Course Description

Are claims that the US has the best air and water quality in the world correct? Do the recent rollbacks of air pollution and wetlands rules really produce net economic benefits? What does the US experience in addressing major air and water pollution of the 1960s and ’70s suggest about our ability to address climate change? We outline how industrial and energy transformations of the 19th and 20th centuries produced mounting problems that came to a head in the 1960s, leading to the first Earth Day, the birth of the Environmental Protection Agency, the landmark Clean Air Act in 1970, and new water protection laws. We show the rapid development of expertise at all levels of government, industry, and science. We assess the successes and failures of the last 50 years in air and water pollution, highlighting the importance of scientific research, monitoring, and accountability. Finally, we briefly address the implications of these past efforts on programs needed to address climate change. | Lecture + Q&A.

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in

Section Title
Protecting Our Air and Water: Origins and Lessons for Today from EPA Practitioners
Online - Zoom
9:00AM to 10:15AM
Mar 23, 2021 to Apr 20, 2021
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
Delivery Options
Virtual Classroom  
Course Fees
Section Notes

Class sessions are recorded.

Guest Information:
Bob Wayland - Director, EPA Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds 1991-2003, Deputy Assistant Administrator for Water 1989-91. EPA Alumni Association Board member, will present history, technical issues, progress, and remaining challenges in managing U.S. water quality - lakes, rivers, wetlands and coastal waters.

Recommended reading:

John Bachmann - Journal Article with additional background, Will the Circle Be Unbroken: A History of the U.S. National Ambient Air Quality Standards, https://tinyurl.com/y27peurf

Multiple former EPA Experts, EPA Alumni Associations Half Century of Progress Reports - Overview, Air and Water, https//www.epaalumni.com/2019hcp

John Bachmann, Mother Earth music video - celebrating 50th anniversary of Earth Day and EPA, https://tinyurl.com/yxttfau7