Updated: 20-Mar-2003 NATO Speeches

Round Table

20 March 2003

Seeking an Informed Balance Between Public Access to Environmental Information and Information Security

Mr. George Hull, Program Analyst
US Environmental Protection Agency

This presentation will discuss the contribution of publicly accessible environmental information (also known as Community Right-to-Know information) in the United States and the new challenge that this information faces due to increased concern over its potential misuse by terrorists.

It examines the mandate and success of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act, including the creation of State Emergency Response Commissions and Local Emergency Planning Committees.

This presentation will then frame the increased tension and debate between proponents of Community Right-to-Know information and proponents of increased national security.

The presentation will conclude with an argument that during this time of increased national security, a careful balance must be struck between these two concerns, a balance that fully considers the continuing safety benefits of publicly accessible information.

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