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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
May 27, 2019 Issue #778
(5/27/2019)
* Team From Carmichaels Area High School, Greene County Wins 2019 PA State Envirothon

For the second year in a row, the winner of the 36th Pennsylvania Envirothon was a team from Carmichaels Area High School in Greene County with a score of 536 out of a possible 600.

* Winners Of PEC, Dominion Energy 2019 Western PA Environmental Awards, Lifetime Achievement Award Honored

On May 22, Dominion Energy and the PA Environmental Council honored the winners of the Western Pennsylvania Environmental Awards and the recipient of a Lifetime Achievement award at a special celebration in Pittsburgh.

* PA Land Trust Assn. Honors Troy Firth, Stroud Township With Conservation Leadership Awards

On May 18, the PA Land Trust Association honored Troy Firth with the Lifetime Conservation Leadership Award and Stroud Township, Monroe County with Local Government Conservation Leadership Award

* DCNR, Mid State Trail Association Celebrate Mid State Trail As PA's 2019 Trail Of The Year

On May 24, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn joined Mid State Trail Association members and other hiking enthusiasts in celebrating the designation of the Mid State Trail as Pennsylvania’s 2019 Trail of the Year.

* Winners Of 2019 Excellence In Green Stormwater Infrastructure Awards In Philadelphia Region Announced

At a special celebration on May 23, the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia recently announced the winners of the 2019 Excellence in Green Stormwater Infrastructure Awards.

* DEP's Mark Hand Receives Governor's Award For Excellence For Work On Encouraging Electric Vehicle Use

On May 20, Gov. Tom Wolf has honored Department of Environmental Protection Energy Program Specialist Mark Hand with a Governor’s Award for Excellence for his leadership in preparing the Commonwealth for broader use of electric vehicles (EVs).

* Op-Ed: In Praise Of Rachel Carson And Public Service; Happy Birthday Rachel Carson!

By James M. Seif, Former Secretary, Department of Environmental Protection

* EPCAMR, WPCAMR Urging Local Governments, Watershed, Environmental Groups To Tell Congress To Reauthorize Federal Mine Reclamation Fee

The Eastern and Western PA Coalitions for Abandoned Mine Reclamation are urging counties, local governments, watershed and environmental groups to pass a resolution to urge Congress to reauthorize the federal Mine Reclamation fee for another 15 years.

* University Of Maryland Chesapeake Bay Report Card Finds Extreme Rainfall In 2018 Affected Indicator Scores, But Bay Retains C Grade

On May 21, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science released its annual Chesapeake Bay and Watershed Report Card noting indicator scores were affected by the extreme rainfall in 2018 either decreasing the scores or keeping them the same, similar to the results of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s State of the Bay Report.

* CBF-PA: Pennsylvania's Rivers And Streams Need Your Help! Urge Legislators To Make Critical Investments In Clean Water Now!

On May 22, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA issued this call to action to help restore Pennsylvania's rivers and streams all across the state.

* Chesapeake Bay Oyster Recovery Partnership Expands Shell Recycling Program To Pittsburgh

On May 23, the Oyster Recovery Partnership announced it has expanded its shell recycling program, the Shell Recycling Alliance, to Pittsburgh where it has seen overwhelming success seven months into operations.

* PA Supreme Court Upholds Lower Court Ruling Allowing Local Zoning Permits For Drilling In Westmoreland County

On May 21, the PA Supreme Court denied an appeal of a November 2018 Commonwealth Court decision turning back a challenge to special exception permits granted by a township for unconventional natural gas drilling based on concerns about the storage of drilling wastewater and alleged violations of the state’s Environmental Rights Amendment.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule/Bills Introduced

Here are the Senate and House Calendars for the next voting session day and Committees scheduling action on bills of interest as well as a list of new environmental bills introduced--

* Sen. Bartolotta To Introduce Bill To Make Act 54 Report On Subsidence Damage To Structures, Water Supplies, Streams Due To Underground Coal Mining Optional

On May 17, Sen. Camera Bartolotta (R-Washington) sent a co-sponsor memo to Senators announcing her intent to introduce legislation to make reporting on subsidence damage to homes and business, water supplies and streams caused by underground coal mining optional under the Bituminous Mine Subsidence and Land Conservation Act.

* CBF: Congress Understands The Value Of Restoring The Chesapeake Bay

On May 22, Congress released details about Interior Department funding legislation that calls for increasing the annual budget for the Chesapeake Bay Program. The bill proposes spending $85 million per year on the Bay Program, an increase of $12 million over the previous $73 million per year.

* POWR: DEP Presentation On Draft Integrated Water Quality Report Showing 40% Of Streams Impaired June 4 In Harrisburg

On May 24, the PA Organization for Watersheds and Rivers announced DEP will hold a presentation on the draft PA Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report on June 4 from 10:30 to Noon in the Auditorium of the Rachel Carson Building in Harrisburg.

* Northcentral PA Stream Restoration Partnership Projects Underway

After months of planning and prep, the Northcentral Stream Restoration Partnership is in the “(muck)boots on the ground” phase of this year’s stream restoration projects.

* French Creek Valley Conservancy Holds River Snorkeling Presentation May 30 In Meadville

Join the French Creek Valley Conservancy for a presentation on river snorkeling on May 30. Underwater naturalist Keith Williams will share his adventures of exploring and discovering the underwater world of rivers and streams in the Mid-Atlantic region.

* Emerging Contaminants Highlighted At 2019 PA Groundwater Symposium

Groundwater professionals from across Pennsylvania and nearby states gathered on April 30 and May 1 for the 2019 Pennsylvania Groundwater Symposium.

* Penn State Extension Schedules 7 Safe Drinking Water Clinics For Well Owners

Penn State Extension has scheduled 7 Safe Drinking Water Clinics in Western and Northcentral Pennsylvania from June 18 to September 18 covering testing and protecting your private drinking water supplies.

* 31 County Conservation Districts Awarded Over $72,000 In Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-Grants

Pennsylvania’s County Conservation Districts were recently awarded over $72,000 for thirty-five pollution reduction projects in thirty-one counties as part of the Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-Grant Program.

* Allegheny Land Trust Holds May 28 Meeting On Big Sewickley Creek Watershed In Allegheny, Beaver, Butler Counties

The Allegheny Land Trust invites residents to attend a May 28 community meeting on the Big Sewickley Creek Watershed Rivers Conservation and Stewardship Plan at the Marshall Township Municipal Building, 525 Pleasant Hill Road in Wexford from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

* Trees, Streams & Volunteers: Penn State Greening The Lower Susquehanna Program

Pennsylvania, or Penn’s Woods, was historically forested. However, changes to the land to allow for agriculture and urban development means don’t have as many forests today. The result is that many Pennsylvania streams and rivers are polluted, regularly flood, and provide poor habitat for aquatic life.

* Chesapeake Bay Sustainable Landscape Professional Certification Course June 20-21 In State College

Registration is now open for summer Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional Certification courses to be held in several locations.  In Pennsylvania, a Level I course will be held in State College, Centre County June 20-21.

* PA Section-American Water Resources Assn. Conference On Stormwater Set For June 6 In Lancaster

The PA Section - American Water Resources Association will hold its Annual Conference and Meeting: Managing Stormwater - Applied Urban and Suburban Best Practices on June 6 in Lancaster.

* PSATS Accepting Workshop Proposals For Oct. 16, Nov. 14 Stormwater Conferences

The PA State Association of Township Supervisors is now accepting proposals for interactive and leading-edge workshop presentations for its upcoming 2019 Pennsylvania Stormwater Conference on October 16 in Monroeville and November 14 in Malvern.  The deadline for proposals is June 14.

* Agriculture Invites Research Proposals On Spotted Lanternfly, Climate Adaptation, Nutrient Pollution Reduction, More

The Department of Agriculture published notice in the May 25 PA Bulletin inviting research proposals on 16 different topics related to production agriculture.  Proposals are due June 28.

* Susquehanna River Basin Commission Holds Business Meeting June 14

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission is scheduled to hold its next business meeting on June 14 at the Commission Office, 4423 North Front Street in Harrisburg starting at 9:00 a.m.

* DEP Our Commonwealth Blog: Black Fly Suppression Program Underway

By: Elizabeth Rementer, DEP Press Secretary

* Washington County Partners Tackle Illegal Bertha Mine Dump Site Cleanup

Two dozen people from Range Resources, the Washington County Conservation District, Washington & Jefferson College, and Independence Conservancy teamed up on the sunny morning of May 22 to tackle a chronic illegal dumping problem in the Harmon Creek Watershed.

* Keep PA Beautiful Receives Grant To Continue Cigarette Litter Prevention Program In State Parks

On May 21, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful announced it has received a a $10,000 grant from Keep America Beautiful to continue their work with the Keep America Beautiful Cigarette Litter Prevention Program, the nation’s largest program aimed at reducing cigarette litter.

* Op-Ed: House Republican Anti-Regulation Proposals Don’t Offer Common Sense, Science-Based Solutions, Only More Bureaucracy

By Dr. Richard Kaplan

* State Fire Commissioner Now Accepting Applications For Unconventional Gas Well Local Emergency Response Grants

On May 21, State Fire Commissioner Bruce Trego announced his Office is now accepting applications for Unconventional Gas Well Local Emergency Response Grants.  The deadline for applications is July 24.

* CFA Approves 2 Grants Totaling Over $676,000 To Extend Natural Gas Service In Crawford, Wayne Counties

On May 22, the Commonwealth Financing Authority announced the aware of 2 Pipeline Investment Program grants totaling $676,392 to extend natural gas service in Crawford and Wayne Counties.

* Green Philly Now Accepting Nominations For 4th Annual SustainPHL Awards

Nominations are now being accepted for the 4th Annual SustainPHL Awards hosted by Green Philly.  The deadline for applications is May 31.

* Range Resources Publishes First Corporate Sustainability Report, Working To Achieve Zero Emissions Across Operations

On May 22, Range Resources announced the release of its Corporate Sustainability Report, highlighting the Company’s efforts and commitments to responsibly develop natural gas. The report details Range’s goal of working to achieve zero emissions across company operations, and reveals its responsibly-produced “Sustainable Choice” gas.

* Research: Methane Emissions From Natural Gas Half The Carbon Footprint Of Underground Coal Mining In Pennsylvania

By Penn State News

* DCNR Conservation & Natural Resources Advisory Council To Hear Update On Implementing Climate Adaptation, Mitigation Plan May 29

DCNR’s Conservation and Natural Resources Advisory Council is scheduled to meet on May 29 to hear an update on implementation of DCNR’s Climate Adaptation Plan.

* DCNR Good Natured Blog: Canoeing & Kayaking PA's Scenic Waterways In The Age Of Climate Change

By: Jim Hyland, District Forester, Tioga State Forest

* Wildlands Conservancy Accepting Registrations For June 22-24 Lehigh River Sojourn; Other June Programs

The Lehigh River Sojourn is Wildlands Conservancy’s 32.6-mile guided paddling trip on the Lehigh River. We begin in the rolling Pocono Mountains and end in Easton's metro-wilderness.

* Brodhead Watershed Assn. June 15 Hike Thru A Waterfall At Spruce Mountain Trail, Monroe County

On June 15 the Brodhead Watershed Association will host a guided hike starting at Spruce Lake Retreat in Barrett Township in Monroe County starting 10:00 a.m. to Noon.

* Next South Mountain Speakers Series Event Highlights Local Craft Brewing June 11 In Shippensburg

On June 11, the South Mountain Partnership Speakers Series will highlight local craft brewing at an event at the Appalachian Brewing Company in Shippensburg starting at 6:30 p.m.

* Crowd Of 25,000 Supports Brandywine Conservancy At 89th Radnor Hunt Races For Open Space, Clean Water

On May 18, sunny skies and a gathering of around 25,000 spectators kicked off the 89th Radnor Hunt Races to support the open space and clean water programs of the Brandywine Conservancy in Chester County.

* Allegheny Land Trust Working To Protect One Of Largest Remaining Green Spaces In The South Hills Near Pittsburgh

On May 21, the Allegheny Land Trust announced it is working in cooperation with the municipality of Bethel Park and other partners to acquire and permanently conserve one of the largest remaining green spaces in the South Hills by the end of 2019.

* The American Chestnut Foundation Is Now Accepting Entries To Its 2019 Photo Contest

The American Chestnut Foundation is now accepting entries to its 2019 Photo Contest.  The deadline for submissions is September 2.

* PUC Names Seth A. Mendelsohn New Executive Director

On May 23, the Public Utility Commission announced the appointment of Seth A. Mendelsohn of Harrisburg, a senior government leader, business and leadership professor, and former corporate vice president, as Executive Director, effective May 28.

* Environmental NewsClips - All Topics

Here are NewsClips from around the state on all environmental topics, including General Environment, Budget, Marcellus Shale, Watershed Protection and much more.

* Public Participation Opportunities/Calendar Of Events

This section lists House and Senate Committee meetings, DEP and other public hearings and meetings and other interesting environmental events.

* 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.

* Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits

Here are highlights of actions taken by agencies on environmental regulations, technical guidance and permits.

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* Stories Invited - About PA Environment Digest

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

* Sponsor: 2019 PA/National Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference

PA Environment Digest is proud to be a sponsor of the 2019 PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation and National Abandoned Mine Lands Program Conference to be held in Pittsburgh on September 8-11.

* 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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