Environmental Field Offices
The nearest Environmental Field Office (EFO) should be your starting point for any environmental question, concern, or complaint. The toll free number above will automatically forward you to the appropriate EFO. Environmental Coordinators are regionally available (*) to assist industries with permitting needs, outreach functions, and provide general guidance to the public. The addresses and direct telephone numbers of the primary EFO contacts can be found from the links listed above. If you are unsure of which EFO to send your e-mail, send it to [email protected].
Staffing at each EFO varies, but primarily consists of a Director, Administrator, Environmental Coordinator (*), and technical (regulatory division) staff. Select technical staff participate in an Emergency Response Team in each EFO.
Environmental Field Office Director
The EFO director has these primary job responsibilities:
- Local public contact for complaint resolution, improved communications, & TDEC local spokesperson
- Administratively responsible and accountable for the EFO and employees
- Direct supervisor of Environmental Field Office Managers, Environmental Coordinator, and Administrator
- Multi-media (Air, Land, and/or Water) coordination with Bureau of Environment, Division Directors, and other agencies
- Disseminate, distribute, & implement Bureau policies and procedures
- Direct supervision of Environmental Field Office Managers implementing yearly work plan developed by Division Directors and approved by Bureau of Environment
- Resolving EFO Media (Air, Land, and/or Water) jurisdictional issues
- Technical and managerial support for staff participating in enforcement of environmental standards
- Meets with or coordinates meetings with outside groups, legislative, and other state, federal agencies to solve critical problems and develop relationships for implementing policies of the department
The Environmental Coordinator (EC) position was designed to improve Tennessee's environmental permitting procedures and customer service. The Environmental Coordinators
- coordinate multiple program permits for new industries
- manage regional community outreach
- act as a regional contact for the Office of Environmental Assistance (pollution prevention, grant programs)
- act as a regional contact for the Department's environmental justice project
- provide compliance information and technical assistance to citizens
The EFO Administrator and their staff provides support to all citizens who contact the EFO by providing assistance as needed to initially determine which environmental division(s) or staff member(s) to contact in resolving their environmental questions and concerns. They also collect applications and fees for environmental services and coordinate file reviews for customers. This group provides support internally to all EFO staff by providing overall administrative management as well as services that include data entry and data management, records maintenance, reporting leave and attendance, inventory control, coordination of employee training, as well as general secretarial and clerical support.
Staffing varies in each EFO and houses representatives from most media (Air, Land, & Water). Media are further subdivided into specific Bureau of Environment regulatory divisions (Air Pollution Control, Groundwater Protection, Radiological Health, Solid and Hazardous Waste Management, Remediation, Underground Storage Tanks, Water Pollution Control, Water Supply). In some instances an EFO may not have representatives from all Divisions but rather may be served by staff from a neighboring EFO or the Divisionís Central Office. The technical staff of each EFO are listed in the individual EFO information from the links provided above (TOP). Some Conservation employees are also housed at the EFO including The Division of Natural Areas and Recreational Educational Services. Much of the Division of Groundwater Protection's staff, who permit household subsurface septic systems, are housed and based out of local County Health Departments, Building and Zoning Departments, and/or other County facilities.
Emergency Response Team
The Emergency Response Team (ERT) is composed of individuals from various divisions who respond to environmental emergencies as an additional duty. Depending on the situation, team members from the appropriate programs are dispatched to provide regulatory oversight and technical advice. These personnel are not trained or equipped for conducting emergency response operations, but are there to assist local emergency management personnel, the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, and other responders such as industry personnel or emergency response contractors.
Each ERT has a Leader and an Alternate Leader who are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to provide this assistance. In addition, each division has a state-wide Emergency Services Coordinator (ESC) who can be called upon for advice or for help in obtaining additional resources. These ESCs staff the State Emergency Operations Center when it is activated.