Three U.S. Companies Earn EPA's First-Ever Nod for Environmental 'Beyond-Compliance'

Three U.S. Companies Earn EPA's First-Ever Nod for Environmental 'Beyond-Compliance'

For the first time, EPA is recognizing corporate-wide environmental leadership under its National Environmental Performance Track program. EPA selected the following three companies as the first Performance Track Corporate Leaders: Baxter Healthcare Corp., a global medical products and services company, headquartered in Deerfield, Ill.; Johnson & Johnson, a global manufacturer of health care products, headquartered in New Brunswick, N.J.; and Rockwell Collins, a global provider of aviation electronic and communication solutions, based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

"The Performance Track Corporate Leader designation recognizes companies for their strong environmental performance beyond current regulatory requirements,'' said EPA Acting Administrator Steve Johnson. “This voluntary partnership program is based on the premise that government should complement its existing regulatory programs with new tools and strategies that not only protect people and the environment, but also capture opportunities for reducing cost and spurring technological innovation.''

To qualify for Corporate Leaders, companies must have a substantial number of facilities in Performance Track. For example, 44% of Baxter's major U.S. facilities are Performance Track members, as well as 82% of Johnson & Johnson's and 57% of Rockwell Collins'. The three companies promise to continuously improve their environmental performance and that of their suppliers and customers. Companies can improve the environmental performance of their customers by providing them information such as how to use a product or how to recycle. Other Corporate Leader qualification considerations include: a strong record of compliance with environmental regulations; robust corporate management of environmental issues; past and future commitments to environmental performance improvement; and public outreach and reporting on environmental achievements. Based on these criteria, each year EPA expects to invite a limited number of companies to apply for the Corporate Leader designation.

At EPA's Innovation Action Council (IAC) meeting yesterday in Washington, these corporations were recognized as Corporate Leaders. The IAC, which is comprised of EPA's top career officials, is responsible for advancing Agency innovations. The Corporate Leaders will also be recognized at EPA's Performance Track Annual Awards Dinner in Chicago on April 12.

Historically a facility-based program, Performance Track has added this Corporate Leader designation to recognize companies that have demonstrated a commitment to company-wide environmental excellence.

Since the program's inception in June 2000, Performance Track membership has grown and produced solid environmental results. The program currently has over 350 members in 46 states and Puerto Rico. To date, Performance Track members have collectively reduced their water use by 1.3 billion gallons and their generation of solid waste by nearly 970,000 tons, increased their use of reused or recycled materials by nearly 77,000 tons, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of 67,000 tons of carbon dioxide.

Performance Track encourages participation by small, medium and large facilities. The major industries are represented, with manufacturers of chemical, electronic and electrical, and medical equipment composing nearly 40% of the current members. The public sector is also represented by members such as national defense installations, postal facilities, and municipalities. Performance Track provides incentives that promote high levels of environmental performance and a learning network in which best practices are shared. More information on membership benefits is available online.
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