Regional Highlights Pacific Northwest
Pollution Prevention Roundtable
October 28-29, 1998 in Seattle, Washington — Executive Summary

The following information is summarized from the October 1998 Northwest Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable meeting. Full meeting minutes also are available.

 

dot GOALS AND AUDIENCES

Goals of the meeting included: 1) Building an understanding of connections between technical assistance and salmon restoration, 2) Developing ideas on technical assistance approaches that deliver environmental and economic results, using salmon as an indicator, 3) Documenting information resources available to assistance providers and building productive working relationships among different provider groups, and 4) Developing promising and reliable approaches for measuring program results.

Audiences were P2 technical assistance providers and policy staff, compliance assistance providers, and Industrial Technical Assistance Providers.

 

dot ROUNDTABLE INTRODUCTION

Madeline Sten, Pacific Northwest Pollution Prevention Resource Center (PPRC)
     206-352-2050, msten@pprc.org, http://www.pprc.org/pprc
Ron Kreizenbeck, EPA Region 10 Office of Enforcement
     206-553-1265, kreizenbeck.ron@epa.gov, http://www.epa.gov/region10

Assistance programs have an opportunity to play an important role in restoring endangered salmon and steelhead runs, since enforcement alone is not likely to restore them. Heavy reliance on voluntary compliance programs creates an opportunity for TAPs. Assistance programs can improve their effectiveness by working together. EPA Region 10 is adopting a compliance assistance strategy that will include information sharing and new ways to measure results.

Salmon Information Resources:
      • PPRC – http://www.pprc.org/pprc/pubs/newslets/news0898.html
      • Salmon Information Center – http://www.salmoninfo.org
      • Oregon Plan for Salmon and Watersheds – http://www.oregon-plan.org
      • Northwest Power Planning Council – http://www.nwppc.org

 

dot PRESENTATIONS

Linking Assistance Programs to Salmon Recovery Efforts and Other Environmental Impacts

Angus Duncan, Columbia/Pacific Institute and Bonneville Environmental Foundation
503-725-8101, aduncan@transport.com

There are many causes for the decline of salmon, because people’s activities have affected all stages of their complex life history. For example, streams have been polluted by runoff and high temperatures. Dams create warm, slackwater pools. Hatchery-reared salmon compete with wild salmon.

Salmon are a useful context for defining our relationship to the environment. The key to restoring salmon is to lighten society’s "footprint" by moving from a "development model," in which resources are fully exploited, to an "ecological model," in which resources are managed sustainably. The science of salmon recovery must be translated into understandable language that relates to business and people’s everyday concerns. Assistance providers have a role to play in bridging the gap between science that identifies problems and solutions, and behavior change needed to put solutions into effect.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

The Challenge: What Is Expected of Assistance Providers

Fred Colvin, Doelman Dairy Farm – 360-273-7379
Kathy Fletcher, People for Puget Sound – 206-382-7007
     kfletcher@pugetsound.org, http://www.pugetsound.org
Chris Wiley, PPRC – 206-352-2050
     cwiley@pprc.org, http://www.pprc.org/pprc

Other Scheduled Panelists:
Ken Grimm, Capital Industries – 206-762-8585
Sydney Randell, U.S. Postal Service – 206-625-7004
     srandell@email.usps.gov, http://www.usps.gov/environ

Fred Colvin: Agriculture has received mixed, confusing messages about the non-point source compliance requirements farmers face. Agriculture needs consistency and predictability. A good resource for delivering P2 and conservation information is resource conservation districts (directory available at http://www.nacdnet.org).

Kathy Fletcher: Non-government organizations do not want to see technical assistance posed as an alternative to enforcement, but as a complement to enforcement. Lack of enforcement will deter P2 implementation.

Chris Wiley (formerly with Capital Industries): The three ways that assistance providers can be of greatest service to business is to train employees, understand business needs, and encourage them to begin adopting P2 through small, easily managed projects. Translate environmental science into understandable language.

Other Discussion: A combination that seems to work is setting clear, measurable performance standards, but deferring to local knowledge in determining ways of achieving the standards. Marketplace incentives, such as price premiums for products made through environmentally sound practices, may be a tool for encouraging adoption of the "ecological model."

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Rising to the Challenge:
Presentations and Discussion of How Assistance Programs Can Contribute to Solutions

Pete Dalke, Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ)
     503-229-5588, dalke.pete@deq.state.or.us
Gil Hargreaves, Oregon DEQ
     503-378-8240, hargreaves.gil@deq.state.or.us, http://www.deq.state.or.us
Bruce Barbour, Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology)
     360-738-6249, brba461@ecy.wa.gov
Dave Misko, Ecology
     425-649-7014, dmis461@ecy.wa.gov
Hugh O’Neill, Ecology
     360-407-6354, hone461@ecy.wa.gov, http://www.wa.gov/ecology

Bruce Barbour: Ecology is facilitating four teams that are addressing water quality issues in the Lake Whatcom watershed. Two of the teams are working on changing behaviors and community culture for both business and residential audiences through the use of pollution prevention booklets and pledge cards. The project includes sampling water quality, sediments and tissues of aquatic creatures in streams draining to the lake to determine assistance impacts.

Pete Dalke: In Oregon, the state is coordinating an assistance initiative for small communities that have limited resources for complying with environmental mandates. For assistance to be effective, the help of local organizations and agencies must be enlisted.

Gil Hargreaves: Oregon DEQ has shown that it is possible to measure the impacts of assistance projects. An example was the A-3 channel project in the Eugene area. Programs should try out measuring systems, learn from the results, and continue to improve. Programs must show they make a difference if they are to continue in existence.

Hugh O’Neill: Audience, content and location are guiding principles for assistance. Opportunities to broaden the impact of assistance include non-point source pollution prevention, energy and water efficiency, and worker and fire safety. Ecology’s Toxics Reduction Engineer Exchange (TREE) program shows that businesses must be convinced that P2 approaches will work. Case studies are not enough. (See http://www.pprc.org/pprc/pubs/newslets/news0598.html#approach for more information about TREE.)

To set technical assistance into a biological perspective, environmental impact on ecosystems is the product of population, consumption and technology. Technical assistance that increases technological efficiency reduces the scale of the impact.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Upcoming EPA Headquarters Priorities

Carolyn Gangmark, EPA Region 10 – 206-553-4072
     gangmark.carolyn@epa.gov, http://www.epa.gov/region10
Lynn Vendinello, EPA Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) – 202-564-7066
     vendinello.lynn@epa.gov, http:es.epa.gov/oeca/index.html

Carolyn Gangmark: Guidelines for the Pollution Prevention Incentives for States grant program were issued in mid-October. Other grant programs coming up are Sustainability Challenge and community-based environmental protection.

Lynn Vendinello: EPA sees its compliance assistance role as a wholesaler of information to the states and being a clearinghouse. The compliance assistance tool box includes on-line assistance centers, guides to regulations, self-assessment tools, training, and incentives. OECA is developing measurement tools to document results achieved.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Making Voluntary Approaches Effective for ESA Compliance

Dave Galvin, King County Local Hazardous Waste Management Program (LHWMP) – 206-689-3050
     dave.galvin@metrokc.gov, http://www.metrokc.gov/hazwaste
Leslie Romer, Ecology – 360-407-6998
     lrom461@ecy.wa.gov, http:www.wa.gov:80/ECOLOGY/eils/pubs/salm_ind/sbp1.pdf
Mary Abrams, Portland Bureau of Environmental Services – 503-823-7032
     marya@bes.ci.portland.or.us, http://www.europa.com/environmentalservices
David McDonald, Seattle Public Utilities Resource Conservation Office
     206-684-7650, david.mcdonald@ci.seattle.wa.us
      http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/util/RESCONS/tour/water-q/pipe-crk/pipe-crk.htm

Dave Galvin: The causes of salmon’s decline are commonly described as the "4 H’s" –hydro, habitat, harvest, and hatcheries. (A summary of the 4 H’s is available at http://www.europa.com/environmentalservices/esa/threat.htm.)

The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) will require that salmon recovery plans have substance, assurance of action and results, and adaptability. Endangered species listings are an opportunity for assistance programs to focus their work, by providing a context and a hook for working with business.

Leslie Romer: An interagency work group has developed a list of 15 regional salmon habitat indicators that can be used to collect data, set priorities, measure program effectiveness, and track habitat condition. The indicators cover fish abundance, water quality, water quantity, land use and physical habitat.

Mary Abrams: Salmon recovery is an opportunity for assistance providers to work with regulators and businesses, but there will be a great deal of oversight. Recovery efforts, including voluntary programs, must show they will get results. Monitoring and measurement are essential. Complaints about measurement requirements are misguided. The goal of assistance programs is to protect public health and the environment.

David McDonald: Lessons learned in the Pipers Creek watershed management plan were: 1) Give communities ownership of the plan, 2) Focus on practical, doable actions, 3) Secure top-level commitment from implementing agencies, 4) Choose indicators strategically to provide useful information without creating an excessive data-gathering burden, 5) Build a solid baseline of information, and 6) Use surveys to measure behavior change. An effective strategy is to combine enforcement with education.

Ray Carveth: Assistance programs must learn how to communicate with their target audiences, by speaking their language and using anecdotes when appropriate. Leverage other resources, such as property managers or lenders, to achieve compliance.

Other Discussion: One concern was tying the future of programs to salmon. What if the salmon don’t recover? Abrams cautioned against making fish returns the sole criterion of success, in view of the fact that habitat damage is not the only cause of salmon’s decline. Galvin said strong leadership will be necessary to ensure that all of the 4 H’s are addressed together.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Motivating Business: Tips and Tools

David Kunz, Oregon DEQ – 503-229-6237
     kunz.david@deq.state.or.us
Kevin Masterson, Oregon DEQ – 503-229-5615
     masterson.kevin@deq.state.or.us, http://www.deq.state.or.us
David Wigglesworth, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) – 907-269-7582
     dwiggles@envircon.state.ak.us, http://www.state.ak.us/local/akpages/ENV.CONSERV
John Bernardo, Idaho Division of Environmental Quality (DEQ) – 208-373-0114
     jbernard@deq.state.id.us

David Kunz: Oregon is trying a variety of approaches to facilitate adoption of P2, including multi-media permitting, technical and compliance assistance, training, amnesties, and supplemental environmental projects (SEPs).

Kevin Masterson: The Eco-Logical Business recognition program is being piloted with auto service companies, with the cooperation of other agencies and trade associations. The program covers all media. Lessons learned include: 1) Working with all media and with other agencies is the most effective approach, 2) Working with trade associations on marketing gets the word out effectively, and 3) Staff coordination and seed money are needed at the beginning. Problem areas include slow decision-making, inequitable allocation of workload, and differences over measurement tools.

David Wigglesworth: Through the Environmental Leadership program, Alaska DEC is exploring incentives to encourage businesses to adopt P2. Possible drivers include reduced oversight and costs. A study of businesses participating in the Green Star recognition program found that drivers for taking part included cost reductions and better public relations.

John Bernardo: The P2 community must choose its language carefully in marketing. The word "pollution" may draw negative reactions. "Business improvement" might be a better description of P2 technical assistance.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Discussion: Wish List

Participants were asked what is number one on their wish list, besides more funding. Answers included more business awareness of assistance resources, improved marketing, better understanding of business needs, a stronger link between P2 and fish habitat protection, better working relationships among agencies, and improved databases and resource directories.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Understanding Assistance Services in the Northwest

Madeline Sten, Cathy Buller, PPRC – 206-352-2050, msten@pprc.org, cbuller@pprc.org
Lane Nothman, Ross & Associates – 206-447-1805, lane.nothman@ross-assoc.com

Participants engaged in a "mind-mapping" exercise to gather information on assistance services available in the Northwest. Information gathered in the session will be used to compile an assistance resources directory, to be made available at a later date.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Measuring Results: Current and Emerging Approaches

Tom Neltner, Indiana Department of Environmental Management – 317-232-8172
     tnelt@opn.dem.state.in.us, http://www.state.in.us/idem/oppta/index.html
Mike Vogel, Peaks to Prairies P2 Information Center – 406-994-3451
     acxmv@trex.oscs.montana.edu, http://www.montana.edu/wwwpeaks
Dennis Pearson, Seattle City Light – 206-684-3254
     dennis.pearson@ci.seattle.wa.us, http://www.ci.seattle.wa.us/light/conserve/business/cv5_esp.htm

Tom Neltner: Measurement provides three benefits: 1) Credibility with EPA and other agencies, 2) Engaging audiences with concrete information, and 3) Focusing efforts on specific goals.

Issues that complicate measurement are the lack of a universally agreed upon definition of P2, a perception that P2 is separate from enforcement, and fears that EPA will adopt a definition of measurement that will be cast in stone.

Indiana has set numerical P2 goals. An example is reducing TRI emissions. Programs should figure out measurement systems that work, and don’t worry that numbers may not be precisely accurate. Shades of grey are OK.

Mike Vogel: Keep measurement systems simple, know why programs are being evaluated, understand what needs to be measured, know who your audience is, and strive for impact.

Dennis Pearson: When marketing energy efficiency projects, it pays to appeal to business concerns about non-energy benefits, such as productivity, cost reduction, and product quality. Tips include gaining the cooperation of engineering, operations and data managers; being sensitive to company work priorities; understanding your client’s needs; and avoiding both excessive and insufficient data collection.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Information Resources

Lynn Vendinello, OECA –202-564-7066
     vendinello.lynn@epa.gov, http:es.epa.gov/oeca/index.html
Chris Wiley, PPRC – 206-352-2050
     cwiley@pprc.org, http://www.pprc.org/pprc

Lynn Vendinello: Nine on-line compliance assistance centers are available to serve the needs of the auto repair, metal finishing, printed wiring board manufacturing, printing, transportation, agriculture, paint and coatings, chemical processing, and local government sectors. The centers offer guides to regulations, databases, chat rooms, and vendor directories. A link to all nine centers is available at http://www.epa.gov/oeca/mfcac.html.

Chris Wiley: The Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange is a network of nine regional P2 information centers that was established to give P2 assistance providers seamless access to high-quality, synthesized and peer-reviewed information. An important component of the project is standardizing information.

PPRC houses the center serving EPA Region 10. Resources available include:
     • Northwest assistance and policy contacts – http://www.pprc.org/pprc/contacts.html
     • Rapid Response Research Service – http://www.pprc.org/pprc/rapidres.html
     • Regional Highlights – http://www.pprc.org/pprc/regional/index.html
     • "Living" documents for fiberglass fabrication and paint manufacturing sectors – http://www.pprc.org/pprc/sbap/fiber/fiberTOC.html and http://www.pprc.org/pprc/sbap/paint/painttoc.html

Other good P2 search tools and information resources are:
     • AltaVista – http://www.altavista.digital.com
     • Copernic – http://www.copernic.com
     • Naval Facilities Engineering Service Center – http://enviro.nfesc.navy.mil/ps/index.html#Pollution Prevention
     • Defense Environmental Network and Information Exchange (DENIX) – http://denix.cecer.army.mil
     • VISITT Database – 800-245-4505
     • Resource conservation districts – http://www.nacdnet.org
     • Small Business Environmental Assistance – http://www.smallbiz-enviroweb.org

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 

Favorite Failures

Dave Waddell, LHWMP – 206-689-3069
     dave.waddell@metrokc.gov, http://www.metrokc.gov/hazwaste

The purpose of the session was to share revealing stories about technical assistance failures and lessons learned.

The Herbicide Can on the Ground: A field visit got off to a bad start when the company foreman reacted angrily to a question about a herbicide can on bare ground. Also, the company’s expectation of the visit was validation of its environmental management.
Lessons Learned: Companies cannot expect a guarantee of absolution from a field visit. Be clear on what you can and cannot do. Try not to lecture immediately about problem areas.

Airing Dirty Laundry in the Schoolhouse: Showing a school site assessment to top administrators nearly burned a relationship the Alaska DEC had developed with the school’s teachers and principal.
Lesson Learned: Understand how facilities make decisions and who needs to receive information about compliance issues.

Leaky Berms Around the Plating Tank: A permit manager told a metal finishing company to install a berm as secondary containment around a plating tank. The company installed an inadequate berm that leaked.
Lesson Learned: Point out potential problems if a company decides to handle an environmental management issue on the cheap. Be clear on what you ask for.

Money Didn’t Talk: A facility refused to install an efficient compressed air system regardless of the energy savings benefits. The assistance provider did not understand until later that installation would have disrupted production too much.
Lesson Learned: Listen to clients. Take their needs into consideration when marketing a project.

Other Discussion: What should assistance providers do if they notice potential violations of regulations administered by other agencies? Companies should be informed of the potential violations and a referral given. Another approach is to inform property managers or lenders, which usually results in quicker action to resolve a compliance problem than agency enforcement. The lesson for assistance providers it to be very clear on what they will and will not cover on field visits.

Additional details on this topic are available in the full meeting minutes.

 


Compiled by the Pacific Northwest Pollution Prevention Resource Center, 513 First Ave. West, Seattle, WA 98119
phone: 206-352-2050, fax: 206-352-2049, e-mail: office@pprc.org, WWW address: http://www.pprc.org/pprc/

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