United States
                  Environmental Protection
                      Policy, Planning,
                      and Evaluation
                      [Mail Code 2129]
April 1997
                  What Is Project  XL?
                  Excellence and  Leadership  in
                  Environmental  Protection
Project XL is a national pilot program that tests innovative ways of
achieving better and more cost-effective public health and environmental
protection. Through site-specific agreements with project sponsors, EPA
is gathering data and project experience that will help the Agency
redesign current approaches to public health and environmental
protection. Under Project XL, sponsors - private facilities, industry
sectors, Federal facilities, and communities - can implement innovative
strategies that produce superior environmental performance, replace
specific regulatory requirements, and promote greater accountability to
stakeholders. Because the number of XL projects is limited to 50,  it is
vital that each project tests ideas with potential for wide application and
broad environmental benefits.

To participate in Project XL, applicants must have a good compliance
history and develop alternative environmental management strategies
that:  (1) produce superior environmental results; (2) utilize regulatory
flexibility to cut costs and reduce paperwork; (3) are supported by
stakeholders; (4) achieve innovation/pollution prevention; (5) are
transferable to other facilities; (6) are feasible; (7) identify monitoring,
reporting, and evaluation methods; and (8) avoid shifting the risk burden.
Additionally, community applicants should:  (1)  present economic
opportunity; and (2) incorporate community planning. Projects are
selected by EPA on an on-going basis, and they must have the full
support of State and tribal governments.

Before formally  proposing an XL project to EPA, project sponsors should
do as much groundwork as possible to develop their ideas and engage
stakeholders. EPA stands ready to help. Once a proposal is received,
its full content, a proposal summary, and subsequent materials about the
proposal are placed and updated on the Project XL  Internet Website
(http://www.epa.gov/ProjectXL).  If EPA and the affected States and
tribes determine that a proposal should move forward, it proceeds  to the
proposal development phase.
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                    Proposal Development: In this phase, a cross-agency proposal
                     team, consisting of representatives from EPA Headquarters, Regions,
                     and States, reviews the proposal and determines additional
                     information needed to evaluate the proposal.

                     The sponsors, together with any stakeholders who have been
                     identified at this point, determine whether to provide additional
                     information requested by EPA, submit a revised proposal, or withdraw
                     the proposal. After all information is complete,  EPA assesses the
                     merits of the proposal relative to the Project XL decision criteria.
                     Decisions to advance or reject proposals are made by the EPA
                     Associate Administrator for Reinvention in consultation with other
                     members of the Agency's senior leadership team.  Such decisions will
                     be made in close consultation with the relevant State or tribal
                     environmental agency, and no XL project will proceed without the
                     approval of the State or tribe.

                    Project Development: Once proposals advance to the project
                     development phase, the sponsor, EPA, State, other co-regulators, and
                     direct participant stakeholders negotiate a Final Project Agreement
                     (FPA). The FPA outlines the details of the project and each party's
                     commitments. Specifically, the participants define the innovation to be
                     tested, what superior environmental performance must be achieved,
                     what flexibility EPA and other co-regulators will  provide, what
                     conditions must be met, and how results will be monitored and
                     reported. After the FPA is signed, the project moves into the
                     implementation phase, where the details of the  FPA become operating

                   XL Facility Projects: A total of 47 proposals have been reviewed to
                   date. Three projects - Weyerhaeuser Flint River Operation, Intel
                   Corporation, and Berry Corporation - have a signed FPA and are  being
                   implemented.  Seventeen are  in some phase of proposal or FPA
                   development, two of which are expected to sign the FPA shortly.
                   Twenty-four have  been withdrawn or rejected, and three, because of XL
                   staff facilitation, will be implemented outside the XL program.

                   XL Community Projects: A total of 16 have been reviewed to date.
                   One project is expected to sign an FPA shortly. Eight are in the proposal
                   or FPA development phase, and eight have been  withdrawn or rejected.

FOR ELECTRONIC  More information about Project XL is available on  the Internet at
INFORMATION     http://www.epa.gov/ProjectXL, via Project XL's automated phone line at
                   202-260-2220, or via Project XL's Information Line at 703-934-3239.
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