Innovative Strategies Program

States in the Northeast have developed and deployed various innovative performance-focused strategies to promote environmental objectives. An Environmental Results Program (ERP) strategy is one of several of these kinds of initiatives that state agencies have undertaken. An Environmental Results Program (ERP) approach is cost-effective and flexible, improves environmental performance across entire business sectors and groups of small pollution sources, and uses existing government resources efficiently and strategically. ERP uses a unique combination of linked compliance assistance, compliance certification, and statistical performance measurement to leverage traditional compliance assurance inspection activities and achieve improved performance for the selected group.

Through the ERP methodology the state programs obtains statistically valid information to gain an understanding of the compliance problems of a group. This information then forms the basis for fact-based discussions and decisions on deploying and targeting limited inspection, assistance, and enforcement resources. ERP was developed by the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection in 1997. Business sectors addressed by state ERP efforts include dry cleaners, auto body shops, gas stations, printers, and many more.

States in the Northeast have adopted other innovative compliance approaches using a combination of compliance assistance and training coordinated with enforcement.

NEWMOA undertook several innovative compliance and ERP projects, including the Common Measures Project, the Auto Body Shops Project, and other activities from 2006 to 2017.