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PARTNERS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT

Over the last several years, an important change has been taking place in our national strategy for protecting the environment. Through an array of partnership programs that we collectively refer to as Partners for the Environment, EPA is demonstrating that voluntary goals and commitments achieve real environmental results in a timely and cost-effective way. In addition to traditional approaches to environmental protection, EPA is building cooperative partnerships with a variety of groups, including small and large businesses, citizen groups, state and local governments, universities and trade associations.

EPA's Partners for the Environment Programs are making a real difference by demonstrating that environmental improvements and cost savings result from their voluntaryactions. Partners for the Environment together:

Growing in Number and Savings

In 1997 the number of partners grew from 6,882 to 8,030, representing every major sectorof the economy, from Fortune 500 companies to small "mom and pop" shop owners. Collectively these businesses saved $1.6 billion and achieved measurable environmental results more quickly with lower costs. These compelling statistics demonstrate how partnershipprograms are not just good for the environment; they make good business sense and prove thatpollution prevention pays.

Setting our Sights on Goals for 2000

In 1995, EPA set goals for the year 2000 for the Partnership Programs. These goals areambitious, but as the table below demonstrates, some have already been exceeded, and are expected to continue to grow. There is continued confidence that the yet unmet goals will bereached. Industries' interest in voluntary efforts and EPA's dedication to partnering will keepthese numbers growing.

Measure

19951996

1997

Projected 2000

Toxics reduced(pounds)750,000,000750,000,000750,023,400 (1)Over 750,000,000 (2)
(exceeding in 1997)
Waste reduced (tons)1.85.27.678.3
CO2 prevented
(million metric tons)
13.424.779 210
Energy saved
(trillion BTUs)
1101991,020 935
(exceeding in 1997)
Water saved
(1m gallons)
 1.285.87.2
(exceeding in 1997)
Money Saved
(million $)
$360 million$852 million$1.6 billion$4.64 billion
Number of partners6,0146,8828,030 13,655



1. This is the cumulative reduction total of the 33/50 Program from 1988-1995 with minoradditions.

2. Although the 33/50 program set reduction goals for 1995, many participating companiesare continuing their ambitious reduction efforts beyond this date and others are including toxicreductions as part of other programs (i.e. XL, etc).

The results of the Partners for the Environment effort are impressive. Thousands of organizations are working cooperatively with EPA to set and reach environmental goals such as conserving water and energy, and reducing greenhouse gases, toxic emissions, solid wastes, indoor air pollution and pesticide risk. Our partners are making pollution prevention a central consideration in doing business.

By: EPA Partners for the Environment


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