Sandia/California Environmental Management

Sandia/California is committed to environmental stewardship. We integrate environmental risk assessment, planning, and impact mitigation into every aspect of our work. We also plan and manage all programs, operations, processes, and facilities so that they minimize waste creation, pollution, and adverse impact on the public and the environment.

To ensure that all Sandians are responsible stewards of the environmental resources in our care, Sandia has established an Environmental Management System (EMS) with five environmental functions, described below. Each year, we evaluate how our operations interact with the environment and identify our significant environmental aspects. Simply put, an environmental aspect is a pathway for an environmental impact. Sandia establishes targets and actions for each significant aspect to minimize potential environmental impact.

Our significant aspects are:

  • water discharges
  • air emissions
  • land use
  • general transportation
  • hazardous waste

Further information can be found in the EMS brochure (PDF, 715 KB). In addition, Sandia/California’s site environmental report (PDF, 2.9 MB) contains specific details about EMS program activities.

EMS Recognition

ISO 14001:2004 Certified. The Sandia/California EMS Program follows the International Standard for Environmental Management Systems, ISO 14001. The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) is the world’s leading developer of international standards. The ISO’s standards specify the requirements for state-of-the-art products, services, and managerial and organizational practices. ISO 14001:2004 is a generic management system standard that requires an environmental policy, objectives and targets, programs for implementation, monitoring and measurement, preventive and corrective actions, involvement at all levels, and continual improvement. The Sandia/California EMS Program received ISO 14001:2004 certification from NSF International Strategic Registrations, an independent registrar, in September 2006.

Certificate of Registration

View larger version of Sandia/California ISO 14001:2004 Registration Certificate

Air Quality

The Air Quality Function supports site environmental goals by obtaining and maintaining permits and registrations; helping Sandia/California comply with permit conditions and regulatory requirements; and examining the potential impact of air pollution sources through regulatory analysis, emissions calculations, and risk assessments. This function also implements our site’s Spare the Air initiatives.

Environmental Monitoring

The Environmental Monitoring Function monitors water quality at Sandia/California through routine sampling and analysis of storm water runoff, wastewater effluent, and groundwater from on-site monitoring wells. This function also monitors gamma radiation in ambient air to ensure that site operations are not making significant contributions to the ambient radiation dose in the surrounding environment. In addition, the function monitors ecological resources, such as wildlife, found on-site.

Environmental Planning

The Environmental Planning Function supports broad site planning initiatives and coordinates site-level environmental analyses and assessments helping Sandia/California comply with the National Environmental Policy Act.

Pollution Prevention and Waste Minimization

The Pollution Prevention and Waste Minimization Function provides technical assistance across the California site, workable recycling programs, and strategies for reducing waste generation and use of natural resources. This function helps Sandia/California apply source reduction, affirmative procurement, waste minimization measures, and recycling principles to all site operations.

Waste Management

The Waste Management Function manages the processing and disposition for all hazardous, radioactive, and mixed waste generated at Sandia/California. This function works closely with Pollution Prevention to minimize the amount of waste being generated.