Environmental Quality

The Office of Environmental Quality (OEQ) administers the City's air, water, and noise improvement programs, which help preserve and protect the environment and public health and welfare.

Page updated on Jul 26, 2016 at 11:33 AM


Stay informed with eNews! - Receive information about programs, special events, community meetings, current Eco-City Alexandria events, and more.   Subscribe to eNews category T&ES Environmental News.

Upcoming Events

Calendar Placeholder New Link

What is New?

City of Alexandria to Host 23rd Annual Alexandria Earth Day on April 30

Choose To Reuse -- Your Choices Matter

For Immediate Release: April 18, 2016

On Saturday, April 30, join the City of Alexandria for the 23rd Annual Alexandria Earth Day and Arbor Day celebration. This year’s event is at a new location: the Lenny Harris Memorial Fields at Braddock Park, 1005 Mount Vernon Ave., adjacent to the George Washington Middle School. The celebration begins at 10 a.m. and will run until 2 p.m. Admission is free; food and beverages will be sold.

This family-friendly event includes the Sixth Annual Upcycling Showcase, featuring students from Alexandria City Public Schools who will show their upcycling creations based on the theme,“Choose to Reuse—Your Choices Matter.” 

Other activities include:

  • “Tent Talks,” featuring topics such as recycling in Alexandria; choosing native plants in Alexandria; oyster restoration; and live animal exhibits
  • The Eighth Annual Ellen Pickering Award presentation
  • Arbor Day Tree Planting
  • Live animal exhibits
  • Live music by local artists
  • Environmental education exhibitors and plant giveaways

For a complete list of activities, visit www.alexandriava.gov/Earthday.

Alexandria Earth Day is based on the need to promote education and lead us all to a green and sustainable future, in keeping with the goals of the Eco-City Alexandria Initiative.  The Alexandria Earth Day Committee has committed to making this event a zero-waste and carbon neutral.

The public is encouraged to take public transit, walk or bike to the event.

  • Bicyclists may visit alexandriava.gov/Localmotion for the City's Bikeways Map, which features the City's best on-street and off-road bikeways.
  • For DASH bus route and schedule information, call 703.370.DASH or visit www.dashbus.com.
  • For Metrorail and Metrobus schedule information, call 202.637.7000 or visit www.wmata.com.

This year, DASH will be offering free rides for the event on the DASH AT8 bus from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on April 30.  Visit alexandriava.gov/Earthday for a printable pass to ride DASH to the event. 

Parking is available in the George Washington Middle School parking lot, adjacent to the Lenny Harris Memorial Fields.

In case of inclement weather, the event will be relocated to the George Washington Middle School, 1005 Mount Vernon Avenue.

For more information, visit www.alexandriava.gov/Earthday or call the Special Events Hotline at 703.746.5592.

Check This Out!

  • City Recognizes Closure of GenOn Potomac River Generating Station
    For decades, the GenOn Potomac River Generating Station was one of the largest sources of air pollutants in Northern Virginia. The closure of this facility today was a culmination of outreach and civic engagement from residents and local officials for more than 10 years. Closing down this coal-fired power plant is consistent with the City’s Eco-City Alexandria’s Environmental Action Plan, which focuses on environmental sustainability and long-range environmental planning efforts. For more information, visit www.alexandriava.gov/GenOn.

  • Visit the Virtual Green Building Resource Center                                                                                                          
    The Green Building Resource Center (GBRC) is one of the City's latest Eco-City Alexandria initiatives, offering citizens and business owners information on how to reduce energy and water consumption and operating costs by offering practical solutions to design, build and maintain their spaces in an eco-friendly manner. We welcome all citizens to visit the site periodically for new technical articles, event updates, and local case studies at https://www.alexandriava.gov/gbrc.  
  • Awards and Accomplishments 

  • More News & Events  



Air Quality  


Stormwater Management  


Noise Control  


Mirant Potomac River Generating Station  


Contaminated Lands  


Other Programs and Projects 



OEQ performs the following tasks in an effort to achieve the environmental goals established in the City Council's Strategic Plan (Adopted 2004, Revised 2006 & 2010) which states that "Alexandria respects, protects and enhances the health of its citizens and the quality of its natural environment."

  • Monitors air and water quality.
  • Investigates pollution complaints.
  • Reviews development plans with regard to water quality impacts.
  • Ensures compliance with the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act.
  • Issues noise variance permits.
  • Inspects stormwater management facilities.
  • Supports open space preservation.
  • Participates in stormwater management and watershed planning and restoration initiatives.
  • Responds to citizen questions and concerns and provides information to the public on how to protect and improve the environment.

Additionally, OEQ advises and works with other City agencies and divisions on matters that impact the environment, and provides staff support to the City’s Environmental Policy Commission, which studies and makes recommendations on various projects and program initiatives that may have environmental impacts. The Commission meets on a monthly basis.