State of Vermont
Agency of Natural Resources
Department of Environmental Conservation
Compliance & Enforcement Division
Press Release

March 03, 2003
Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, Inc.

WATERBURY- Agency of Natural Resources Secretary Elizabeth McLain today announced that the Enforcement Division has formally settled an environmental violation involving Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, Inc., a hospital in Bennington. The settlement includes a $9,540 supplemental environmental project.

During the course of its routine record keeping and reporting activities, Southwestern Vermont Medical Center discovered that from 1999 through 2001 its three oil fired boilers had consumed excessive quantities of residual grade fuel oil, in violation of the usage limits in its Air Pollution Control Permit. This also resulted in higher than allowed emissions of sulfur dioxide during 1999. Sulfur dioxide is a regulated air pollutant that has possible health effects and also contributes to the formation of "acid rain."

After the investigation was completed, Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, Inc. was notified of the violations and agreed to settle the matter. The settlement was reduced to an assurance of discontinuance and was so ordered by the Environmental Court on February 25, 2003. In it, the hospital agreed to fund a $9,540 supplemental environmental project. The hospital has filed an application for an amendment to their permit, as required, and has agreed to limit the sulfur content of the fuels it burns in the future.

Involved Program: Air Pollution Control Division of the Department of Environmental Conservation

For Further Information please contact:
Attorney Sal Spinosa at 802-241-3820 or email to