Summary: S.3176 — 101st Congress (1989-1990)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed Senate amended (10/26/1990)

National Environmental Education Act - Directs the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to establish an Office of Environmental Education within EPA to carry out this Act.

Establishes an Environmental Education and Training Program to train educational professionals in the development and delivery of environmental education and training programs and studies. Directs the Administrator to make an annual grant to an institution of higher education or nonprofit institution to operate such program. Sets forth application and eligibility requirements and criteria to be considered in awarding such grants.

Authorizes the Administrator to enter into cooperative agreements or provide grants to support projects to design, demonstrate, or disseminate practices related to environmental education and training. Outlines activities eligible for grant support and priorities in awarding such grants. Requires the Administrator to publish an annual solicitation for environmental education grants. Authorizes local education agencies, colleges or universities, nonprofit agencies, or noncommercial broadcasting entities to apply for such grants. Limits Federal funds for demonstration projects to 75 percent of the total cost, except in specified instances. Limits such grants to $250,000 and requires 25 percent of all funds obligated to be for grants of no more than $5,000.

Requires the Administrator to provide for internships by postsecondary students and fellowships for in-service teachers with Federal agencies involved in environmental issues. Directs the Administrator, to the extent practicable, to support at least 250 internships and 50 fellowships annually. Makes eligible for participation in such program: (1) students enrolled at accredited colleges or universities who have successfully completed at least four courses or the equivalent in environmental studies; and (2) in-service teachers who are currently employed by local educational agencies and have at least two years' experience in teaching environmental education, environmental sciences, or related courses.

Requires the Administrator to provide for a series of national awards recognizing outstanding contributions to environmental education to include: (1) the Theodore Roosevelt Award for environmental teaching or administration; (2) the Henry David Thoreau Award for literature on the environment and pollution problems; (3) the Rachel Carson Award for film, broadcast, or print media for public education and information on environmental issues or problems; and (4) the Gifford Pinchot Award for education and training concerning forestry and natural resource management, including multiple use and sustained yield land management. Provides that recipients of such awards shall be nominated by the Environmental Education Advisory Council. Authorizes the Administrator to provide for the President's Environmental Youth Awards to be given to young people in grades kindergarten through twelfth for outstanding projects to promote local environmental awareness. Permits the Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality to administer an awards program to recognize elementary and secondary education teachers who advance environmental education through innovative approaches.

Establishes a National Environmental Education Advisory Council and Federal Task Force on Environmental Education. Requires the Council to report biennially to the Congress on: (1) the extent and quality of national environmental education; (2) activities conducted pursuant to this Act; (3) obstacles to improving environmental education; (4) training and skills needed to respond to environmental problems; and (5) the extent and quality of environmental education available to senior Americans.

Establishes the National Environmental Education and Training Foundation to: (1) encourage and administer private gifts in connection with EPA environmental education and training activities; (2) conduct other environmental education activities; and (3) participate with foreign entities in activities to further environmental education and training to address environmental issues involving the United States and Canada or Mexico.