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Release Date: 09/22/1999
Contact Information: Amy Miller, EPA Press Office (617-918-1042)

BOSTON - Two companies in Maine were among 15 in New England recognized today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for their demonstrated commitment to environmental leadership. BOC Gases of Kittery and International Paper Company's Androscoggin Mill of Jay were recognized as part of EPA-New England's StarTrack program, which began in 1996 as a way to encourage facilities to become environmentally efficient while making better use of government resources.

The StarTrack program works by rewarding those facilities that agree to complete three steps aimed at protecting the environment. The facilities agree to: audit their environmental management and compliance performance each year; publish an environmental performance report each year and have audit results reviewed and certified by an independent third party every three years.

By using a third party auditor rather than an EPA inspector, the company helps make more efficient use of public and private resources. The yearly performance reports increase public understanding of a facility's environmental performance. In return for their efforts, StarTrack companies get such benefits as limited amnesty on penalties for violations and public recognition.

"Companies like BOC Gases and the International Paper Co. are doing exemplary work developing and monitoring their own environmental systems," said John P. DeVillars, EPA's New England Administrator, who spoke at today's event. "That's good for the environment and good for taxpayers because it allows EPA to channel its energies to other, less environmentally responsible companies."

    • BOC Gases, with about 25 employees, is a manufacturer and supplier of gases and gas-handling technology.
    • International Paper Company's Androscoggin Mill has about 1200 employees. The company manufactures high-grade paper and specialty paper products.
Companies outside Maine that were honored were:

In New Hampshire: Dexter Corporation/Polymer Systems in Seabrook; Dexter Corporation/Electronic Materials in Londonderry; Environmental Soil Management Inc. in Loudon; and the Sanders A. Lockheed Martin Co. with plants in Hudson, Nashua, Litchfield, Manchester and Merrimack;

In Massachusetts: EG&G Optelectronics in Salem; GAF Materials Corp. in Millis; Spalding Sports in Chicope; Texas Instruments/ Materials &Controls Group in Attleboro, and the US Coast Guard Air Station on Cape Cod.

In Connecticut: Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. in Stamford.; US Postal Service in Hartford and Unilever HPC in Clinton.

In Rhode Island: Toray Plastics in North Kingston.