United States
                   Environmental Protection
                               Office of the
                               [Mail Code 1802]
October 1998
                     Project XL:
                     Environmental  Results Program (ERP)
Project XL, which stands for "excellence and Leadership," is a national initiative
that tests innovative ways of achieving better and more cost-effective public
health and environmental protection. The experience and lessons learned from
Project XL will assist EPA in redesigning its current regulatory and policy-
setting approaches. Project XL encourages testing of cleaner, cheaper, and
smarter ways to attain environmental results superior to those achieved under
current regulations and policies. It also requires greater involvement by
stakeholders, i.e. the people and organizations affected by EPA's decisions.
Project XL is limited in scope, with a goal commitment of 50 pilot projects.
Therefore, it is vital that each project test new ideas with the potential for wide
application and broad environmental benefits.  As of October 1998, ten pilot
projects are being implemented and sixteen additional experiments are being
developed. Project XL offers a tremendous opportunity for everyone to think
"outside the box" of our current system and to find solutions to obstacles that
limit environmental performance.

The Environmental Results Program (ERP) was developed by the
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to streamline
permitting and reporting processes in the state for approximately 5,000 small
businesses to begin with, and possibly 10,000 by the end of the year. It will
reduce the number of traditional permits and reporting requirements through a
program of facility-wide, performance-based self-certification.  Industry
representatives have cooperated with Massachusetts DEP to establish criteria
for reporting compliance with stringent state performance and operating
standards in certain industrial categories, without developing permits for each
facility. The ERP currently applies to three industrial sectors-dry cleaners,
photo processors and printers. Massachusetts DEP will guide companies
through the process, providing explanations of laws and regulations and ideas
for meeting associated requirements.  The project is intended to  reduce
resources expended by both the DEP and industry in the permitting process,
as well as improve compliance by offering companies flexibility in pollution
prevention.  Massachusetts DEP believes that after an initial evaluation and
revision phase, the program will be transferable to other industry sectors
throughout Massachusetts and other states.

The Environmental Results Program will achieve superior environmental
performance beyond what is achieved by the current federal and state
regulatory systems. By converting permit requirements into industry-wide
performance standards, DEP anticipates superior environmental performance
since facility managers will be aware of their environmental obligations before
they  make decisions about modifying equipment and operations,  rather than at
the end of a long, expensive permitting process. For example,  the new system
is expected to reduce wastewater discharges of silver by 99 percent from
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photo processors, and to achieve a 43 percent reduction in emissions of
perchlorethylene from dry cleaners. Since all companies will ultimately be held
to strict ERP performance standards, environmental protection will be

ERP improves accountability and increases flexibility for companies. For the
first time ever, top management of the companies involved will certify annually
that their facilities are in compliance with all applicable air, water and
hazardous waste management performance standards.  Facilities not in
compliance will be required to specify interim  milestones toward achieving
compliance by a certain date. This will give companies more flexibility to
choose cost-effective compliance strategies for themselves, thereby reducing
the "time-to-market" for new products and removing regulatory obstacles to
pollution prevention.

As part of its draft Final Project Agreement, Massachusetts DEP will actively
work to ensure and maintain involvement of key stakeholders and the general
public in ERP implementation. DEP has been and will continue to work with an
ERP Design Team comprised of representatives from EPA, other government
entities, environmental advocacy groups, business and industry, consulting
firms, and the legal community.

The Massachusetts ERP has taken the bold step of streamlining permitting and
reporting processes for three industrial sectors in order to achieve more
effective environmental protection. ERP promises to make it easier for the
regulated community to meet and exceed Massachusetts' stringent
environmental standards by giving them flexibility to decide the best, most
cost-effective ways to comply with performance standards.
                    EPA HQ:
                   Thomas D'Avanzo
                   Chad Carbone
                   Alan Bedwell
                    More information about Project XL is available on the Internet at
                    http://www.epa.gov/Project XL, via Project XL's fax-on-demand line at 202-260-
                    8590, or via Project XL's Information Line at 703-934-3239.
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