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Good Bye Registered Environmental Assessors (REA)

Entry by JoeDerhake


I was saddened to hear that California is discontinuing the Registered Environmental Assessors (REA) Program as of July 1, 2012.     A lot of my colleagues, inside and even outside of California, carry this registration and they are definitely deflated by this news.

This really increases the need for a national environmental professional certification program, especially for those that do not meet EPA’s definition of an environmental professional designation through a professional engineer or registered geologist certification plus three years of experience.

There are several organizations that offer environmental professional certifications but there is not one that is universally recognized.  It would be helpful for the EPA to give its blessing to one program that appropriately certifies professionals as meeting or exceeding the EPA’s definition of an environmental professional under the All Appropriate Inquiry rule, but that could be a long and drawn out process.

Options for Environmental Professional Certification

Elizabeth Krol did a lot of work on this subject and reported the following at the EBA in June, 2012 meeting.  Note that if anything below is wrong, don’t blame Elizebeth—I am not a great note taker!

International Society for Technical and Environmental Professionals [INSTEP] provides a certification, Licensed Environmental Professional [LEP] based on experience, education and the passage of an exam.  There is an annual Continuing Education requirement to maintain certification.

URL:  for their INSTEP Certification page.  At the bottom is a list of the standards and regulations the exam covers. 

The Institute of Hazardous Materials Management would be a good candidate for having a “Certified Environmental Professional” credential modeled similarly to its “Certified Hazardous Materials Manager (CHMM)” credential.  It is a well established and credible association with appropriate infrastructure in place (to qualify, re-certify and enforce a certification).

 Board of Certified Safety Professionals

 American Board of Industrial Hygiene

State Environmental Licenses

The following is a list of states that have some sort of certification programs:

The state of New Jersey has a relatively new test based LSRP Propgram through the DEP.   New Jersey Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP):

Massachusetts Licensed Site Professional (LSP)

Connecticut Licensed Environmental Professional (LEP)

Utah Environmental Health Scientist Act Rule
R156. Commerce, Occupational and Professional Licensing. … · PDF file

1 R156. Commerce, Occupational and Professional Licensing. R156-20a. Environmental Health Scientist Act Rule. R156-20a-101. Title.

Certified Professional in Ohio’s Voluntary Action Program

Texas Association of Environmental Professionals

Florida Association of Environmental Professionals

The Industry Needs A National REA Program!

In the past a lot of out of California EPs became REAs just to get a registrations, so now maybe California EPs need to get out of state registrations.   The industry would no doubt benefit from a nationally recognized certification. 

Also, in case you didn’t see the news on the REAs, here is the email sent to REAs by the State of California:

As part of the Budget, on June 27, 2012 the Governor also signed SB 1018 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review, Chapter 39, Statutes of 2012).  Among a number of other things, SB 1018 has repealed the Department of Toxic Substances Control’s (DTSC) authority for the Registered Environmental Assessors (REA) Program.  As of July 1, 2012, the REA Program will no longer exist.

DTSC proposed the elimination of the REA Program in this year’s budget considerations, primarily because DTSC believes that the program is unnecessary and unenforceable, and more importantly, it is largely duplicative of and inconsistent with federal environmental professional standards that have been adopted since the creation of the REA Program.  DTSC believes the elimination of the REA Program will standardize requirements for environmental professionals conducting environmental assessments under other statutory programs, and make them consistent with federal requirements.

REA I 2012 Annual fee payments received and the processing fee for new, five year renewal and reinstatement applications that were “pending” review will receive refunds in four to six weeks after July 1, 2012.   REA II will receive a prorated annual fee refund and the processing fee for “pending” applications.

Please note that the online registry will no longer be available after July 1, 2012.

We would like to thank you for your past support and participation to the program.


DTSC Management


Registered Environmental Assessors Program; Environmental Professionals, Environmental Site Assessment