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An Environment Agency advisory committee has drafted a plan that would provide a standard for companies in gauging their environmental performance and that could then be used as a yardstick for environment-conscious consumers and investors, agency officials said Monday.

The “environmental performance index” proposal recommends that companies systematically log their material inputs, waste outputs, energy consumption and other factors into a standardized format. The government hopes this will push companies to evaluate and reduce the burden they place on the environment, encourage more environmentally friendly manufacturing processes and make environmental records part of purchasing decisions.

The draft is also designed to be comprehensible to the layman.

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