EPA 742/F-92/001
 Appendix C
 Pollution Prevention: EPA
 Statement of Definition
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Pollution Prevention: EPA Statement of
(pursuant to the Pollution Prevention Act of 199O
and the Pollution Prevention Strategy)
Under Section 6602(b) of the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990, Congress established
a national policy that:
•  pollution should be prevented or reduced at the source whenever feasible;

•  pollution that cannot be prevented should be recycled in an environmentally
    safe manner whenever feasible;

•  pollution that cannot be prevented or recycled should be treated in an environ-
    mentally safe manner whenever feasible; and

•  disposal or other release into the environment should be employed only as a
    last resort and should be conducted in an environmentally safe manner.

Pollution prevention means "source reduction," as defined under the Pollution Pre-
vention Act, and other practices that  reduce or eliminate the creation of pollutants
    —  increased efficiency in the use of raw materials, energy, water, or other
        resources, or

    —  protection of natural resources by conservation.

The Pollution Prevention Act defines "source reduction" to mean any practice which:
    —.  reduces the amount of any hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant
        entering any waste stream or otherwise released into the  environment
        (including fugitive emissions) prior to recycling, treatment, or disposal;
    —  reduces the hazards to public health and the environment associated with
        the release of such substances, pollutants, or contaminants.

The term includes: equipment or technology modifications, process or procedure
modifications, reformulation or redesign of products, substitution of raw materials,
and improvements in housekeeping, maintenance, training, or inventory control.
Under the Pollution Prevention Act, recycling, energy  recovery, treatment, and dis-
posal arc not included within the definition of pollution prevention.  Some practices
commonly described as "in-process recycling" may qualify as pollution prevention.
Recycling that is conducted in an environmentally sound manner shares many of the
advantages of prevention — it can reduce the need for treatment or disposal, and
consene energy and resources.

                            Pollution prevention approaches can be applied to all pollution-generating activity,
                            including those found in the energy, agriculture, federal, consumer, as well as indus-
                            trial sectors. The impairment of wetlands, ground water sources, and other critical
                            resources constitutes pollution, and prevention practices may be essential for pre-
                            serving these resources. These practices may include conservation techniques and
                            changes in management practices to prevent harm to sensitive ecosystems. Pollution
                            prevention does not include practices that create new risks or concerns.
                            In the agricultural sector, pollution prevention approaches include:
                                —  reducing the use of water and chemical inputs;

                                —  adoption of less environmentally harmful pesticides or cultivation of crop
                                    strains with natural resistance to pests; and

                                —  protection of sensitive areas.   ,

                            In the energy sector, pollution prevention can reduce environmental damages from
                            extraction, processing, transport, and combustion of fuels.  Pollution prevention ap-
                            proaches include:
                                —  increasing efficiency in energy use;

                                —  substituting environmentally benign  fuel sources;  and        .

                                —  design changes that reduce the demand for energy.