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Scrapbook Photo 07/18/14 - More Drilling on DCNR Land Delayed Until Court Rules On Oil & Gas Fund challenges. http://goo.gl/mQFrRi

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Crisci Associates, July 21, 2014
(7/21/2014)
* Court Dismisses Challenges To Act 13, Enjoins PUC Review Of Local Ordinances

Commonwealth Court Thursday dismissed the remaining challenges to the Act 13 drilling law remanded for reconsideration by the PA Supreme Court, but did enjoin the Public Utility Commission from reviewing local ordinances regulating drilling consistent with the higher Court’s ruling in December.

* More Drilling On DCNR Land Delayed Until Court Rules On Oil & Gas Fund Challenges

Commonwealth attorneys Friday announced they have negotiated a settlement in the case of PEDF v. Commonwealth, ensuring the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources receives essential funding while preserving the opportunity to present the Commonwealth’s case in court.

* DEP: Fiscal Code Provision On Conventional Wells Delays Drilling Regs 2-3 Months

DEP Secretary Chris Abruzzo told the DEP Citizens Advisory Council Tuesday the provision in the Fiscal Code bill passed by the General Assembly as part of the budget requiring DEP to have separate environmental requirements for conventional oil and gas wells will delay finalizing the Act 13 Chapter 78 drilling regulations for several months.

* Secretary Abruzzo: I’ll Continue To Advocate For An Increase In DEP’s Budget

DEP Secretary Chris Abruzzo told the DEP Citizens Advisory Council Tuesday he was very grateful for the $11.5 million increase in DEP’s FY 2014-15 budget this year and said he would continue to advocate for an increase in DEP’s budget because of the critical work done by the agency.

* Non-Surface Disturbance Natural Gas Leasing On July 30 DCNR Committee Agenda

DCNR’s Natural Gas Advisory Committee will meet on July 30 to hear an update on the proposed non-surface disturbance natural gas leasing of State Park and State Forest land for additional drilling.

* Add Us To Your Google+ Circle

PA Environment Digest now has a Google+ Circle called Green Works In PA.  Just go to your Google+ page and search for DHess@CrisciAssociates.com, the email for the Digest Editor David Hess,  and let us join your Circle.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule

Here are the Senate and House Calendars and Committee meetings showing bills of interest as well as a list of new environmental bills introduced--

* EQB Adopts Medical Waste Rule, Hears Update On Chloride, Sulfate Standard Setting

On Tuesday the Environmental Quality Board adopted final regulations comprehensively updating the medical and chemotherapeutic waste regulations, proposed regulations establishing the Land Reclamation Finance Guarantee and Bioenergy Crop Bonding Programs and heard a scientific update on chloride and sulfate toxicity testing in surface waters.

* Wildlife Foundation Awards $2.4 Million In Delaware River Watershed Grants

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Wednesday announced $2.4 million in grants as part of the first round of $7 million in funding to improve waters that contribute to the overall health of the Delaware River.

* DEP Awards $1.66 Million To Clean Streams Foundation For AMD Maintenance

The Department of Environmental Protection Monday announced it has awarded a $1.66 million grant to the Clean Streams Foundation, Inc. to maintain acid mine drainage (AMD) treatment facilities in Butler, Cambria, Clarion and Venango counties.

* Grants Awarded For Sinnemahoning Creek Projects By Fish & Boat Commission

The Fish and Boat Commission Tuesday announced $500,000 in grants to develop and implement projects that benefit fishing, boating, and aquatic resources in and around Sinnemahoning Creek in Cameron, Elk, Potter and McKean counties.

* EPA Awards 5 Urban Waters Grants In PA’s Delaware Watershed

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Thursday awarded $2.1 million to 37 organizations in 17 states and Puerto Rico to help protect and restore urban waters, improve water quality, and support community revitalization and other local priorities.

* Pennsylvania NRCS Receives $11.4 Million To Rehab 9 Dams

Communities across Pennsylvania will benefit from a $11.4 million investment in technical and financial assistance to rehabilitate dams that provide critical infrastructure and protect public health and safety under the NRCS Watershed Rehabilitation Program.

* Dog Lovers Have Until July 31 To Vote For Philadelphia’s Water Spokesdog

Dog lovers have until National Mutt Day on July 31 to vote for Philly Water’s Best Friend.  The dogs with the most votes will compete in two pageants next fall.

* Susquehanna River Basin Commission Hearing Aug. 7 On Consumptive Use Requests

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission will hold a public hearing on requests for consumptive water use on August 7 in Harrisburg. (formal notice)

* Governor’s Office Publishes Updated Regulatory Agenda

The Governor’s Office Saturday published its semi-annual Regulatory Agenda showing the status of existing and proposed regulatory changes listed by agency (PA Bulletin, Page 4641).  DCNR begins on page 4643, the Environmental Hearing Board on page 4646 and DEP begins on page 4646.

* Teacher Training Project WET Workshop Aug. 1 At Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve

The Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve in Westmoreland County will host a Project WET teacher training workshop on August 1.  Click Here for all the details.

* Hearings On Hilcorp Application For Gas Well Spacing Units, Pooling, Set For Sept. 16, 17

The Department of Environmental Protection Friday announced hearing officer Michael Bangs has rescheduled the public hearing sessions on an Application for Gas Well Spacing Units, or spacing order, (commonly called pooling) received from Hilcorp Energy Co., for September 16 and 17.

* Groups Call For Investigation Of Dept. Of Health On Fracking Complaints

Several environmental groups Tuesday called for a full investigation into actions by the state Department of Health around natural gas drilling complaints.

* DEP Told To Release Natural Gas Study Background Documents, Data Records

The PA Office of Open Records Wednesday directed the Department of Environmental Protection to release background documents and data records the agency has as part of its comprehensive study of radioactivity in natural gas production and distribution.

* After Harsh Winter, Natural Gas Storage At 5-Year Lows

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Tuesday on a report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration saying natural gas storage inventories are still below the five-year average. 

* Crude Oil Trains Again In The Pennsylvania Press

Several articles this week again put the spotlight on crude oil trains delivering product to Pennsylvania, including a “blast zone” map published by the environmental group PennFuture.

* Expert: Without Fracking Boom, U.S. Would Face Another Oil Crisis

StateImpact PA reported Tuesday on a presentation by energy expert and oil historian Daniel Yergin who said without the recent domestic boom in oil production, the United States would face another oil crisis.

* Keep PA Beautiful Affiliates Host Month-Long Juniata River Cleanup Initiative

Keep PA Beautiful affiliates, Keep Huntingdon County Beautiful, Keep Juniata County Beautiful, PA CleanWays of Mifflin County, and Keep Perry County Beautiful will be hosting a four-county wide month-long cleanup initiative along the Juniata River.

* Historic Pike County Bridge Offered For Sale, Reuse By PennDOT

The Departments of General Services and Transportation are seeking buyers interested in purchasing and preserving the historic Pond Eddy Bridge in Pike County.

* EPA Supports PA Small Business Sustainable, Innovative Products

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Monday announced 21 small businesses in 15 states are receiving funding from the EPA to develop and commercialize innovative, sustainable technologies to address current environmental issues.

* Women Forest Landowners Educational Retreat Sept. 25-28 In Lycoming County

Women across the mid-Atlantic region who own, care for, or are interested in learning more about forestland are invited to apply to attend the fourth annual Women and Their Woods Educational Retreat from September 25-28 at Camp Susque in Trout Run, Lycoming County.

* June Issue Of Friends Of Allegheny Wilderness Newsletter Now Available

The June issue of FAWN, the official newsletter of the Friends of Allegheny Wilderness, is now available.  Click Here to read a copy.

* Fish & Boat Commission Offers Discounted License For Labor Day Youth Fishing Day

The Fish and Boat Commission Monday announced it will host a second Mentored Youth Fishing Day on Labor Day, September 1, on 17 Panfish Enhancement lakes.

* Ned Smith Center For Nature & Art Opens Amphitheater July 25, Annual Festival July 26

The Ned Smith Center for Nature & Art in Millersburg, Dauphin County, will hold a grand opening for the DeSoto Amphitheater on July 25 starting at 6:00 p.m. and its annual Festival on July 26.

* Your 2 Cents: Issues On Advisory Committee Agendas

This section gives you a continuously updated thumbnail sketch of issues to be considered in upcoming advisory committee meetings where the agendas have been released

* Grants & Awards

This section gives you a heads up on upcoming deadlines for awards and grants and other recognition programs.  NEW means new from last week.

* Budget/Quick NewsClips

Here's a selection of NewsClips on environmental topics from around the state--

* Marcellus Shale NewsClips

Here are NewsClips on topics related to Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling---

* Flooding/Watershed NewsClips

Here are NewsClips on watershed topics from around the state--

* Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits

The Environmental Quality Board published notice of proposed regulations setting emission standards from fiberglass boat manufacturing materials and related public hearings.

* Calendar Of Events

Upcoming legislative meetings, conferences, workshops, plus links to other online calendars.  Meetings are in Harrisburg unless otherwise noted.  NEW means new from last week.  Go to the online Calendar webpage.

* CLICK HERE To Print Entire PA Environment Digest

CLICK HERE to Print The Entire PA Environment Digest.

* Stories invited

Send your stories, photos and links to videos about your project, environmental issues or programs for publication in the PA Environment Digest to:  DHess@CrisciAssociates.com.

* Supporting Member PA Outdoor Writers Assn./PA Trout Unlimited

PA Environment Digest is a supporting member of the Pennsylvania Outdoor Writers Association, Pennsylvania Council Trout Unlimited and the Doc Fritchey Chapter Trout Unlimited.

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