The EPA adhered to most climate change requirements for federal agencies and in some cases exceeded its goals and requirements related to water use, greenhouse gas emissions and renewable energy, according to the Office of the Inspector General.
The EPA was one of only three agencies out of 25 reporting that received a green scorecard on the Office of Management and Budget sustainability scorecard for fiscal year 2013. The EPA has achieved a green scorecard for the last three years.
In addition, the EPA voluntarily tracks and reports data for its leased buildings that are 50,000 square feet or larger.
After following a recommendation from the 2011 OIG report, the agency is also on track to meet its 2020 greenhouse gas reduction goals.
However, the OIG did identify some concerns with the EPA’s data quality assurance procedures and adherence to its Records Management Policy.
Since the agency relies heavily on an outside contractor to collect water and energy data and also relies on that contractor to perform its own quality assurance review of the data, there were concerns that inaccurate data could be used in the Strategic Sustainability Plan.
The OIG also identified insufficient internal controls for electronic stewardship and data center accomplishments in the Strategic Sustainability Plan. In addition, it identified areas where the EPA was not in full compliance with the agency’s Records Management Policy.
The EPA agreed with the OIG’s findings and provided an acceptable corrective action plan in response.
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