Our environmental programs transform our environmental policy into practical applications and concrete action. The commitment to do so starts at the top. Dominion’s top management sets the clear expectation that it is every employee’s responsibility to carry out Dominion’s environmental policy. Goals are set by each business to address environmental requirements going forward, identifying and providing the necessary resources to address future needs. Performance against these goals is linked to the compensation of employees.
Reaching our goals, maintaining compliance and demonstrating stewardship in the areas where we operate requires employees who are dedicated and trained for the task. Our environmental professionals include scientists, engineers, chemists and biologists to provide expertise to ensure responsible environmental operations.
Facility operations have "first-line" environmental compliance responsibility. One or more environmental professionals at each major facility or region support our operations in maintaining and improving environmental compliance and processes.
Employees are trained to follow established processes and procedures to inspect, monitor and maintain equipment to minimize the impact of our operations. These procedures translate environmental requirements and good management practices into action.
The corporate environmental staff provides oversight and support to ensure requirements are addressed and to assist operations for planning for the future. The staff is also engaged with regulatory agencies to work toward responsible laws and regulation.
In addition to periodic self-assessments by operations, Dominion routinely audits its facilities to assure compliance with environmental regulations and policies.
The audits are conducted by a separate group from operations or the environmental staff to allow a fresh set of eyes to assess our performance.
Third-party ISO 14001 Environmental Management System Certification at Millstone Power Station has integrated the environmental management process and regulatory requirements into site procedures and day-to-day processes.
Environmental programs are in place and monitored by top management. There are over 4,000 procedural steps that ensure compliance with 1,500 state and federal regulatory requirements.
Millstone was the first nuclear power station in New England to meet the ISO 14001 criteria for environmental management systems.
Stakeholders have a positive influence on how we shape projects and conduct operations. We are committed to maintaining strong relationships with neighbors, regulators, community leaders and other key stakeholders.
We back up this commitment by engaging stakeholders as we embark on new projects and work on strong relationships with neighbors around our operations.
We further engage the communities where we operate through the support of a variety of environmental and educational activities through the Dominion Foundation.
Dominion worked closely with the Maryland Conservation Council and the Sierra Club, partners in a conservation agreement at the Cove Point liquefied natural gas terminal in Maryland, to enable an expansion at the facility while maintaining the controls and protections desired by the environmental groups.
Dominion held numerous public meetings to inform the public about the pipelines and compressor stations to be constructed to expand the site’s transmission pipeline capacity.
The process both educated the public about the planned projects and provided Dominion with input to be used during project planning.
Another part of our environmental management approach involves grappling with tough challenges head-on. In April 2003, Dominion finalized a landmark agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and five states, committing to a long-term program to significantly reduce sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate emissions across our coal-fired generating fleet in Virginia and West Virginia.
The agreement, estimated to cost $1.2 billion in capital investment over 12 years, is one of the most comprehensive efforts ever taken by an energy company to improve air quality.
A number of environmental challenges lie ahead. Dominion is committed to working with stakeholders to continue to better understand these issues and to develop responsible public policy.