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New York Environmental Legal Research Guide: Quick Links - NYS & NYC

A legal resource guide for information relating to New York State and New York City environmental law including primary and secondary source materials, quick links, and database resources.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is the state agency responsible for protecting New York's environment and resources. The mission of the DEC is to"conserve, improve and protect New York's natural resources and environment and to prevent, abate, and control water, land and air pollution, in order to enhance the health, safety and welfare of the people of the state and their overall economic and social well-being." The Department ws created July 1, 1970, to create a single agency to protect the environment. The Department is led by a commissioner, assisted by executive managers. There are 24 divisions and offices that are themselves organized into bureaus to manage the functions of the Department.

The New York State Department of Transportation, Office of Environment prepares policies, procedures and technical guidance that allow the Department to identify and assess potential environmental issues. 

The Environmental Protection Bureau is part of the Office of the Attorney General's Social Justice Division. The Bureau works to enforce both the State's and the Nation's environmental laws. The Bureau is also responsible for representing the State of New York in any environment related legal matters. 

The Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) is a national, nonprofit, nonpartisan association of state and territorial environmental agency leaders established in December 1993. The purpose of ECOS is to improve the capability of state environmental agencies and their leaders to protect the environment of the United States.

The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is responsible for protecting public health and the environment through the provision of clean drinking water, collection and treatment of wastewater, reduction of air, noise, and hazardous materials pollution.

There are many groups advocating for the environment in New York State. Links to some groups and resources for finding others are provided.