Rulemaking: From laws to environmental regulation

Bills become laws and state legislators design some Oregon laws to protect the environment. Most people understand that process. But what about rules that put environmental protection into action? That’s where DEQ comes in through rulemaking. DEQ proposes rules that define how the public and industry interact with the environment in an effort to benefitContinue reading “Rulemaking: From laws to environmental regulation”

Environmental Quality Commission selects Leah Feldon as new DEQ director

The Oregon Environmental Quality Commission today selected Leah Feldon as the new director of the Department of Environmental Quality. The commission’s vote was unanimous. The commission’s decision came after a seven-month nationwide search and included extensive input from the public and DEQ staff.

GUEST POST: Why do we encounter poor air quality in winter? LRAPA’s Travis Knudsen explains.

Oregon has some of the most beautiful and pristine skies in the United States. However, we can also experience poor air quality, and not just during wildfire season. In winter months, there are times when DEQ’s Air Quality Index indicates anything from “Moderate” to “Very Unhealthy” air, often due to stagnant air and inversions. Thankfully,Continue reading “GUEST POST: Why do we encounter poor air quality in winter? LRAPA’s Travis Knudsen explains.”

Preventing food waste while clearing out holiday leftovers

The holiday season may leave you with more food than you know what to do with, but don’t despair. Lauren and Dylan are here to help you prevent food waste while making all those leftovers disappear. Need more incentive to make food waste prevention not just a holiday tradition, but also a year-round habit? OnContinue reading “Preventing food waste while clearing out holiday leftovers”

Cleaning up mercury spills

Mercury is that strange element that looks like a liquid metal bead. Many adults played with it as children. Mercury was used in a bunch of household items – fluorescent bulbs, LCD screens, old appliances, batteries, thermometers and barometers – that are now at risk of spilling. Lauren and Dylan talk with U.S. Environmental ProtectionContinue reading “Cleaning up mercury spills”

Video – Where the Science Happens

At the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, we take our science seriously – nearly everything we do is backed by data and scientific analysis. Welcome to DEQ’s Lab, where the science happens. Learn more about DEQ’s Lab on our website. Video produced by Laura Gleim and Susan C. Mills. Narration by Blair Adams.


Last month we asked DEQ staff: how do you ensure facilities follow environmental laws? We learned a lot about how complaints get processed, when DEQ goes out to inspect facilities and how that can lead to enforcement and fines. This month, we’re talking about that enforcement process. Lauren and Dylan talk with DEQ enforcement staff,Continue reading “Enforcement”

Congratulations to DEQ’s 2022 graduates of ASCENT Transformational Leadership Program

One thing that hasn’t changed at DEQ is the belief that our strength is our people. That strength is reflected in these three inspiring graduates of the 2022 ASCENT Transformational Leadership Program. Congratulations Ximena Cruz Cuevas, Northwest Region cleanup program coordinator (left), Brian Stafki, Materials Management natural resource specialist (middle) and Laura Gleim, Eastern RegionContinue reading Congratulations to DEQ’s 2022 graduates of ASCENT Transformational Leadership Program

The Source

As National Source Water Protection Week comes to a close, the Drinking Water Protection staff at DEQ hopes more folks are aware of what we mean by the phrase source water protection. It is the core of our work, but it might not mean much to those outside our agency. As with many fields, the internal lingo often can be mysterious. In this case it’s not complicated. The place where one’s drinking water originates is its source area.