This chapter examines three federal agencies that regulate health and safety activities in the public interest. They are the Environmental Protection Agency, responsible for the quality of air and water; the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, responsible for safety and health standards in industrial plants; and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, responsible for the health and safety standards for consumer products. There are various ways in which standards can be developed. One extreme is to define problem areas and write standards within the agency; the other extreme is to have problem areas defined and written by outside groups with near-automatic government approval. Problem definition is the first step in the development of standards. Problem definition consists of determining the types of pollutants to be regulated and the allowable pollution levels. The second step in the development of standards is the actual writing of the standards.