In Major Victory for PEs, EPA Praises ‘Professional Engineer Model’

Monday, June 13, 2016

In a major victory for professional engineers, the Environmental Protection Agency’s final rule on emission standards in the oil and natural gas sectors asserts a strong, well- reasoned and well-supported rationale for the need for licensed professional engineers to be in responsible charge on all engineering projects, both in an independent third-party capacity, as well as in an in-house role. The rule states, “professional engineers, whether independent or employees of a facility, being professionals, will uphold the integrity of their profession and only certify documents that meet the prescribed regulatory requirements and that the integrity of both the professional engineer and the professional oversight of boards licensing professional engineers are sufficient to prevent any abuses.”

In a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy, NSPE President Tim Austin, P.E., F.NSPE, applauded the EPA “for recognizing the full value of engineering licensure and the need to require a licensed professional engineer for all engineering projects. EPA has provided a model that NSPE strongly advocates should be adopted by all other federal agencies. State licensing boards exist in each state and territory to oversee and regulate the practice of engineering. Licensed professional engineers have rigorous education, training and experience requirements. They are bound to hold the public health, safety and welfare above all other considerations.”

Read NSPE’s letter to the EPA and the pertinent section of the rule.