Decision Maker: A person or entity with jurisdiction to make legal decisions or judgments.

Environmental Protection Agency: The federal agency created by Congress to protect human health, natural resources, and the environment from pollution, to set limits for the emission of pollutants, and to enforce those limits.  Most states have their own state-created agency empowered to do the same within that state.

Information Collection: The gathering and analysis of information that is already publicly available.

Information Generation: The procurement of information that was previously uncollected, unknown, unreported, or unestablished in the realm of public knowledge.

Information Use: The ways in which information that is collected or generated during a citizen science project can be used.

Jurisdiction: The legal authority to make legal decisions or judgments.  It could be a local, state, or federal administrative agency, legislative body, or court.

Pollutant Source: An industrial facility, agricultural facility, land fill, sewage treatment plant, coal mine, etc.

Project Approach: An early design of a project comprised of two components: i) the identification of a site (i.e., location) of interest to you and ii) the determination of which pollutant or combination of pollutants are of concern to you and about which you will collect information and data.

Project Focus: The environmental question, theme and/or problem to which a project is directed.

Quality Standard: A legal standard that serves to establish a level of quality that the information must meet before it can be used in a certain way (e.g., in a court proceeding, in an agency decision, as the basis for an enforcement action or a policy determination).  The terms “credible information” or “reliable information” may be used in place of “quality information” in some contexts.

Site: location.

The terms defined here are bolded throughout the text of this manual.




Please note that this discussion is not moderated by the Emmett Environmental Law & Policy Clinic.