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Empirical Research: Environment

This guide will provide resources for empirical legal research including information on data sets and statistical packages.

United States

  • Envirofacts: an EPA that allows a user to search for data across a number of different EPA databases.  Possible topic searches include air, waste, toxics and facilities. 
  • Toxic Release Inventory: an EPA program that collects data on toxic chemical releases and waste management activities by certain industries.   Data exists from 1987 to 2017.
  • EPA Air: another EPA site that allows users to search for data on air pollution.
  • AirExplorer: a collection of EPA tools for air quality analysts.  Users can generate maps showing air pollution over time, graphs and download data for a specific time period.
  • National Geophysical Data Center: a part of NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmostpheric Administration), the Center's mission is to be a repository for geophysical and environmental data.  Data is available on topics such as coastlines, snow and ice, cosmic rays and ocean drilling.
  • Mineral Resource Data System: part of the USGS (United States Geological Survey) this system contains data on metallic and non-metallic mineral resources through the world. Information includes deposit name, location, commodity, production and reserves.

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  • Water Science Directors: this USGS webpage lists the directors of various state water science centers.  Most interesting is that when you click on the state name, you are taken to a USGS page on water data for that particular state.
  • Water Resources of New York: website of the USGS which has data on New York's rivers, lakes and groundwater.  Realtime as well as historical data are available.

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Foreign & International

  • OECD.StatExtract: OECD portal to a selection of OECD databases that can be accessed without subscription. Includes some data on water issues. 
  • FAO Statistics Portal: statistics portal of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.  Databases exist on topics such as agriculture, water, fisheries and forestry.
  • EuroStat: the data center of the European Union.  It includes datasets on environmental indicators, as well as publications.

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