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About Guam EPA

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Agency History

Guam EPA is created
Acting Governor Kurt S. Moylan signs bill No. 473 -- introduced by Sen. F. Santos -- into Public law 11-191 on Dec. 7, 1972. The law established the Guam Environmental Protecion Agency, which came into being on March 7, 1973.
As far back as mid-1969, the combination of the Water Pollution Control Commission and the proposed Air Pollution Control Commission was envisioned. The Director of Public Health and Social Services suggested this idea to the Governor and was given the go-ahead for development of a plan of action. A "Proposal to Create a Guam Environmental Protection Commission" was drafted and circulated in June 1970, and the final draft was completed three months later.

In November 1970, a draft bill was reviewed by the Governor's staff and transmitted to the Legislature. Although the hearing on Bill 473 was in May 1971, passage did not come about until November 1972. The bill became Public Law 11-191 when Acting Governor Kurt S. Moylan signed it on December 7, 1972. On March 3, 1973, the Guam Environmental Protection Agency was born.

Harmon Office
Guam EPA's first office in the Harmon Plaza.
San Vitores Cleanup
Guam EPA staff and volunteers participating in a beach clean-up at San Vitores in 1973.
Guam EPA's offices were located in the Harmon Plaza until May 1995, when the Agency moved to the Calibration Laboratory Building (now the Guam EPA Operations Building) and N Street offices in Tiyan. In October 2000, the Agency's administrative departments moved to the former PACDIV CSO building in Tiyan. Directions to Guam EPA's offices.

Over the years, Guam EPA's initial mandate of "establishing and maintaining a high quality of the air, land and water of Guam" (P.L. 11-191) has remained constant, but the environmental challenges facing the Agency have grown. Guam EPA's initial staff numbered around 40, and today staffing levels are not much higher. Even though the Agency has faced budgetary constraints and staffing shortages in recent years, it remains committed to protecting Guam's environment for current and future generations.

Agency Mission

The Guam Environmental Protection Agency's Statement of Policy and Purpose states:

"It is hereby declared to be the public policy of this Island of Guam that a high quality environment be maintained at all times to guarantee an enjoyable life for all people at present and in the future, and that environmental degradation of the quality of land, water, and air by any pollutants, including all physical, chemical, and biological agents, should not be allowed.

"To these ends, it is the purpose of this Act to provide a united, integrated, and comprehensive island-wide program of environmental protection and to provide a framework to fulfill that task."

- Guam Environmental Protection Agency Act (10 GCA, Chapter 45, §45102)

Fish Kill Sampling
Guam EPA Planner Mike Gawel samples a fish kill at Sleepy Lagoon in 1975 caused by aerial application of the pesticide Malathion.
Recycling Cans
Guam EPA's first Administrator, Dr. O.V. Natarajan (third from right) and others turn in aluminum cans collected during Labor Day for recycling at Island Equipment Co., 1975.
Combatting Guam's air pollution problems has been part of Guam EPA's mandate since its creation.

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URL: https://guamepa.govguam.net/about/index.html
Last update: 8 November 2002

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