Sustainability and Environment
The Manchester VAMC is committed to protecting the environment and will integrate environment stewardship into all aspects of its operations.
The Manchester Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) is committed to protecting the environment and will integrate environmental stewardship into all aspects of its operations
The Green Environmental Management System (GEMS) Committee is chaired by the Associate Director and supported by senior leadership. As an organization, we will continue to invest resources to support strategic plan objectives and take appropriate actions to maintain our position as a local, regional , and national leader in sustainable practices.
Use lifecycle costing that accounts for both the economic and environmental performance of purchases throughout use and upon disposal. Take a long-term approach in evaluating reusable versus disposable products. Collaborate with suppliers to support environmentally preferable purchasing and sustainability in procurement and supply chain transportation.
Follow guiding principles for new construction to meet US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design criteria.
Conserve finite natural resources to reduce the VAMC environmental footprint and energy and water use intensity through new project development and operational improvement.
Implement pollution prevention measures that reduce waste and emissions. Limit the use of hazardous and toxic substances to the maximum extent possible. Utilize the hierarchy of waste management that emphasizes source reduction and reuse first followed by recycling.
Develop and implement a GEMS that will meet requirements of Executive Orders and comply with all federal, state, and local environmental regulations.
Mitigate adverse environmental impact and climate change through sustainable practices across all aspects of VAMC operations and policies. Engage and educate our staff, leaders, and healthcare providers on the connection between health and the environment to ensures a sustainable future for the people and communities we serve.
The Manchester VAMC is regulated as a small, non-traditional Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) under the 2017 New Hampshire Small MS4 General Permit. A small MS4 is defined as a publicly owned conveyance or system of conveyances from ditches, curbs or underground pipes that divert stormwater into the surface waters of the state. The VAMC stormwater system discharges to outfalls located on the southeastern portion of the campus along Smyth Road. Depending on the volume of runoff, stormwater discharging from the VAMC eventually reaches a culvert located in the southeastern adjacent neighborhood that is part of the City of Manchester’s MS4. According to the City of Manchester, stormwater collected by this culvert discharges to Goldfish Pond, followed by Dorrs Pond, which ultimately discharges to the Merrimack River.
The permit can be viewed at https://www.epa.gov/npdes-permits/new-hampshire-small-ms4-general-permit
To implement the permit requirements, the VAMC has developed a Stormwater Management Plan. The Stormwater Management Plan is based on six elements called Control Measures with associated best management practices. The Control Measures provide the framework and describe actions designed to reduce pollutant discharges to receiving waterbodies.
The six Control Measures are:
- Public Education and Outreach
- Public Involvement and Participation
- Illicit Discharge Detection and Elimination
- Construction Site Runoff Control
- Stormwater Management in New Development and Redevelopment (i.e. Post-Construction Runoff Control)
- Good Housekeeping and Pollution Prevention
The permit also requires that the VAMC file an Annual Report to the EPA and NH Department of Environmental Services. The Annual Report contains information regarding activities associated with the Stormwater Management Plan best management practices that occurred during the previous reporting year period – July 1 thru June 30.
Comments and review of the VAMC Stormwater Management Plan and Annual Reports are welcome and are part of Public Involvement and Participation Control Measure.