Small Business Suppliers – Environmental Stewardship From the Bottom Up

Frisch, Elizabeth (Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission)

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As professionals involved in the semiconductor industry, we spend a significant amount of resources maintaining and continually improving environmental compliance at our facilities. Sometimes, we miss a very important opportunity to ensure that many of the industries that support our facilities from drycleaners to autobody repair shops, print shops, and metal finishing facilities maintain the same standards. Most small businesses that support this industry do not have the resources or expertise to ensure that they are also in compliance with the multitude of regulations that apply to them. As a result, they end up in enforcement when stewardship by their customers could have ensured they also maintained compliance. The TNRCC Small Business and Local Government Assistance Section has developed a free, confidential compliance assistance program that focuses on small businesses that support the larger industries including printers, surface coaters, autobody & autorepair, metal platers & finishers, thermoset resin, dry cleaners, landscapers, and other related industries. The section has created multimedia compliance checklists for these industries which lets them be aware in “plain language” what their requirements are and stay out of enforcement. In addition, site visits are completed to small businesses that gives them a free and confidential assessment of their compliance status without fear of enforcement as a result of the visit. This presentation will discuss how this program was established, review the compliance assessment checklists, and outline typical environmental issues faced by these suppliers. In addition, it will provide the framework for using these tools to ensure that your suppliers are also in compliance and have the resources to maintain the same standards as your facilities.

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