Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessments, Environmental Protection Agency, California

Data Center Description
The overall mission of the California Office of Environmental
Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) is to protect and enhance
public health and the environment by scientific evaluation of
risks posed by hazardous substances.

Examples of current OEHHA functions and responsibilities include:

Developing health-protective exposure standards for different
media (air, water, land) to recommend to regulatory agencies,
including ambient air quality standards for the Air Resources
Board and drinking water chemical contaminant standards for the
Department of Health Services.

Carrying out special investigations of potential environmental
causes of illness, diseases and deaths. Current and recent
activities include investigation of the health effects of air
pollutants, pesticides, and other chemical exposures.

Continuing public health oversight of environmental regulatory
programs within Cal/EPA.

Making recommendations to the Department of Fish and Game and
the State Water Resources Control Board with respect to sport
and commercial fishing in areas where fish may be contaminated.

Assessing health risks to the public from air pollution,
pesticide and other chemical contamination of food, seafood,
drinking water, and consumer products. Providing guidance to
local health departments, environmental departments, and other
agencies with specific public health problems, including
appropriate actions to take in emergencies that may involve
chemicals. Implementing the provisions of the Safe Drinking
Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Proposition 65).

These responsibilities are fulfilled by a highly trained
professional staff of about 110 individuals. Of these staff, 64
hold doctoral degrees, seven are physicians, and 21 hold masters
degrees in public health or science. OEHHA is budgeted in fiscal
year 2001-2002 for approximately ม million. OEHHA is
headquartered in Sacramento and has a second office in Oakland.


[Summary provided by OEHHA]