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New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

Letter from David Gardiner to David Sterman

September 4, 1996

Mr. David Sterman
Deputy Commissioner
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
50 Wolf Road
Albany, NY 12233-7250

Dear Mr. Sterman:

Bill Muszynski, Deputy Administrator of EPA Region 2, has advised me of your concerns related to my July 29th letter to Mr. Norman H. Nosenchuck of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). In response to your concerns I would like to clarify that correspondence, which notified NYSDEC that we have accepted its proposal for participation in Project XL Selection with one condition. The condition specified that NYSDEC make a commitment "to also see that the savings accrued by participating public utilities be redirected into mutually agreed upon environmental tasks or projects that will benefit the environment."

The primary criterion for acceptance into the XL program is expected demonstration of superior environmental performance relative to what would have been achieved through otherwise applicable requirements. The benefits cited in your proposal include increased protection for both the public and the environment, as well as some reduction in air emissions as mobile transport of wastes is reduced. NYSDEC also notes in its proposal that project implementation will yield indirect environmental benefits: "More utility and regulatory agency resources are made available to address high priority environmental issues." EPA believes that the latter category is an important part of the overall superior environmental performance of this project.

However, it is not our expectation that all direct and indirect fiscal and resource savings resulting from project implementation would be tracked and reported. Nor is it our expectation that all such savings would necessarily be reinvested in the environment. We do expect that a final project agreement between us would seek to identify the environmental benefits of this project.

OPPE/ESSD/XL 9/4/96 EMcGovern 260-5352 3109-Al

I hope that this clarification eases your concerns. We look forward to working with you and others in NYSDEC to develop an innovative, flexible, and results-oriented approach to environmental protection. If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact me personally, or to contact Bill Muszynski at 212-637-3000. Once again, thank you for your continued interest in Project XL.


David Gardiner
Assistant Administrator

cc: Jeanne Fox, Administrator, EPA Region 2
Bill Muszynski, Deputy Administrator, Region 2
Sherry Bishko, EPA Region 2

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