase of $15 million in Clean Water Act Section 106 Water Pollution Control grant funding to support states, interstate agencies and tribes that commit to strengthening their nutrient management efforts. Additionally, EPA will work to achieve water quality improvements in key watersheds across the country in partnership with states and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Promoting sustainable community water resources – The FY 2014 budget requests $1.1 billion for the Clean Water SRF and $817 million for the Drinking Water SRF. EPA is working to increase the use of upfront planning that considers a full range of alternatives, including “green” infrastructure, to ensure timely, relevant and cost-effective investments.
Protecting the land – EPA is requesting more than $1.34 billion to continue to apply effective approaches to preserve and restore land by developing and implementing prevention programs, improving response capabilities and maximizing the effectiveness of response and cleanup actions under RCRA, Superfund, Leaking Underground Storage Tank and other authorities.
Ensuring the safety of chemicals –The $686.2 million requested in FY 2014 will allow the EPA to manage the potential risks of new chemicals entering commerce without impacting progress in assessing and ensuring the safety of existing chemicals.
Research Solutions – EPA’s research budget provides $554 million to support critical research in key areas such as chemical safety; sustainable water resources; healthy communities; air, climate and energy, homeland security; and human health risk assessment.
Reducing EPA’s physical footprint and energy costs –The FY 2014 request includes $17 million to accelerate a space consolidation effort, with $12 million to the support design and engineering of a consolidated federally-owned EPA multi-use facility in Las Vegas. The new facility will consolidate offices currently in leased locations, create a smaller energy-efficient office and lab footprint and lower operating costs.
Reducing and eliminating programs – The budget includes $54 million in savings by eliminating several EPA programs that have either completed their goals or can be implemented through other federal or state efforts. This request also identifies 20 programs that are being reduced by 10% or more in FY 2014.