Facilitative regulation embodies regulatory flexibility, the empowerment of local communities and devolved, collaborative decision-making. Based on interviews with key stakeholders, this article examines one the most important examples of facilitative regulation, the Environment Improvement Plan (EIP). This article begins by connecting the EIP to broader shifts in the styles and practices of environmental regulation, it then outlines the achievements of the EIP instrument, as well as some of its limitations and the challenges confronting its successful implementation. In particular, the analysis finds that while the EIP can achieve a shift in both the thinking and performance of many large enterprises, over time, EIPs tend to produce diminishing returns, suggesting a “life cycle” theory of EIP effectiveness. Policy and theoretical implications flowing from these findings are also explored.