BLR News


Can CFOs and CEOs Ever Love Environmental and Safety Compliance?

Old Saybrook, CT – January 3, 2005 – Safety and environmental managers across the country have been busy lobbying their management to justify departmental budget requests. The argument seems simple enough — protecting worker safety and preserving the environment always seems like a good idea. But with skeptical top brass faced with relentless costs and competitive pressures, is there any way to convince management that being a good corporate citizen is worth the cost?

"Traditionally, EHS (Environmental, Health, and Safety) functions are viewed as cost centers, or a drain on the company’s resources," says David Galt, EHS editor at Business & Legal Reports, Inc. EHS roles typically include training, energy efficiency measures, pollution prevention, waste reduction, safety compliance, and environmental permit compliance.

"The problem is not only that these activities are viewed as expenses," says Galt, "but it’s also made worse because most managers do not have the first idea how to convey EHS benefits to top management in terms that will be understood."

The environmental compliance experts at BLR have just developed a toolkit of techniques to help compliance managers vividly display the economic advantages of EHS programs. The ROI of EHS: Practical Strategies to Demonstrate the Business Value of Environmental, Health, and Safety Functions, puts several easy-to-use financial tools at managers’ disposal.

To get management to say yes, according to Galt, "the key is for managers to learn to translate costs into investments that can be seen as benefiting the firm’s business value, using the right EHS-business value measuring metrics." Galt cites as an example a budget item to reduce lost workdays from accidents. The economic benefit would be the $/year or percent insurance premium cost reduction. Or, if a proposal were to invest in a new effluent reduction system, the benefit would be the dollar savings resulting from reduced waste disposal quantities.

EHS managers can receive a Free excerpt of The ROI of EHS tool kit by calling BLR at 800-727-5257, or e-mailing

About BLR:
Old Saybrook, Conn.-based BLR produces plain-English references for environmental and safety managers, including Environmental Compliance (in Your State), a state-specific service. For more information and a free catalog, call 1-800-727-5257 or visit

BLR Editor: David Galt
860 510-0100 x 2378