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Environment FAQs

For information about requesting public records from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, see the eDocument Search Engine.

For information about getting your well water tested, see Ohio Environmental Protection Agency's certified laboratories.

An environmental emergency is an immediate and significant threat to public health and/or the environment due to the release of materials to the environment. While an emergency can also constitute a violation, an emergency should be reported immediately to the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency's 24-hour spill hotline at 1-800-282-9378 or (614) 224-0946. Examples of emergencies to be reported include:

  • Petroleum spills;
  • Chemical spill;
  • Fires involving chemicals and/or petroleum;

Accidents causing the release of pollutants to Ohio's waterways. Industrial chemicals when not properly managed can cause environmental problems; in addition, spills of materials that seem harmless can cause environmental harm if not properly addressed. For example, large spills of milk and molasses have caused fish kills in Ohio streams.

To contact the Ohio EPA or a non-emergency, see epa.ohio.gov/Contact.

Common household products containing hazardous materials can pose a threat to people and the environment, especially when handled or disposed of improperly.

Learn how to get rid of hazardous materials.

Recycling and litter prevention activities across the state are controlled locally. See the recycling and litter prevention map to quickly find information for your county.

If your local solid waste management district can't take certain items, see other options for recycling and donation.

Public water systems are required to monitor their water regularly for contaminants. Currently, more than 95 percent of community water systems meet all health-based standards. When a system doesn't meet a standard, consumers are notified. Notifications may be in the form of signs or multimedia announcements. Advisories are also posted on the public drinking water advisories map.

Most permits are available through the Environmental Protection Agency's eDocument search engine.

View the Current Air Quality Map and learn more about air quality, including how it affects your health.

Check BeachGuard for harmful algae and other advisories.

Vehicles are required to be tested every two years. Vehicles with an even-number model year will be inspected in even years. For example, a 2004 vehicle will be tested in 2012, 2014, etc. Vehicles with an odd-number model year will be inspected in odd years. For example, a 2005 vehicle will be tested in 2011, 2013, etc. Since the compliance certificate is good for 365 days, we recommend that you have your vehicle tested far in advance of the registration expiration date

The seven Ohio counties currently participating in the program include: Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage and Summit.

Go to ohioecheck.info for more information and answers to frequently asked questions.

Find self- and full-service E-Check testing locations — includes important information about closures.