Tag: Christine Osborne

Transparency in Government: DEQ’s Commitment to You

By Christine Osborne “Government records belong to the citizens of the state, who have a legal right to open and fair access.” – Utah’s GRAMA and Open Government website March 11-17, 2018 was Sunshine Week, a nationwide celebration of the benefits of open access to public information to citizens, communities, and government. Utah held its …

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DEQ Budget Priorities 2018: Putting Our Values into Action

By Scott Baird The 2018 Utah Legislature kicks off its 45-day session today, marking the start of an exciting and occasionally hectic time for all of us at the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Although we are neutral players in the legislative process, our directors and scientists are available 24/7 to answer questions, provide …

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Radon in Utah Homes: What You Don’t Know CAN Hurt You

By Jan Poulsen, Guest Blogger DEQ invites guest bloggers to share their thoughts on issues that impact our environment. We appreciate their insights and the opportunity to broaden the conversation with others in the community. My name is Jan Poulsen, and I am a lung cancer survivor. I want to share my story in the …

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Mining materials account for the largest proportion of TRI "releases" in Utah. Photo courtesy Flickr Creative Commons, photographer NewsRover.

The Toxic Release Inventory (TRI): What It Means, How It’s Used

By Christine Osborne The Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) is a public database that chronicles toxic chemical releases, transfers, waste management, and pollution-prevention activities throughout the United States. A recent Forbes article ranked Utah as the third-highest state in the country for toxic releases based on data in the TRI for the reporting year (RY) 2015. These same …

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Is there a “Phil” in your life?

May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor: Test Your Home for Radon Today

By Eleanor Divver You’ve probably heard about radon in the news, or maybe from a friend or neighbor. You may know that radon is a radioactive, cancer-causing gas. You may even know that it is the number-one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers. (You undoubtedly know that NASA didn’t bring it back from the moon, …

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DEQ Employees Embrace a Culture of Giving and Volunteerism

By Christine Osborne For over 60 years, the State Employee Charitable Fund Drive has provided state employees with the opportunity to contribute to the wide range of local non-profit organizations helping people in our communities. One hundred percent of the donations stay right here in the state! The 2017 drive raised over $350,000 for 60 …

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DWQ's Ben Brown sampling the San Juan River.

A Look Back: On the Scene after the Gold King Mine Spill

By Christine Osborne This week, we take a look back at DEQ’s response to the Gold King Mine release two years ago. On August 5, 2015, EPA contractors were clearing debris from the opening of the Gold King Mine near Silverton, Colorado, when the blockage gave way, releasing three million gallons of acid mine drainage into …

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DEQ, Schools Partner to Keep Kids Safe from Lead in Drinking Water

By Marie E. Owens   We have all heard about the lead contamination in Flint, Michigan’s drinking water. Some of you may have wondered if anything like this could happen here in Utah. While the natural water chemistry in Michigan is different than we have here, the major cause of that city’s problem was a …

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New Technical Center Good News for DEQ, the Environment

By Brad Johnson Reliable, science-based information is essential to ensuring the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) makes the best possible decisions and fulfills its mission to safeguard Utah’s air, land, and water. We use the data we collect to protect and inform the public, verify compliance with regulatory standards, and collaborate with local and …

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Legislative Session Helps Us All Breathe a Little Easier

By Scott Baird The whirlwind of Utah’s 45 day legislative session is over, the dust has settled,  and we at the Department of Environmental Quality want to thank you for helping this session to be a success. The appropriations and legislation approved in this session will ensure that the Department can continue its ongoing work …

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Water, Water, Everywhere: Is Your Drinking Water Safe after a Flood?

Over the past month, snowpack runoff, wet weather, and warm conditions have led to major flooding in northern Utah. When the Bear River crested in mid-February 2017, Garland City, Tremonton, Bothwell, Thatcher, East Garland Park, Riverside, Fielding, Plymouth, Corinne, Deweyville, Portage, and areas below the Cutler dam were hit with area-wide flooding. Roads and railroad …

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DEQ’s Budget Priorities Reflect Our Values

By Scott Baird The 2017 Utah Legislature kicked off its 45-day session last week, marking the start of an exciting and occasionally hectic time for all of us at the Utah Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ). Although we are neutral players in the legislative process, our directors and scientists are available 24/7 to answer questions, …

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DEQ Makes the Season a Little Brighter with Holiday Charity Drive

Interview with Heather Pattee by Christine Osborne How did the DEQ Holiday Charity Drive get started? Dianne Nielson, Utah Department of Environmental Quality Executive Director for 13 years, began the tradition. About a year after Amanda Smith came on board as executive director, I volunteered to head up the drive. I’ve been doing it for …

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