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If your facility looks for opportunities to continuously improve, reduce waste and improve efficiency, reducing your footprint on Indiana's environment, then you may be an Environmental Steward.
Don't miss your opportunity for reduced recordkeeping and reporting, monitoring, inspections, and expedited and flexible permits!
Watch Gerry Dick of Inside Indiana Business as he speaks with Jean-Francois Brossoit, Plant Manager, Carrier Corporation; Tom Easterday, Senior Vice President, Subaru of Indiana Automotive; and Sam George, Vice President of Environmental Compliance, American Commercial Lines, about being members of the Indiana Environmental Stewardship Program.
ESP is a voluntary, performance based leadership program designed to recognize and reward Indiana regulated entities for going above and beyond current environmental regulations. In return for their exemplary environmental performance, these establishments will receive program incentives including regulatory flexibility, public recognition, and networking opportunities.
ESP focuses on improving Indiana's environment and business climate through innovation and efficient resource allocation. Participating organizations achieve environmental objectives through creating and implementing an environmental management system (EMS). Together, the EMS and the steward's commitment to continual environmental improvement will increase their efficiency, decrease environmental impacts, and may save the business time, money, and resources. Regulatory flexibility incentives earned by members were designed to provide business value, reduce regulatory oversight, allow a shift in resources from compliance driven to achieving results, and provide the member with increased operational flexibility.
Any regulated entity in Indiana may apply regardless of type, size, or complexity. To qualify for Indiana's Environmental Stewardship Program, applicants must demonstrate that they have:
A complete description of eligibility requirements [PDF] is available.
There are many benefits and incentives for members including regulatory flexibility, recognition, and networking opportunities. Some of the specific incentives include:
A complete listing of incentives is available on the internet.
Applications for ESP are accepted year-round. Current members who complete their third year may renew when they submit their Annual Performance Report in April of their third year.
As a component of membership in the Environmental Stewardship Program, each member facility completes an ESP Annual Performance Report (available on the IDEM Forms page) in which it demonstrates to IDEM and the public its environmental accomplishments over the year, its continued high level of environmental performance, and its maintenance of the Environmental Stewardship Program membership criteria. The ESP Annual Performance Report must be submitted to IDEM by April 1st for each calendar year in which the entity has been a member for at least three (3) full months. The Annual Performance Report includes the following:
Please do not include any confidential business information in your ESP Annual Performance Report. Please keep in mind that IDEM makes the report publicly available, including posting all portions of your report on the Environmental Stewardship Program web site.
Each Environmental Stewardship Program member must normalize the data reported on the ESP Annual Performance Report. Normalization is the process of adjusting environmental performance measurements to account for increases or decreases in production over time. Normalization is important because it recognizes that facilities can become more environmentally efficient, even if total production increases. Conversely, if production declines, normalization separates out the effects of declining production from any gains in environmental efficiency.
Facilities should choose a basis of normalization that directly demonstrates changes in the activity level or output of the facility. The basis of normalization should describe both WHAT is being produced and HOW production is measured. The basis of normalization should not change from year to year, and in most cases the same basis of normalization should be used for all Environmental Stewardship Program goals. It is best to choose a basis of normalization that is measured in physical quantities using production quantities (e.g., pounds) as opposed to dollar values. For example, for an electroplating facility, an appropriate basis of normalization could be "tons of material electroplated." For a car manufacturer, an appropriate basis of normalization could be "number of cars produced."
Once a member facility submits an ESP Annual Performance Report, IDEM staff will review the report. A facility may be contacted if IDEM identifies any significant problems. It will take IDEM approximately 30-60 days to review and accept the ESP Annual Performance Reports.
During 2012, Environmental Stewardship Program members made the following achievements:
The table lists all of the reductions achieved by Environmental Stewardship Program members during 2012 by each environmental category:
|Category||Calendar Year 2012|
|Material procurement (reduced):||25,745 pounds|
|Water use (reduced):||60,799,395 gallons|
|Energy use (reduced):||31,771,728 kilowatt hours
79,614 million British Thermal Units
|Land and habitat conservation:||Restored 120 acres and planted 16,893 trees|
|Air emissions (reduced):||Volatile organic compound emissions by 27,137 pounds|
Greenhouse gas emissions by 5,316,200 pounds
|Non-Hazardous Waste (reduced):||2,755,535 pounds|
Facilities are asked to reapply for their Environmental Stewardship Program membership after each three (3) year membership term to ensure the facility continues to meet stringent membership requirements. To apply for an additional three (3) year membership term, current members must check the appropriate box in Section A of their third ESP Annual Performance Report and submit the full report with proof of the independent assessment to the ESP manager by the April 1st deadline.
Facilities must have had an independent assessment of their environmental management system completed within the past thirty-six (36) months to renew membership. An independent assessment is one that is performed by someone who is neither directly employed by your facility nor someone who has played a substantive role in developing your environmental management system.
Applicants and renewing members can use the ISO 14001:2004 certification audit, Responsible Care EMS or 14001 audits, the ESP Independent Assessment Protocol, or some other independent assessment, like a corporate audit, with approval from IDEM. Guidelines for these assessments are set out in the ESP Eligibility Requirements [PDF], including the qualifications for the individual conducting the independent assessment.
IDEM staff cannot recommend auditors to perform the independent environmental management system assessment; however, a list of ISO 14001:2004 Environmental Management System Lead Auditors that are qualified to perform independent facility assessments is available online. Be sure to search the certification scheme criteria using the “competency-based environmental auditor” and the “qualification-based environmental auditor.”
The process for renewing ESP membership is the same as the initial ESP application process. Starting April 1 of each year, IDEM has 90-days to internally review the ESP renewals (i.e., Annual Performance Report and third-party EMS assessment) for those facilities seeking to renew ESP membership. This 90-day internal review period includes reviewing the Annual Performance Reports and EMS assessments, obtaining an internal compliance history report from all IDEM program offices and, possibly, a site visit conducted by OPPTA staff. IDEM management will review the compliance report, EMS assessment results, and each facility's achievements during their previous membership term. Each facility’s independent EMS assessment documents are deliberative information and will not be made public.
Facilities continuing to meet ESP program requirements will be notified of their membership renewal by the ESP program manager and will be provided with a new ESP certificate citing the newest membership term. Membership renewal notifications will be provided by the end of June each year assuming all renewing facility’s submit their ESP Annual Performance Report and EMS assessment by the April 1 deadline.
For more information or if you have questions, please contact the Indiana Department of Environmental Management at (800) 988-7901 or via email at "ESP at idem.in.gov".