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EMS in Small to Medium-sized Businesses

Organization(s) Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Protection
Project Description MA DEP is engaged in the implementation of a Pollution Prevention Incentives for States (PPIS) grant whose purpose is to promote environmental management systems (EMS) in small to medium-sized businesses. Using a successful model provided by the Northeast Business Environmental Network (NBEN), twelve "pilot firms" participated in a mentoring program in which peers in their respective industries assisted them in adopting and implementing environmental management systems. As a part of the grant, a workshop was presented concerning performance measures to representatives of 30 interested firms. NBEN, the Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) and the Toxic Use Reduction Institute (TURI) engaged in outreach efforts to recruit small to mid-sized facilities for the pilot project.

The project consisted of three elements: improving performance of participating facilities, expanding access to Best Management Practices (BMPs) proscribed by environmental management systems, and reporting the positive results of the process to as many small to medium-sized firms as possible. Participating facilities were surveyed to determine gaps in their environmental performance. Based on this information, the appropriate industry peer met with facility managers and determined an implementation strategy. Metrics were established to measure performance and to justify operational changes at a facility.

Access to EMS training was facilitated by a series of workshops instructing facilities on various elements of EMS. The Northeast Business Environmental Network Web page included a new area detailing the status of the project and documenting case studies of the participating facilities. DEP promoted the goals and results of the project internally and externally to stakeholder groups through workshops, existing meetings, and newsletters. Finally, the project worked with EPA's StarTrack program to develop standards for 3rd party audits.

More Info www.epa.gov/p2/grants/ppis/1998.htm#region1
Project Contact
Name Paul Walsh
Phone 617-556-1011
Project Keywords
Areas of P2 Expertise Environmental Management Systems
Activity Keywords Training/workshops, Website updates
Newsletter Northeast States Pollution Prevention News - Vol. 9 No. 1, Winter 1999 [PDF]


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