IERG works and reports on a wide range of environmental matters which mostly fall into one of the categories below – the category descriptions provide only a snapshot of some of the areas that IERG is active:

Air-Related Issues
All of the work focused on implementing Section 39.5 of the Illinois Environmental Protection Act, permit streamlining, national ambient air quality standards, the Emission Reduction Market System regulations, reporting, monitoring, and the assessment of ozone transport, as well as other air related issues fall under this workgroup.

Land-Related Issues
This project focuses on ongoing issues in the general area of Land Pollution Control. The initial project dealt with the legislative and regulatory programs of Illinois’ TACO – tiered approach to corrective action program. The project also involved development of proportionate share liability implementing regulations. Issues such as amending Illinois’ TACO regulations and any waste-related regulations, as well as relations with the Office of Chemical Safety are incorporated into this project as they arise.

Water-Related Issues
Monitoring of the IEPA’s Triennial Review Process to identify and address problems or potential problems facing the regulated community was the genesis of this project. It rapidly became evident that the IEPA and USEPA were accelerating activities in water pollution related issues. The project has and will continue to be active in the regulatory processes related to antidegradation and TMDL issues. Pertinent issues such bio-criteria development, regulated recharge area establishment and Lake Michigan initiatives are incorporated into this project as they arise.

Climate Change & Sustainability-Related Issues
This project focuses on ongoing and upcoming issues regarding climate change policy, and industry’s response to public demand for determining facilities “carbon efficiency” and “carbon footprint.” The purpose of the project is to collect and relay information regarding these matters for the Members’ consideration and review in making management decisions affecting their operations. The project will further serve to allow companies to exchange information regarding “sustainability” programs to avoid duplicative efforts or implementing failed programs.

Topics addressed include carbon controls: greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions reporting, cap and trade program, carbon tax, renewable energy portfolio standards, etc. Further, this project monitors and communicates activities of initiatives associated with GHG matters, such as those by USEPA and Illinois EPA.

Legislative-Related Issues
Activities at the Capitol relating to environmental legislation or legislative initiatives that impact IERG’s Members are monitored and reported under this project. In the past, IERG has also pursued legislative initiatives that make improvements to existing environmental laws or make permitting programs more efficient and effective in the State.

Environmental Justice Issues
This project focuses on ongoing issues related to Environmental Justice. The primary focus of this project is the Illinois EPA’s implementation of its Environmental Justice Public Participation Policy, but it also tracks activities of Illinois EPA’s Environmental Justice Advisory Workgroup, as well as the expanding role of EJ at other state agencies and in legislatively created bodies such as Illinois’ Commission on Environmental Justice.