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About Best Practices

The Compendium of Environmental Stewardship Practices in Construction and Maintenance includes thousands of individual practices used by DOTs across the country.   Through a peer review vetting process, a number of practices in the Compendium have been identified as Best Practices.  This vetting process is rigorous and it involves a team made up of a minimum of four highly qualified and experienced practitioners ("Working Groups") who convene several times over the course of several months, typically via conference calls.  A Steering Group provides oversight and guidance to the Working Groups.    

The Working Groups are assigned to perform a detailed review of the content of "first tier" chapter levels (e.g. Section 8.3, Strategic Planning for Reduced Salt Usage).  The Working Group members start by considering three evaluation criteria.  These are "sufficiently beneficial, practical and cost-effective".  Working Groups may modify, delete or add evaluation criteria to best fit their subject.  Once the evaluation criteria are agreed upon, each member individually evaluates each practice using the evaluation criteria and a definitive rating system.  A facilitator compiles, organizes, and summarizes the individual results.  Working Group members then discuss and review the cumulative responses to reach consensus on Best Practices.

In a report to the Steering Group, Working Groups conclude their effort by distinguishing Best Practices from those that are not selected as Best Practices, and by identifying any practices which they determine should be removed from the Compendium. 

You can identify the vetted Best Practices by the [ Best Practices Symbol ] icon.   Look for the number of Best Practices to grow as AASHTO continues its review efforts of additional practices.  You are encouraged to assist by providing your thoughts and ideas for Best Practices in the "Comments" section of this page.   All practitioners are encouraged to suggest additional environmental stewardship practices.  Just click on the "Suggest a Best Practice" link and fill in the brief questionnaire.  If you would like to volunteer to help vet practices in your area of expertise click on the "Volunteer to Vet " link and fill in your contact information.

Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction and Research Approach
Chapter 2: Organizational Environmental Stewardship Practices
Chapter 3: Designing for Environmental Stewardship in Construction & Maintenance
Chapter 4: Construction Practices for Environmental Stewardship
Chapter 5: Pavement, Materials, and Recycling
Chapter 6: Maintenance Facilities Management
Chapter 7: Bridge Maintenance
Chapter 8: Winter Operations and Salt, Sand and Chemical Management
Chapter 9: Roadside Vegetation Management
Chapter 10: Roadside Management and Maintenance: Beyond Vegetation
Chapter 11: Appendix
Lists: Examples | Tables | Figures
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