The Certified Environmental Professional (CEP) Program began in 1979. In that first year, ten environmental professionals were awarded the CEP designation. Since that time the CEP logo has been trademarked by the US Patent & Trademark Office, and the credential has achieved international recognition. At its inception, the CEP Program operated under the auspices of the National Association of Environmental Professionals and the CEP credential could only be awarded to NAEP members. In 1993, after 14 years of operation, NAEP transferred the CEP program itself to a subsidiary body – The Academy of Board Certified Environmental Professionals (ABCEP) which continues to operate the program today.
In 1999, ABCEP was incorporated as a non-profit organization, independent of NAEP. Since then, the CEP designation has been made available to the broader environmental community. As a result, the number of CEPs has grown and several organizations, in addition to NAEP, endorse ABCEP as their recommended organization for certification.
ABCEP has added a new program for environmental professionals who do not meet the qualifications of the CEP but desire to eventually obtain the CEP certification. Applying for the "CEP-IT" registers you with ABCEP and provides you with a mentor to guide you on the path to the CEP.