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DEQ’s Mission, Vision and Values Drive Our Work

DERR scientists ensure proper tank installation

Scientists from Utah DEQ’s Division of Environmental Response and Remediation ensure the proper installation of an underground storage tank.

By Scott Baird

In the coming year, we will be unveiling a series of videos through our YouTube channel and on the Utah DEQ Blog. These videos will highlight the incredible employees working at the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the important work they are doing to protect the health and welfare of Utah residents.

The short films will give you a behind-the-scenes look at how your taxpayer dollars are being spent and stress the importance of DEQ’s mission, vision and values—the guiding principles that direct our work.

You can follow the series by searching #IamUtahDEQ on social media, subscribing to our YouTube Channel or regularly checking the Utah DEQ Blog.

At the Utah Department of Environmental Quality, our job is to safeguard and improve Utah’s air, land and water through balanced regulations.

The dedicated scientists and engineers at DEQ are public servants. They are committed to protecting public health and ensuring Utah’s environmental resources are looked after and available for generations to come.

Utah DEQ Water Quality scientist

Scientists from Utah DEQ’s Division of Water Quality monitor the many waterways and water bodies in the state.

As a regulatory agency, it’s our job to implement and enforce state and federal laws. We write permits, monitor pollution levels, develop plans to improve environmental quality and provide financial assistance for infrastructure projects.

Utah residents enjoy swimming, boating and fishing at their favorite water spots. Maintaining these aquatic ecosystems is essential to more than just recreation. They are an integral part of our environment and a healthy life. At DEQ, we make sure Utah meets water-quality standards so that this natural resource is available for generations to come.

Along with local health departments and public water systems, we regulate safe drinking water. When you turn on your tap in Utah, you can rest easy that the water is safe and healthy.

We want people to experience Utah as a breath of fresh air. We work hard to make sure our state meets federal and state air-quality standards. As the air quality in Utah’s valleys continues to get better, we are here to ensure clear skies for years to come.

When it comes to land use, we protect the public’s health and the environment by supporting the cleanup of contaminated sites. Our staff helps restore blighted properties and bring them back into use. This allows for additional growth and more opportunities.

Ensuring solid and hazardous waste is disposed of properly is another one of our jobs. We also support recycling efforts, radon testing, and other good management practices that prevent contamination before it becomes a human health risk.

We are looking for sound solutions to complex problems. We actively engage stakeholders and are professional, responsive and fair.

We earn the public’s trust by showing we care, demonstrating expertise in our work, and basing our decisions on science and the law.

We take our responsibility for taxpayer dollars seriously. We work each day to improve our performance and better serve the people of Utah. We put in place innovations that advance quality, efficiency and effectiveness.

Through clean air, land and water, we are working to build a prosperous and healthy Utah where all of us can thrive.

As Executive Director, I enjoy working with legislators, stakeholders, and our employees in finding ways to improve how we do our work. Prior to joining DEQ, I worked in the Governor’s Offices in Utah and Washington and with Deloitte Consulting in D.C., where I helped state and federal agencies identify and implement opportunities to improve. I earned my Bachelor’s Degree at Brigham Young University and my Masters in Public Administration (MPA) and JD degrees from Syracuse University. I LOVE to get outdoors and enjoy SKIING, running, hiking, backpacking, camping, working in the yard, fixing up our broken-down house, and anything else I can convince my wife and four daughters to do with me … oh yeah, and I really like ice cream!