The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) first launched its Enforcement and Compliance History Online (ECHO) website in 2002. The EPA ECHO website and dashboard were created to provide a place for members of the public to search for facilities in their community and review the facility’s compliance with environmental regulations. Since its development in 2002, the EPA has continued to update and add new features to ECHO.

In October 2022, the EPA added environmental justice metrics to ECHO which allow users to:

  • Search for facilities in areas with possible environmental justice concerns,
  • Investigate pollution sources in areas with possible environmental justice concerns,
  • Examine and create environmental justice enforcement-related maps, and
  • Analyze trends in compliance and enforcement of environmental justice data.

In addition to the new environmental justice features, the ECHO website includes information for over one million EPA-regulated facilities nationwide. These facilities include:

  • Clean Air Act (CAA) stationary sources,
  • Clean Water Act (CWA) facilities with direct discharge permits, under the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System,
  • Generators and handlers of hazardous waste, regulated under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), and
  • Public drinking water systems, regulated under the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA).

There are many tools on the ECHO website. Users can complete a wide range of tasks from basic single-facility searches to broad multi-facility searches and data analysis. There are four main search features in ECHO. The first is Quick Search which allows the user to search for compliance information on a single facility by location or facility name. The second is a Multimedia Compliance Data Search which can be used to complete a detailed compliance analysis for a facility across all four types of media: air, drinking water, wastewater/ stormwater/ biosolids, and hazardous waste. The third is a Single-Program Compliance Data Search which allows the user to complete a detailed compliance analysis for a facility across one of the four media types. The fourth search feature is the EPA Enforcement Cases Search which allows the user to find EPA cases through a quick search or criteria-based search of EPA enforcement case information from the Integrated Compliance Information System (ICIS).

The EPA gathers information from many EPA and non-EPA databases to power ECHO. The data in ECHO is not real-time but the EPA completes regular data refreshes and maintains a log of ECHO Data Sources and Refresh Dates.  

For those that are new to ECHO, the EPA has published an ECHO Quick Start Guide and an ECHO Tool Guide to help users learn to navigate and fully utilize the online tool.

CTEH recognizes that EJ is a rapidly changing landscape that affects a vast array of topics. We have a team of dedicated experts that keep abreast of these changes to regulatory and litigation spaces. Connect with our team to learn the strengths and limitations of these tools and how we can help apply them to your needs!