On Tuesday, AGC Chief Executive Officer Stephen E. Sandherr and Tom Couling (Zachry Constr), the chair of AGC’s environmental forum, joined senior officials at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the launch of the agency’s Smart Sectors program. EPA invited AGC to partner on an aggressive effort to eliminate or improve harmful rules that have failed to deliver results and stifled economic growth.
“Finding a way to combine a deep knowledge of how to protect the environment with an understanding of how construction firms operate is the most effective way to craft programs and policies that deliver significant environmental protections to commercial construction sites,” said Sandherr. “The Administrator clearly understands that firms will be able to do more to protect the environment if the regulations they must follow are crafted with an understanding of how employers operate.”
The Smart Sectors program is focused on better-informed rulemaking, reduced burden and increased transparency about environmental performance. (See 82 Federal Register 44783 and 82 FR 45586.) Through this new partnership, AGC will have a direct point-of-contact in EPA’s Office of Policy and an opportunity to shape the outcomes on issues on the agency’s “to do list” as outlined in the Regulatory Agenda.
AGC has been calling for EPA to revive the Bush Administration’s Sector Strategies program, through which AGC worked collaboratively with the agency to develop numerous industry-specific compliance tools including the online Construction Industry Compliance Assistance Center and a toolkit for developing an environmental management system. In fact, this non-partisan program, temporarily ended by the Obama Administration, dates all the way back to the Clinton Administration.