Requesting Public Records

DEQ is committed to transparency and providing access to public documents for citizens, organizations and media.

To request a record, simply fill out the online Public Records Request form.

Many public records are already available online. Before submitting a request, check the online documents and ArcGIS tools on the Online Public Records page. 

DEQ does its best to fulfill records requests in the order they are received. Please include as much specific information as possible (dates, addresses, specific keywords, permit numbers, etc.) to help expedite your request. Please allow additional time for large requests or requests that require additional review.

We will provide electronic copies when possible, however, in some cases a physical file review may be necessary. An appointment is required for physical file review. In most cases, there is no fee for public records. 

Under North Carolina public records law, DEQ is required to redact certain personal or confidential information. DEQ will make every effort to fulfill requests as promptly as possible.

Submitting a DEQ Public Records Request

  • 1

    Enter your information

    In the Public Records Request form, please provide your name and email address (required). You may also provide your phone number and organization. 

  • 2

    Enter the details of your records request

    Next, provide information about the public records you would like to request.

    From the dropdown options, select the DEQ Division related to your request. You may select one or more Divisions or select the "All Divisions" option if you are unsure.  Please note:

    • For stormwater record requests, please select the Division of Energy Mineral and Land Resources. 
    •  DEQ does not typically have septic system permits or information. Those records may be available at your local health department or with the N.C. Department of Health of Human Services.    
    • DEQ does not typically have asbestos removal files. Those records may be available in the NCDHHS Asbestos Program

    Next, select one or more record types. If you are unsure what type of record you are looking for, you can select "Unsure." You will be asked to enter additional information specific to email, document or Phase 1 records. Multiple types of records can be added to a single request.

    Finally, please describe the request and attach any necessary files. 

  • 3

    After submitting a records request

    • When possible, records will be provided to you in electronic format. If an in-person file review is necessary, someone will contact you to set up an appointment.
    • Records requests are processed in the order they are received.
    • Requests for email correspondence require a separate process and may take more time to fulfill than document requests. Being specific about the dates, people and keywords in your search will help speed processing of your request.

    If you need additional assistance or to check on the status of your request, please contact our Public Records team.

    If you are submitting a Phase I Assessment:

    Public information officers will search internal databases for your request. While you await a response, DEQ has several online databases you can search for relevant files.

    DEQ's Community Mapping System is a map-based search tool to view and access many permitting files across DEQ divisions.

    Air Quality:

    Energy, Mineral and Land Resources, including Stormwater:

    Water Resources:

    Waste Management:

    *Septic System information is available at the local health department or with the N.C. Department of Health of Human Services.

    Additional DEQ public records databases

    Please email Public Records or contact a DEQ Public Information Officer if you have questions about your request.