Printers' National Environmental Assistance Center



Virtual Printing Plants

Virtual Printing Plants Home

Virtual Flexo Plant

Virtual Litho Plant

Virtual Digital Plant - Coming Soon

Virtual Gravure Plant - Coming Soon

Vendors & Suppliers

Fact Sheets & Case Studies

Listservs & Archives

Contacts & Links


Compliance Info

Print Process Descriptions


Training Home





Screen Printing


Other Sources of Printing Related Environmental Training


Calendars of Events



What is PNEAC?

Federal and Regional Environmental Programs

Index of State Energy Policies

Learn how states are promoting energy efficiency through laws and regulations at the Index of State Energy Policies.

Plug-In to eCycling (Recycling Consumer Electronics)

Electronic devices are everywhere. Since newer electronics are constantly replacing older outmoded devices, the U.S. EPA has created an online resource, Plug-In to eCycling. This campaign is working to increase the number of electronic devices reused and recycled, rather than having them disposed of in an inappropriate manner.

P4 (Pollution Prevention in Permitting Projects) Pilot

In response to a request from the Printing Industries of America Inc., Graphic Arts Technical Foundation, Screenprinting & Graphic Imaging Association International, and Flexible Packaging Association, EPA and the printing industry are actively considering a two phased project which will define efficient ways to meet existing air requirements and to provide sufficient operational flexibility for the printing industry to respond quickly to the demands of an increasingly global marketplace.

The first phase would consist of two meetings where the printing industry would outline the nature of its flexibility and permitting needs. The second phase would rely upon one or more “pollution prevention in permitting projects” (P4) partnership. Each partnership would involve a permitting authority, printing operator, and EPA. This phase for each such partnership would involve a permit pilot project that addresses on a source-specific basis a significant number of the permitting concerns identified in the first phase. The expected results would include a series of example permit terms that effectively address many of the concern identified in phase I and a rationale for developing such terms.



The goal of PrintSTEP (Printers' Simplified Total Environmental Partnership) is helping the printing industry and the public achieve cleaner, cheaper, and smarter environmental protection through the creation of a simpler regulatory "framework." PrintSTEP does not change the existing environmental emissions or release standards for the printing industry. Instead, it changes the process of implementing those standards. PrintSTEP should improve environmental performance, be more efficient, and make the regulatory process easier. This new approach encourages all stakeholders in the printing industry to become involved and contribute positively. Pilot projects with extensive evaluation (including gathering baseline information at the initiation of the pilot projects) will be the primary means of determining the effectiveness of PrintSTEP.

The National Environmental Performance Track

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) National Environmental Performance Track is designed to reward and motivate top environmental performers. Performance Track offers recognition, access to useful networks, and eligibility for various regulatory program incentives to facilities that meet the entry criteria. To participate in Performance Track, your facility must demonstrate past environmental achievements, have implemented an environmental management system, and have a record of sustained compliance. You must also make commitments to future environmental improvements and communicating with the community.

For more information about Performance Track, visit the web site at , call 1-888-339-PTRK, or e-mail

DfE: Design for the Environment

Building on the "design for the environment" concept pioneered by industry, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) Design for the Environment (DfE) Program helps businesses incorporate environmental considerations into the design and redesign of products, processes, and technical and management systems. Initiated by EPA’s Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT) in 1992, DfE forms voluntary partnerships with industry, universities, research institutions, public interest groups, and other government agencies.

Project partners’ activities include broad institutional efforts aimed at changing general business practices, as well as cooperative projects with trade associations and businesses in specific industries. The DfE Program ensures that the information developed through these voluntary efforts reaches the people who make decisions--from managers to industrial design engineers to materials specifiers and buyers. This information dissemination promotes the incorporation of environmental considerations into the traditional business decision-making process.

Great Printers Project

2001 Update

The project works through a team made up of Great Lakes regulatory and economic development agencies, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), state and federal technical assistance providers, printers, suppliers and customers, and members of labor and environmental groups. This follows the lead of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in defining "pollution prevention" as essentially equal to "source reduction" as defined in the Pollution Prevention Act of 1990.


The primary objective of the Great Printers Project is to establish pollution prevention as standard business practice in the printing industry. This will require efforts not only on the part of the printers, but also by all who supply them with materials, purchase their products, and regulate their operations. Toward this end, the Great Printers Project recommends roles to be played by:

  • printers,
  • print buyers,
  • print suppliers and distributors,
  • government regulators, and
  • government and private assistance organizations.

The project partners assume that each group will play its part, and that all of the project recommendations will be instituted. To find out how to become designated as a Great Printer or get assistance with completing the steps to becoming a designated Great Printer contact your state partners.

Lists of Great Printers

More Information

Minnesota Environmental Initiative's 
"Print Buyer Guidelines"

Environmental Considerations for the Print Buyer: A step-by-step guide on how to minimize the environmental impacts of your printed materials while accounting for cost, quality, and design.

Pollution Prevention in Printing (P2PRINT)

A barrier to identifying and implementing P2 projects is the lack of expedient access to reliable and up-to-date P2 information. In the printing industry, this problem is compounded by the fact that most print shops are small and not able to dedicate a staff person to environmental issues.

In answer to this problem, Northeast Waste Management Officials' Association's (NEWMOA) P2PRINT project is piloting innovative electronic methods for providing P2 information to the printing industry. The project is funded by the US Environmental Protection Agency under the Environmental Technology Initiative program. The project is specifically focused on printers in the Northeast (Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont), but is available and contains information relevant to other printers as well.

Specific tasks in the P2PRINT project include:

Developing a comprehensive database of pollution prevention information for printers, creating a centralized location for information developed specifically for the printing industry. Printers and technical assistance programs will use this information to identify proven P2 techniques.

Creating an E-mail based forum that will link printing companies with technical experts, vendors, trade associations, and regulatory programs. A company looking for technical information or expertise could post a question on the forum providing details of their situation. Those subscribers that know a solution to the question or problem could post their response, enabling all subscribers to follow the dialogue.

Creating a CD-ROM system that will enable printers to answer specific questions related to their unique situation by providing a user-friendly interface and format for locating pollution prevention information. This system will include: case studies of companies that have successfully implemented P2 technologies; specific alternative technologies; environmental regulatory requirements pertaining to the printing industry; comprehensive list of relevant documents on P2 for printing; and vendors of pollution prevention equipment.

For more information contact:

129 Portland Street, Suite 601
Boston, MA 02114
Voice phone: (617) 367-8558 x304
Fax: (617) 367-0449
©PNEAC | Disclaimer / Copyright Info | Email the PNEAC Webmaster

Home | Search | What is PNEAC? | Contact Us

VPP | Vendors & Suppliers | Fact Sheets & Case Studies | Listservs & Archives | National Contacts & Links | Programs | Compliance Information
Print Processes & Descriptions | Training | Calendar of Events | Feedback