SUGARBUSH, VT May 16, 2012 – Sugarbush Resort accepted the Governor’s Award for Environmental Excellence at the Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility spring conference in Burlington.
As part of its ongoing efforts to be responsible stewards of the environment, Sugarbush Resort partnered with Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc. (VHB), an environmental consulting firm, to develop a long-term water quality remediation plan for the entire resort.
The programs have proven successful: In the summer of 2011, the Vermont Agency of Natural Resources removed Rice Brook from the state’s list of “impaired waters” due to the resort’s diligent clean-up work.
“Sugarbush is committed to being better stewards of the environment,” said Win Smith, president and owner of Sugarbush. “We are continuously looking to make sound investments that reduces the environmental impact of doing business. We are happy to have been recognized by Governor Shumlin for our efforts.”
Rice Brook is the third brook Sugarbush has restored to high-water quality conditions. Chase and Slide Brook were also restored to meet Vermont’s water quality standards.
A little more than a mile in length, Rice Brook forms in the higher elevations near the Lincoln Peak base area at Sugarbush and flows east where it joins Clay Brook before flowing into the Mad River about halfway between Warren and Waitsfield. It is part of the larger Winooski River watershed. Rice Brook’s water quality problems resulted from untreated stormwater runoff; that is, water that runs off from impervious surfaces during rainstorms and from snowmelt, rather than naturally filtering through the soil. Stormwater runoff results in increases in pollutants such as silt and sand entering streams, and also higher rates of flow, causing stream channels to erode. The plan that Sugarbush and VHB developed, in partnership with the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation, addressed both of these issues through design and implementation of state-of-the-art stormwater controls.