Reinventing environmental regulation: Lessons from project XL

Alfred A. Marcus, Donald A. Geffen, Ken Sexton

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Project XL (eXcellence and Leadership) was the flagship effort by the Clinton administration for 'cleaner, cheaper, and smarter' regulation. Under Project XL, business promised better performance in exchange for a regulatory approach focused more on results than means, with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) measuring pollution reduction across rather than at individual sources within a facility. Reinventing Environmental Regulation is a compelling account of the breakdown in negotiations to implement Project XL at a tape manufacturing plant of 3M, a company widely recognized as environmentally progressive. Marcus, Geffen, and Sexton discuss the conflicting goals of participants, the influences of personality and organizational culture, and complications caused by changes in 3M's external business environment. They compare the 3M case with EPA negotiations involving Intel, Merck, and Weyerhaeuser, finding similarly contentious, though less fatal disagreements about the meaning of 'superior environmental performance.' In common with other recent proposals, Project XL emphasized cooperative, flexible regulatory approaches. Reinventing Environmental Regulation demonstrates the difficulty of putting these appealing ideas into practice, while offering encouragement for continued innovations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages256
ISBN (Electronic)9781936331314
ISBN (Print)9781891853081
StatePublished - Sep 30 2010

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2002 Resources for the Future. All right reserved.


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