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United States Environmental Protection Agency
Voluntary Programs
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Through Partners for the Environment, some 11,000 businesses are working closely with EPA to achieve verifiable upgrades in the environment and cut their costs along the way. These partners set voluntary pollution-management goals--conserving water and energy, minimizing greenhouse gases, slashing toxic emissions, re-using solid waste, controlling indoor air pollution, and getting a handle on pesticide risks. In return EPA provides incentives like vital public recognition and access to emerging information. EPA runs more than 40 such voluntary programs out of its headquarters and regional offices, ones like ENERGY STAR, Performance Track, WasteWise, Design for the Environment, Climate Leaders and others--all highly successful, with the promise of continuing advances in the months and years ahead.

Highlighted below are several voluntary programs.

  • Best Workplaces for Commuters (formerly Commuter Choice Leadership Initiative)
    Best Workplaces for Commuters is a joint EPA and U.S. Department of Transportation recognition and partnership program that encourages employers to offer their employees an outstanding level of commuter benefits such as tax-free transit passes, vanpool benefits, or telecommuting.
  • Clean School Bus USA
    EPA's Clean School Bus USA program brings together partners from business, education, transportation, and public health organizations to work toward eliminating unnecessary public school bus idling; retrofitting buses with better emission control technologies; and replacing the oldest buses in the fleet with new, less polluting buses.
  • Climate Leaders
    Climate Leaders is a new voluntary EPA industry-government partnership that encourages companies to develop long-term comprehensive climate change strategies. Partners set a corporate-wide greenhouse gas emission reduction goal and inventory their emissions to measure progress.
  • Design for the Environment
    The Design for the Environment program helps businesses incorporate environmental considerations into the design of products by integrating cleaner, cheaper, and smarter solutions into everyday business practices.
  • Diesel Retrofit
    This program addresses pollution from diesel construction equipment and heavy-duty vehicles that are currently on the road today. The Program is building a market for clean diesel engines by working with state, local and industry partners to create demonstration projects around the country.
    ENERGY STAR provides businesses and consumers with energy efficient solutions that save money while protecting the environment for future generations. By choosing ENERGY STAR in our homes and places of employment, every person can help protect the environment.
  • National Environmental Performance Track
    EPA's most comprehensive partnership program is the first multi-media partnership program encouraging companies to continuously reduce their facilities' total effect on the environment. The program includes over 300 private and public facilities, all of which have achieved environmental results that go beyond compliance with applicable legal and regulatory standards.
  • Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP)
    The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program is a voluntary partnership between EPA and pesticide users developed to reduce the health and environmental risks associated with pesticide use, and to implement pollution prevention strategies.
  • SmartWay Transport
    EPA created SmartWay Transport, a partnership with leading freight-haulers, retailers and manufacturers, to reduce: fuel consumption from the transportation sector in the United States; emissions affecting human health, especially in densely populated urban areas; and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • SunWise School Program
    The SunWise School Program is an environmental and health education program that aims to teach children and their caregivers how to protect themselves from overexposure to the sun. Through the use of classroom-based, school-based, and community-based components, SunWise seeks to develop sustained sun-safe behaviors in schoolchildren.
  • WasteWise
    WasteWise encourages business, government, and institutional partners to reduce municipal solid waste through waste prevention, recycling, and buying/manufacturing products with recycled content, benefitting their bottom lines and the environment.
  • Water Alliances for Voluntary Efficiency (WAVE)
    EPA's Water Alliances for Voluntary Efficiency (WAVE) program helps businesses reduce water use and water-related energy use. WAVE's efforts focus on improving water efficiency in the lodging industry, office buildings and educational institutions.

For a complete list of programs, visit EPA's Partners for the Environment Web site


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