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Office of Strategic Environmental Management

Why EMS in Permitting and Regulatory Programs?

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


EPA believes that properly implemented EMS can help facilities achieve significantly improved environmental results and other positive benefits. As such, EPA has encouraged the use of EMS, and is currently exploring whether and how EMS can be used in permitting and regulatory programs. A history of events and interest has led to EPA's current exploration of the use of EMS in the regulatory structure.

  • EPA's Position Statement on EMS
    On May 15, 2002, EPA issued a Position Statement on EMS. EPA's EMS Position Statement encourages the widespread use of EMS with particular emphasis on adoption of EMS to achieve improved environmental performance and compliance, pollution prevention through source reduction, and continual improvement. The EMS Position Statement also recognizes that EMS can complement regulatory programs and can indicate opportunities to streamline regulations.
  • EPA's Own EMS Policy
    On May 17, 2002, EPA released its own EMS Implementation Policy. EPA's EMS policy encourages regulated entities to use effective EMS and commits EPA to implement EMS within the agency.
  • EMS in Permitting and Regulatory Programs
    Since May 2002, EPA and our state partners have implemented and expanded a variety of voluntary programs that encourage the use of EMS. States and other stakeholders continue to show increasing interest in using EMS in permitting programs and rules, and some states have already initiated such programs.
  • EPA's Strategy for Determining the Role of EMS in Regulatory Programs
    To respond to continued agency and stakeholder interest in the potential use of EMS in regulatory programs, EPA developed a Strategy for Determining the Role of Environmental Management Systems in Regulatory Programs. The EMS Strategy was released on April 12, 2004. It explains the issues and considerations of interest to EPA as we explore the use of EMS in regulatory programs. It also encourages thoughtful, carefully designed EMS experimentation to determine how EMS can be used in permitting and regulatory programs.

EMS in Permitting | Why Permitting EMS? | EMS Strategy | Initiatives | International Resources | Evaluation Tools | Resources

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