[Federal Register Volume 70, Number 203 (Friday, October 21, 2005)]
[Notices]
[Pages 61289-61290]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 05-21094]


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ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

[FRL-7983-8; E-Docket ID No. ORD-2005-0021]


Additional Proposed Indicators for the U.S. EPA's 2007 Report on 
the Environment

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Notice of public comment period.

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SUMMARY: EPA is announcing a 30-day public review and comment period on 
several Additional Proposed Indicators--EPA ROE 2007. These proposed 
indicators are in addition to the proposed indicators that were the 
subject of a June 6, 2005, Federal Register notice (70 FR 32769) that 
announced both a public comment period and an independent peer-review 
workshop that was held on July 27-29, 2005. Several of these additional 
indicators were added in response to comments from the first peer-
review regarding additional indicators needed. Others were evaluated 
during the first review but have changed substantially and therefore 
warrant re-review; and a few are indicators for which materials were 
not ready at the time of the initial review. In addition to the public 
comment period, this set of additional proposed indicators will also 
undergo independent expert peer-review. The peer-review for this 
smaller set will be conducted via letter review. ERG, an EPA contractor 
for external scientific peer-review, is conducting this independent, 
external, peer-review and will engage the same expert panel that 
reviewed the first set of proposed ROE 2007 indicators. This public 
comment period, however, provides an opportunity for all stakeholders 
to weigh in on the primary contents of the draft 2007 Report on the 
Environment (EPA ROE 2007) at an early stage. In preparing the EPA ROE 
2007, EPA will consider ERG's report of the comments and 
recommendations from this expert peer-review and any public comments 
EPA receives in accordance with today's notice.
    EPA is releasing these proposed indicators for public comment and 
for the purpose of pre-dissemination peer-review under applicable 
information quality guidelines. These indicators have not been formally 
disseminated by EPA. They do not represent and should not be construed 
to represent any Agency policy or determination.

DATES: The 30-day public comment period begins October 21, 2005, and 
ends November 21, 2005. Comments must be postmarked by November 21, 
2005.

ADDRESSES: The Additional Proposed Indicators--EPA ROE 2007 are 
available primarily via the Internet at: www.epa.gov/ROEindicators. 
Each of the proposed additional indicators can be downloaded separately 
from this Web site in the PDF format. A limited number of electronic 
copies on compact disc (CD) are available from the National Center for 
Environmental Assessment's Technical Information Staff, NCEA-W; 
telephone: 202-564-3261; facsimile: 202-565-0050. If you are requesting 
a CD, please provide your name, your mailing address, and the document 
title, ``Additional Proposed Indicators--EPA ROE 2007.''
    Public comments may be submitted electronically via EPA's E-Docket, 
by mail, by facsimile, or by hand delivery/courier. Please follow the 
detailed instructions for submission of public comments as provided in 
the section of this notice entitled SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information on the public comment 
period, contact the OEI Docket; telephone: 202-566-1752; facsimile: 
202-566-1753; or e-mail: ORD.Docket@epa.gov.
    If you have technical questions about the Additional Proposed 
Indicators--EPA ROE 2007, contact: Julie Damon, National Center for 
Environmental Assessment (8601D), U.S. EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, 
NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone: 202-564-3404; facsimile: 202-565-
0065; or e-mail: damon.julie@epa.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

About the Report on the Environment and the Proposed Indicators--EPA 
ROE 2007

    In June 2003, EPA published its first national Draft Report on the 
Environment, using available indicators and data to answer questions 
pertaining to national environmental and human health conditions. At 
that time, EPA released two companion documents--one for readers with a 
general interest in the environment (Draft Report on the Environment 
Public Report) and another for more technical readers (Draft Report on 
the Environment Technical Document). These draft documents utilized 
indicators to describe the then current environmental conditions, 
trends, and data gaps.
    Shortly after the release of the 2003 draft documents, EPA 
announced that it planned to release the next Report on the Environment 
in 2007. Activities related to the development of EPA's 2007 ROE have 
been ongoing since release of the 2003 draft documents. As in 2003, EPA 
anticipates the 2007 ROE will include the release of two paper 
documents--one for readers with a general interest in the environment 
(a Public Report) and another for more technical readers (a Technical 
Document). EPA also intends to make the information in the 2007 ROE 
available as an interactive, searchable Web site--the ``e-ROE.'' The 
Technical Document will provide the scientific foundation for the more 
general Public Report and the e-ROE. EPA plans to use the Technical 
Document to present and discuss indicators that are currently available 
to answer the questions posed in the ROE 2007.
    EPA encourages the public to submit comments on whether these 
additional indicators proposed to be included in the EPA ROE 2007 
Technical Document are supported by data that are technically sound, 
meet the established indicator definition and criteria, and help answer 
the questions posed in the ROE 2007. In addition, EPA welcomes comments 
on any other aspect of the proposed indicators that the public would 
like to share with the Agency. After ERG provides EPA with a report of 
the peer-review on these additional proposed indicators, as well as the 
report resulting from the July 2005 peer-review workshop, EPA will 
consider ERG's report and the public comments. Any resulting revisions 
to the proposed indicators or any changes to the list of proposed 
indicators will be discussed within EPA and with our federal agency 
partners. The external review draft of the EPA ROE 2007 Technical 
Document is expected in summer/fall 2006.

How To Submit Comments to EPA's E-Docket

    EPA has established an official public docket for information 
pertaining to the Additional Proposed Indicators--EPA ROE 2007, Docket 
ID No. ORD-2005-0021. The official public docket is the collection of 
materials, excluding Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other 
information for which disclosure is restricted by statute, that is 
available for public viewing at the Office of Environmental Information 
(OEI) Docket in the Headquarters EPA Docket Center, EPA West Building, 
Room B102, 1301 Constitution Ave.,

[[Page 61290]]

NW., Washington, DC. The EPA Docket Center Public Reading Room is open 
from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal 
holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is 202-566-
1744, and the telephone number for the OEI Docket is 202-566-1752; 
facsimile: 202-566-1753; or e-mail: ORD.Docket@epa.gov.
    An electronic version of the official public docket is available 
through EPA's electronic public docket and comment system, E-Docket. 
You may use E-Docket at http://www.epa.gov/edocket/ to submit or view 
public comments, to access the index of the contents of the official 
public docket, and to view those documents in the public docket that 
are available electronically. Once in the system, select ``search,'' 
then key in the appropriate docket identification number.
    Certain types of information will not be placed in E-Docket. 
Information claimed as CBI and other information for which disclosure 
is restricted by statute are not included in the official public docket 
and also will not be available for public viewing in E-Docket. 
Copyrighted material will not be placed in E-Docket, but will be 
referenced there and available as printed material in the official 
public docket.
    If you intend to submit comments to EPA, please note that it is EPA 
policy to make comments available for public viewing just as they are 
received at the EPA Docket Center or in E-Docket. This policy applies 
to information submitted electronically or in paper form, except where 
restricted by copyright, CBI, or statute. When EPA identifies a comment 
containing copyrighted material, EPA will provide a reference to that 
material in the version of the comment placed in EPA's electronic 
public docket; the entire printed comment, including the copyrighted 
material, will be available in the official public docket.
    Public comments submitted on computer disks that are mailed or 
delivered to the docket will be transferred to E-Docket. Physical 
objects will be photographed, where practical, and the photograph will 
be placed in E-Docket along with a brief description written by the 
docket staff.
    You may submit comments electronically, by mail, by facsimile, or 
by hand delivery/courier. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, include the 
appropriate docket identification number with your submission. Please 
adhere to the specified submitting period; public comments received 
past the closing date will be marked ``late'' and may only be 
considered if time permits.
    If you submit public comments electronically, EPA recommends that 
you include your name, mailing address, and an e-mail address or other 
contact information in the body of your comment. Also include these 
contact details on the outside of any submitted disk or CD-ROM, and in 
any cover letter accompanying the disk or CD-ROM. This ensures that you 
can be identified as the person submitting the comment and allows EPA 
to contact you in case the Agency cannot read your submission due to 
technical difficulties, or needs further information on the substance 
of your comment. EPA will not edit your comment, and any identifying or 
contact information provided in the body of the comment will be 
included as part of the comment placed in the official public docket 
and made available in E-Docket. If EPA cannot read what you submit due 
to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, it 
may delay or preclude EPA's consideration of your comments.
    Electronic submission of comments via E-Docket is the preferred 
method for receiving comments. To access EPA's electronic public docket 
from the EPA Internet Home Page, select ``Information Sources,'' 
``Dockets,'' and ``EPA Dockets.'' Once in the system, select 
``search,'' and key in Docket ID No. ORD-2005-0021. The system is an 
``anonymous access'' system, which means EPA will not know your 
identity, e-mail address, or other contact details unless you provide 
it in the body of your comment.
    Comments may be sent by electronic mail (e-mail) to 
ORD.Docket@epa.gov, Attention Docket ID No. ORD-2005-0021. In contrast 
to EPA's electronic public docket, EPA's e-mail system is not an 
``anonymous access'' system. If you send an e-mail directly to the 
docket without going through EPA's E-Docket, EPA's e-mail system 
automatically captures your e-mail address, and it becomes part of the 
information in the official public docket and is made available in E-
Docket.
    You may submit comments on a disk or CD-ROM mailed to the OEI 
Docket mailing address. Files will be accepted in WordPerfect, Word, or 
PDF file format. Avoid the use of special characters and any form of 
encryption. If you provide comments in writing, please submit one 
unbound original with pages numbered consecutively, and three copies. 
For attachments, provide an index, number pages consecutively with the 
main text, and submit an unbound original and three copies.

    Dated: October 6, 2005.
Peter Preuss,
Director, National Center for Environmental Assessment.
[FR Doc. 05-21094 Filed 10-20-05; 8:45 am]
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