Chapter 3 – How to Write a Pollution Prevention Plan

Step Five: Set Objectives for Implementation

Once the most promising option(s) has been chosen for implementation, objectives can be determined. Some broad objectives may have already been set during the formation of the pollution prevention team or policy development at the start of the planning process. In that case, this stage can consist of refining those objectives and developing the implementation schedule for the option(s) chosen. But whenever the objectives are set, they should have the following characteristics.

Critical Point!
Objectives are not legally binding or enforceable in any way by any organization. They should be considered as reasonable yet challenging goals that will make a process or company more profitable.

As detailed in Minnesota statute 115D.07(5), the objective(s) should be numeric. The 1990 Minnesota Toxic Pollution Prevention Act (TPPA) allows non-numeric objectives if it is not possible to establish numeric objectives. However, they must include a clearly stated list of actions designed to lead to establishing numeric objectives as soon as feasible. A good starting point for objective setting may be with the waste generation levels reported on the Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) Form R.

The objective should state the planned reduction in the TRI waste generation for the chemical involved. It should be clear how this reduction relates to the waste generated per unit of production. Remember that pollution prevention requires not the absolute reduction of waste generated, but the reduction of waste generated per unit of product.

The objective should state the schedule for the planned reductions. This may include the use of a timeline or other tool to clarify when implementation is planned. The objective should state how much the organization may benefit as a result of full implementation. This may include not only cost savings, but other tangible and intangible benefits upon reaching the objective. In addition, all assumptions and rationale used in setting these objectives should be documented in the plan.

Finally, list the options that were not chosen for implementation and provide a brief summary explaining why they were not selected.