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Partner Profiles: Environmental Council of the States (ECOS)

Organizational Mission/Goals

To improve the environment of the United States, the Environmental Council of States (ECOS) will:

  • Champion the role of States in environmental management; and
  • Provide for the exchange of ideas, views and experiences among States; and
  • Foster cooperation and coordination in environmental management; and
  • Articulate state positions to Congress, federal agencies and the public on environmental issues.

About ECOS

Established in 1993, ECOS is the national non-profit, non-partisan association of state and territorial environmental commissioners. Its members are the women and men that lead the states' and territories' environmental agencies. ECOS works by connecting states with each other, and with federal partners and others, to help share experiences about how to best manage the environment. In addition to ECOS officers, a 28-member Executive Committee governs the organization. Standing committees address Air, Water, Waste, Compliance, Planning, and Cross-Media. There are also quite a few "forums" that work with ECOS federal agency partners and "work groups" that focus on particular issues.

Partnership Activities with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

ECOS established its Environmental Health Forum in 2003, in response to the nationally increasing interest in establishing closer links between state health agencies and state environment agencies and to track links between environmental conditions and health outcomes. Other developments, such as CDC establishing a National Environmental Public Health Tracking Network and analyses by the Pew Environmental Health Commission of limitations in existing data about environmentally influenced non-infectious diseases, create new challenges and new opportunities for leaders of environmental agencies.

CDC also supports work through the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) to inform states that have not yet received funding from CDC for the tracking initiative. ASTHO and CDC are interested in working with ECOS to meet the needs of the state environmental agencies. These needs include helping all state environmental agencies assess and understand how they can both assist and benefit from development of the network. ECOS is developing materials to inform state environmental agencies about tracking. In collaboration with ASTHO, ECOS is also working to increase collaboration between state health and environmental agencies.

Contact Information

Carol A. Leftwich, MS
Senior Project Manager
Environmental Council of the States
444 N Capitol St, NW, Suite 445
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 624-3661
Fax: (202) 624-3666

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