Intergovernmental Collaboration Saves Money


Agency: Environmental Protection Agency

Title: Intergovernmental Collaboration Saves Money

Background Information:

Dr. Denice Shaw, Technical Coordinator for EPA's Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP) in the Office off Research and Development (ORD), has saved the government $30 million over the past year by initiating and coordinating an agreement in which five government programs are working together to collect, process, and share satellite data for environmental monitoring.

This is a noteworthy example of how government cooperation and common sense, spurred by one person's creative thinking and initiative, can accomplish important work at significantly less cost to the taxpayer.

*Under the interagency agreement, EMAP and four other government environmental monitoring programs involving EPA, the U.S. Geological Survey, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration teamed to jointly acquire, process, archive and distribute Landsat data. This partnership is known as the Multi-Resolution Land Characteristics (MRLC) monitoring program.

*The agreement 1) eliminates overlap and duplication in government spending, and 2) avoids the need for agencies to "reinvent the wheel" by having each agency contribute to the process in the way that it has the expertise and experience to do best.

*Savings so far under the agreement: $20 million in image processing, $6 million in data management, and $4 million in data purchase.

*Without the agreement, t he agencies would have purchased the same Landsat data separately for use in different environmental monitoring programs. With the agreement, each agency receives the data it needs with less cost to the taxpayer.

Main NPR Category: Cutting Back to Basics, Cutting Red Tape

Related NPR Category: Employee Empowerment

Contact Person: Dr. Denice Shaw

Contact Phone: (919) 541-2698

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