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U.S. EPA Selects 23 New Members for Participation in National Environmental Performance Track Program; Hempstead Resource Recovery Facility Added

Release Date: 08/27/2002
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(#02083) NEW YORK, N. Y. -- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Christie Todd Whitman today announced the acceptance of 23 new members into the National Environmental Performance Track Program, including the Hempstead Resource Recovery Facility in Westbury, Long Island. Launched in June 2000, Performance Track now has 298 members who are recognized for their commitment to sound environmental management and continuous environmental improvement.

Performance Track is a voluntary partnership program that recognizes and encourages top environmental performers—public and private entities that voluntarily go beyond compliance with environmental regulations and commit to continuous environmental improvement. With their membership in Performance Track, members receive a range of incentives such as public recognition and low inspection priority to motivate further improvements.

All the new members have committed to reducing water use, solid waste, hazardous waste, and energy use over a three-year period. Current Performance Track facilities have already committed to lowering emissions of greenhouse gases by 26 million pounds; reducing emissions of volatile organic compounds by 98,000 pounds; reducing solid waste by 225 million pounds; and recycling or reusing more than five million pounds of materials.

“These are companies that have consistently done better than what is required of them by environmental regulations, said Jane Kenny, EPA Region 2 Administrator. “By voluntarily entering the Performance Track program, they commit to take their environmental performance to the next level, to become environmental leaders in the business world.”

The Hempstead Resource Recovery Facility, part of the American Ref-fuel family, is a 914,325 tons per year mass burn waste-to-energy facility in New York that combusts municipal solid waste for volume reduction and energy recovery. It generates electricity for approximately 65,000 homes on Long Island. The facility is equipped with state-of-the-art pollution control equipment and is in compliance with the municipal waste combustor (MACT) regulations. It was the first waste-to-energy plant in the country to be awarded the STAR designation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Voluntary Protection Program which recognizes facilities in all industries that maintain superior health and safety programs. Hempstead’s future performance commitments are to reduce raw water use by collecting and reusing its wastewater; reduce energy use through improving the efficiency of the facility’s steam generation cycle; and reduce hazardous waste through solvent reuse.

There are now a total of 14 Performance Track members in New York. In addition to the facility in Hempstead, these include: CPS Corporation (Dunkirk), Dresser-Rand (Wellsville), IBM Endicott (Endicott), IBM Hudson Valley Research Park (East Fishkill), IBM Poughkeepsie (Poughkeepsie), IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center (Yorktown Heights), Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics (Rochester), Lockheed Martin Naval Electronics & Surveillance Systems-Syracuse (Liverpool), Lockheed Martin Systems Integration (Owego), Loctite Electronics (Olean), Motts (Williamson), Nucor Steel Auburn, Inc. (Auburn), U.S. Department of Energy, West Valley Demonstration Project (West Valley).

EPA recently proposed a rule, published in the Federal Register on Aug. 13, that would reduce regulatory paperwork for Performance Track facilities. The Agency is proposing these changes in recognition of the high levels of performance these facilities have achieved and their continuing commitment to effective compliance, public outreach and environmental results. The proposed incentives would allow Performance Track facilities to store hazardous waste up to 180 days without obtaining a permit under the Resources Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) or having interim status, and simplify their reporting under the Maximum Available Control Technology provisions of the Clean Air Act (CAA). They would also allow reporting modifications for Performance Track facilities that are Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs) regulated by the Clean Water Act (CWA). Additionally, EPA is soliciting comments on a potential pilot project that would allow Performance Track facilities to consolidate reporting of data that are routinely submitted under the CAA, CWA, RCRA and Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-know Act into a single report.

For additional program information, including a complete listing of facilities in Performance Track and program criteria go to