Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Environmental Management System


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Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Environmental Management System (EMS)







Maintenance and Operations, State Ferry Service, and Materials Testing Facilities. 



MDOT’s focus on Maintenance and Operations was based on the need to ensure and enhance compliance in managing waste streams at facilities that fall under the purview of maintenance (including Highway, Traffic, rest areas, moveable bridges, etc).


EMS efforts were then expanded to MDOT’s testing and chemistry labs following identification of problems with safety and environmental compliance,


The EMS was expanded to include Ferry Terminals in 2002.  These facilities were the only remaining facilities operated by MDOT without an EMS.  The EMS procedures and processes developed for Maintenance could be readily applied to them.  Inclusion of Ferry Terminals demonstrates that EMS concepts and processes can be applied to a wide variety of facilities..




MDOT’s EMS efforts are based upon the Plan – Do – Check – Act process and incorporate all of the EMS processes roadmap steps.



·    As a result of using a structured, consistent audit program the level of compliance in operations and maintenance has been substantially improved AND MAINTAINED.

·    In 2000, EPA enforcement staff conducted compliance inspections at several MDOT maintenance facilities and testing labs.  Although minor problems were pointed out (and immediately addressed by MDOT) no major problems were found and no fines were imposed.

·    Employee “ownership” of and pride in their facilities and actions has been greatly improved.  In turn, the level of compliance achieved is much higher than with prior initiatives.


 “Our EMS has been remarkably successful in avoiding environmental penalties and fines.  In most cases, the violations just don’t exist when enforcement agencies visit our facilities.  In cases where violations are found, we have found that the best possible response to the violation is to tighten up our EMS to make sure that similar incidents never happen in the future.  Enforcement agencies have been quick to agree that tighter policies or tighter protocols are a more lasting solution than punitive fines.”  John Dority, Chief Engineer, MDOT.


·    The EMS processes and procedures have enabled MDOT managers/supervisors to more efficiently manage their materials (by sharing among facilities) and waste.  These actions have provided costs savings.





Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Environmental Management System (EMS)





·    More efficient management of materials and control of facility operations lead to reductions in the space/area needed to conduct/support maintenance activities.  From an immediate perspective, less space means less opportunity for noncompliance and a reduction in the costs and environmental impacts associated with noncompliance.  From a long term perspective, a need for less space could lead to savings in land maintenance and acquisition costs.



·    Employees participated in the efforts to develop relevant, easily understood procedures, processes, and tools for each EMS.  These efforts each occurred over more than a year and required periodic meetings and/or contacts.

·    The audit program requires the ongoing, periodic participation of a small group of internal auditors (employees) to conduct the audits, and review and confirm completion of corrective actions.



·    Commitment of senior management at the very beginning of the EMS efforts ensured that:

o   Resources needed for implementation were available,

o   All involved in or affected by an EMS stayed focused on the implementation activities and schedule, and

o   All affected employees understood that all employees are stewards of the environment.

·    Make sure that all employees understand that their day-to-day actions can have a positive or negative effect on the environment.

·    Ensure that training, communications, guidance, procedures, etc. is easily understood and can be applied and related to day-to-day actions of employees.



MDOT’s EMS is based on and provides the means to ensure environmental stewardship for all employees.  MDOT is using the ISO 14001 EMS Standard as the basic famework/model for its EMS.  However, there are no current plans to seek ISO 14001 certification.


“Our EMS is a foundation for future initiatives.  Each new regulation or new goal of sustainability can be addressed by building on the framework or system we have in place with our EMS.  We are building on our successful M&O EMS into a larger departmental EMS, adding policies and protocols piece by piece based on management needs and management capacity.”  Alan Stearns, Director, Environmental Office.


·     The MDOT EMS audit procedures follow the criteria presented in: the ISO 14001 EMS Standard, the ISO EMS internal audit standards, and American Society for Quality guidelines.

·     Maine has developed environmental and safety audits for all of its facilities.

·     The audit systematically documents and verifies whether the facilities and processes are in conformance or compliance with legal requirements, internal policies, adopted standards, and defined procedures.





Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Environmental Management System (EMS)



·     Gaps are determined and strategies developed to continually improve environmental and safety performance.  Corrective actions are tracked and timely closure of audit findings is a MDOT priority.

·    Regulations and agency environmental commitments are used to develop priority areas and the annual audit plan.

·    The audits are conducted with cross-functional teams of MDOT employees who report their findings to local management and to an Environmental Management Committee.

·    Audit protocols consist of written policies and procedures, checklists, and guides used to define the audit scope.

·    Completion of the corrective actions in the Corrective Action Plan is monitored by the audit team leader and the Environmental Management Committee on a quarterly basis, and follow-up reviews are performed.


Various guides and procedures have been developed to fulfill the EMS objectives of consistency, repeatability, integration of environment into day-to-day activities, measure performance, and ease of understanding.

·    Erosion and Sediment Control Plans are required for all MDOT projects.  Pursuant to a MOA and MDOT specifications (see Tools below) all Plans are reviewed and approved by Environmental Office staff before construction can commence. 

·    Maintenance and Construction projects are inspected by Environmental Office staff who, along with the MDOT Construction manager, are authorized to require changes to address environmental deficiencies on projects.

·    All employees are required to be familiar with MDOT’s environmental policies and procedures that affect their work, as documented in MDOT’s Environmental Policies and Procedures Manuals.

·    Management is proactive in all follow-up measures, particularly those that require department-wide policy changes and dedicated funding.

·    Tracking and benchmarking problems and successes through an integrated database.



Christine Olson, Environmental Office.



To discuss benefits of EMS: Mark Guimont, Director of BOMO,202/624-3600;  Bruce Yeaton, Director, Testing and Exploration, 202/624-3400; Ron Roy, Director, Maine State Ferry Service, 202/624-3250.



·     Exhibit 1 provides an excerpt of Best Management Practices (BMPs) for Erosion and Sediment Control, April 1999.  This document includes: BMPs for both routine maintenance operations and major projects, discussions of when and where to use the BMPs, and design standards for structural BMPs.

·     Exhibit 2 presents and excerpt of the Environmental and Safety Policies and Procedures for the Bureau of Maintenance and Operations.  This document establishes procedures for audit program and developing new procedures.  It also defines objective, applicability, target audience, responsible parties, requirements of each policy and procedure, and training requirements.




Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT)

Environmental Management System (EMS)



·    Exhibit 3 presents an excerpt from the Safety and Environmental Management Manual for the MDOT Materials Testing Laboratories.  This Manual contains: a Chemical Hygiene Plan, Hazardous Assessments for all lab procedures, Environmental & Safety Procedures, relevant MDOT Administrative Policy Memoranda, training requirements and inspection and auditing requirements.

·    Exhibit 4 provides an excerpt of the Laboratory Safety Inspection Report Form.  This checklist is used for quarterly inspections of: lab practices, personal protection requirements, hazard communication, chemical handling and storage, waste handling and disposal, emergency management, ventilation, safety equipment, and housekeeping.

·    Exhibit 5 is an excerpt of the Safety and Environmental Management Manual for the State Ferry Service.  This Manual includes the Health & Safety and Environmental Policy for the ferry service, audit and inspection requirements, environmental & safety procedures (similar to Maintenance manual), and training requirements.

·    Exhibit 6 presents an excerpt of the M&O Greenbook: An Environmental Practices Guide.  This Guide is a small, laminated field guide for handling and disposal of hazardous materials, hazardous wastes, oil and equipment maintenance wastes, materials management, and spill prevention and response.  It also includes a quick reference waste disposal guide.

·    Exhibit 7 is an excerpt from Supplemental Specification 656: Temporary Soil Erosion and Water Pollution Control.  To ensure that erosion and sedimentation control is incorporated in all MDOT activities, this specification is included in all project contracts.





Exhibit 1

Excerpt from BMPs for Erosion and Sediment Control




Exhibit 2

Excerpt from M&O Environmental and Safety Policies and Procedures







Exhibit 3

Excerpt from Safety and Environmental Management Manual






Exhibit 4

Excerpt from Laboratory Safety Inspection Report Form


Exhibit 5

Excerpt from Safety and Environmental Management Manual for the

State Ferry Service






Exhibit 6

Excerpt from M&O Greenbook: An Environmental Practices Guide






Exhibit 7

Excerpt from MDOT Supplemental Specification 656






656.1 Responsibility of the Contractor-Prepare and Follow Plan   The Contractor shall

provide continuous and effective temporary soil erosion and water pollution control for the

Project that is appropriate to the construction means, methods and sequencing allowed by the

Contract and selected by the Contractor. To do so, the Contractor shall prepare and submit a

;oil Erosion and Water Pollution Control Plan (SEWPCP) and properly implement its approved

SEWPCP.  The Contractor shall have its SEWPCP approved, perform a preconstruction field

review, and install and certify initial controls before commencing any Work, which could

disturb soils or impact water quality.


            If the Contractor properly implements its approved SEWPCP, then (l) any Work required in excess of that required by the SEWPCP will be Extra Work, (2) any Delay resulting from any such excess Work will be analyzed in accordance with Section 109.5 -Adjustments for Delay, and (3) the Contractor will not be responsible for damages relating to insufficient soil erosion and water pollution control including the cost of all environmental enforcement actions, penalties, or monetary settlements assessed any environmental regulatory entity and all costs incurred by or through the Department.


            If the Contractor fails to prepare, submit, or seek approval of a SEWPCP or fails to properly implement its approved SEWPCP, then (1) the Department may suspend all Work, (2) the Department may withhold all Progress Payments or any portion thereof until the Contractor  remedies all deficiencies; (3) the Department may remedy deficiencies with Departmental or contracted forces and deduct the cost thereof from payments otherwise due the Contractor; (4) any delay resulting from such failure or non-compliance will be a Non-excusable Delay; and (5) the Contractor will be responsible for all damages arising from or related to such failure or non-compliance including the cost of all environmental enforcement actions, penalties, or monetary settlements assessed by any environmental regulatory entity and all costs incurred by or through the Department including legal and consulting fees.