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What is Project XL?

Project XL is coordinated by EPA's Office of Policy, Economics, and Innovation. Project XL, which stands for "eXcellence and Leadership," was a national pilot program that allowed state and local governments, businesses and federal facilities to develop with EPA innovative strategies to test better or more cost-effective ways of achieving environmental and public health protection. In exchange, EPA issued regulatory, program, policy, or procedural flexibilities to conduct the experiment. Under Project XL private businesses, federal facilities, business sectors and state and local governments are conducting experiments that address the eight Project XL selection criteria:

  1. produce superior environmental results beyond those that would have been achieved under current and reasonably anticipated future regulations or policies;
  2. produce benefits such as cost savings, paperwork reduction, regulatory flexibility or other types of flexibility that serve as an incentive to both project sponsors and regulators;
  3. supported by stakeholders;
  4. achieve innovation/pollution prevention;
  5. produce lessons or data that are transferable to other facilities;
  6. demonstrate feasibility;
  7. establish accountability through agreed upon methods of monitoring, reporting, and evaluations; and
  8. avoid shifting the risk burden, i.e., do not create worker safety or environmental justice problems as a result of the experiment.

Additionally, if the applicant was a Project XL for Communities it was required to develop strategies that.

  1. present economic opportunity; and
  2. incorporate community planning.

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