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Multi-State Auto Body ERP in EPA Region 5

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.


Auto Body Worker Applying Paint to a Car.

Auto Body Worker Applying Paint to a Car.

With funding from EPA's State Innovation Grants program, Wisconsin is leading five other Midwestern states in a collaborative Environmental Results Program (ERP) with EPA Region 5. The project is intended to measure and improve the environmental performance of thousands of auto body shops in urban areas in the Region. These shops, and tens of thousands of others nationwide, must implement new EPA regulations (PDF) (32 pp, 229K, About PDF) by 2011. The regulations are intended to reduce emissions of air toxics, a particularly important concern in urban areas, where concentrations of air toxics are often higher.

This project serves as an important test case for cost-effectively assessing and influencing the performance of very large populations of facilities. By working together, the states aim to defray some of the substantial, up-front costs of ERP implementation. For instance, because of the economies of scale associated with statistics (PDF) (40 pp, 1179K, About PDF), the overall number of random site visits required for this large population of auto body shops will be little more than that required for a small population. Further, the number of random site visits conducted by each state will be largely proportional to each state's share of the overall population of urban facilities. For each state, these two factors work together to substantially reduce the number of site visits that would otherwise be required to implement similar, but single-state, ERPs.

This ERP will also be relying, in part, on the work of the Common Measures Project, a multi-state effort that developed a core set of indicators for measuring the performance of auto body shops. The Common Measures Project demonstrated the value of using a set of common indicators to compare group performance across several states, whereas this auto body ERP is expected to demonstrate the value of common indicators in developing an accurate estimate of overall performance for a multi-state population of facilities.

For more information on this multi-state ERP, please visit the project website (offline as of 09-04-12) hosted by the Wisconsin Department of Commerce, which is coordinating the effort, or EPA's State Innovation Grants webpage for the project.

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