Pollution Prevention

  • What is it?

    Pollution prevention (P2) is a comprehensive initiative to reduce and prevent pollution at the source. It focuses on conservation of resources, replacement of hazardous materials with less hazardous materials, waste reduction, recycling, and other preventive means to successfully and cost effectively avoid, prevent, or reduce the generation of pollutants.

  • What has the Army done?

    USAEC's role in helping achieve environmental compliance for the Army through the application of P2 includes:

    • Integrating P2 into all compliance programs (air management, drinking water management, EPCRA implementation, hazardous waste management, integrated solid waste management, storage tank and spill management, and toxics management) and compliance auditing
    • Working with the Army Environmental Division of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management Installation Services Directorate (ISE), Environmental Division of the Installation Management Command (IMCOM) G4-Logicstics and Public Works, Army Materiel Command (AMC), and Army National Guard (ARNG) to develop compliance and P2 strategies Integrating P2 into installation EMS planning and execution
    • Documenting and evaluating performance of P2 initiatives by collecting and sharing success stories and lessons learned
    • Tracking the Army's progress in meeting DoD and Army environmental goals
    • Reviewing all P2-related presidential orders and local, state and federal requirements
    • Preparing programmatic and media-specific guidance documents, including P2 options
    • Developing tools to assist installations in complying with P2 requirements
    • Supporting installations when requested
    • Maintaining contact with the EPA to stay abreast of current and future initiatives
    • Representing the Army on DoD committees, along with ISE

  • Why is this important?

    The Army P2 program has three major impacts on the Army. First, it helps installations reduce their environmental compliance burden by minimizing the applicability of requirements imposed by environmental laws and regulations. Second, successful P2 projects help reduce operational costs. Third, the P2 program is fundamental in reducing waste and the generation of pollution. The Army P2 program focuses on implementing changes in chemicals, equipment, and processes in order to achieve a meaningful cost-effective reduction in the generation of pollution without adversely impacting mission readiness.


    P2 also plays an essential role in Army efforts to implement Environmental Management System (EMS) and installation sustainability programs. In EMS, P2 efforts are critical in addressing the installation's significant aspects and their impacts. In sustainability, P2 provides essential tools to help installations meet their long-term goals. Some typical P2 projects include:

    • Battery recycling
    • Paint stripping and coating removal
    • Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) reporting
    • Fluorescent light recycling
    • Fuel filter and reuse
    • Green Procurement
    • Natural gas conversion of boilers
    • Recycling non-hazardous waste
    • Solvent recycling
    • Waste reduction
    • Weapons cleaning systems

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