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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
February 17, 2020 Issue# 816
* DEP Climate Committee To Hear Update On Climate Impact Assessment Focused On Achieving Water Quality Cleanup Goals, Infrastructure, Livestock Production Feb. 25

DEP’s Climate Change Advisory Committee is scheduled to meet on February 25 to hear an update from Penn State on Pennsylvania’s Climate Change Impact Assessment focused on impacts to infrastructure, achieving water quality cleanup goals and livestock production.

* Penn’s Stewards: Climate Change: Managing Pennsylvania's Greatest Environmental Crisis

By Greg Czarnecki, Director, DCNR Applied Climate Science

* Senate Deliberately Delaying Sending Bill Providing Unlimited Subsidies For Using Natural Gas In Manufacturing To Governor

On February 4, the Senate and House took final action on House Bill 1100 (Kaufer-R-Luzerne) which would provide unlimited taxpayer-funded subsidies for natural gas use in manufacturing through a new tax credit. 

* Op-Ed: PA Legislators Should Stop Giving Tax Breaks To Fossil Fuel Industry

By Jacquelyn Bonomo, PennFuture

* EQB Sets 3 Public Hearings On Proposed Changes To Land Recycling Program Regulations Setting First PFOS/PFOA/PFAS Cleanup Standards

The Environmental Quality Board published notice in the February 15 PA Bulletin of proposed changes to Land Recycling Program regulations.

* EPA, NFWF Announce $2.4 Million For Projects To Improve PA Streams In Chesapeake Bay Watershed

On February 12, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced $2.4 million in grant funding for 14 projects that will help improve local waters in Pennsylvania and contribute to the restoration of the Chesapeake Bay.

* NFWF Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund Accepting Applications For Small Watershed Grants

The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund is now accepting applications for Small Watershed Grants.  The deadline for pre-proposals is April 14.

* Bay Journal: Environmentalists, Shore Officials Oppose Conowingo Dam Settlement

By Timothy B. Wheeler, Chesapeake Bay Journal

* PA Assn. Of Conservation Districts Releases Highlights Of Conservation District Accomplishments in 2019

The PA Association of Conservation Districts released its Highlights of Conservation District Activities in 2019 which provides a district-by-district summary of accomplishments during last year.

* Delaware County Student Winner In National Assn. Of Conservation Districts Poster Contest

On February 10, the National Association of Conservation Districts, in partnership with the NACD Auxiliary, announced the winners of the 2019 Photo Contest and 2019 Poster Contest.

* National Assn. Of Conservation Districts Awards Grants To 2 Pennsylvania Districts

On February 10, the National Association of Conservation Districts announced $1 million in urban agriculture conservation funding for 21 conservation districts across 13 states.

* Call For Nominations: 2020 Leopold Farm Conservation Award And $10,000 Prize

The Sand County Foundation, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, is now accepting nominations for the 2020 Pennsylvania Leopold Conservation Award and its $10,000 prize to a farmer or forester to recognize voluntary conservation practices on private working lands.

* Gov. Wolf To Make Available $1.74 Million PennVEST Grant To Test Schools, Child Care Centers For Lead In Drinking Water

On February 13, Gov. Tom Wolf announced $1.74 million in PA Investment Infrastructure Authority funding will be made available for a grant program to test for lead in drinking water at schools and child care centers.

* Keep PA Beautiful: 12,610 PA International Coastal Cleanup Volunteers Remove 488,135 Pounds Of Trash, Tires Last Fall

On February 12, Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful reported 12,610 volunteers removed 488,135 pounds of trash and tires from watersheds and waterways across the state during 382 events as part of the fall International Coastal Cleanup.

* DCNR Good Natured Blog: Love Is In The Air, Even For Pennsylvania Wildlife

By Rebecca Bowen, Ecological Services Section Chief

* PA Capitol Report: Top Senate Republican Joins Top House Republican In Not Seeking Re-Election

[Because In Politics, Everything Is Connected To Everything Else] On February 12, Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) announced he will join House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) in not seeking re-election and leave the General Assembly at the end of his term in November.

* Bills On Governor's Desk

The following bills were given final approval by the Senate and House and are now on the Governor's desk for action--

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule

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--

* 38 Groups, More Than 5,700 Citizens Call On Speaker Turzai To Remove House Environmental Committee Chair Daryl Metcalfe

On February 11, the Better Path Coalition submitted a petition with more than 5,700 signatures to Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny), along with a letter signed by 38 organizations calling for the removal of Rep. Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) as Majority Chair of the House Environmental Committee because of his unabashed climate denial, obstructionism, and unprofessional behavior.

* Sen. Santarsiero: Health, DEP Warnings Of Health Risks From Naturally Occurring Asbestos Justify Permanent Closure Of Rockhill Quarry, Bucks County

On February 14, Sen. Steve Santarsiero (D-Bucks) said a state official’s warning of health risks from asbestos at Rockhill Quarry in Bucks County prompted him to call for the permanent closure of the quarry and a meeting of state health and environmental officials as soon as possible in order to protect East Rockhill residents.

* Urge Your Member of Congress To Support Bipartisan Legislation With Dedicated Fish & Wildlife Conservation Funding

The bipartisan H.R. 3742 -- Recovering America’s Wildlife Act-- is now awaiting a vote in the U.S. House after a strong 26 to 6 vote reporting it out of the House Natural Resources Committee in December.

* Congressional House Republicans, Climate Leadership Business Council Release Climate Proposals

On February 11, U.S. House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Garret Graves (R-LA), Greg Walden (R-OR), Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), David Schweikert (R-AZ), David McKinley (R-WV), Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) and Bruce Westerman (R-AR) released several bills addressing climate change.

* President Trump’s FY 2021 Budget Proposal Cuts Environmental Funding For Program Critical To PA, Again

On February 11, President Trump released his proposed FY 2021 federal budget that contains cuts to environmental and natural resources programs critical to Pennsylvania of from 30 to 100 percent.

* DEP Invites Comments On 5 TMDL Plans For Watersheds In Centre, Perry, Snyder, Union Counties

The Department of Environmental Protection invites comments on five Total Maximum Daily Load watershed plans for watersheds in Centre, Perry, Snyder and Union counties.

* Citizen Scientists May Be An Untapped Resource For Water Quality Improvement

By Matt Swayne, Penn State News

* PA Organization For Watersheds & Rivers March 3 Webinar On General Liability Insurance Program

The PA Organization for Watersheds and Rivers will host a March 3 webinar on POWR's General Liability Insurance Program from Noon to 1:00 p.m.

* Conservation Finance Network Webinar: March 2 - Watershed Finance Models, Comparing Structure, Scalability, Scope

The Conservation Finance Network will host a webinar on March 2 on Watershed Finance Models - Comparing Structure, Scalability and Scope from Noon to 1:00 p.m.

* Loyalhanna Watershed Assn., Westmoreland County, Partners Host Keeping Farmers On The Land Workshop Feb. 25

The Loyalhanna Watershed Association, Westmoreland County Agricultural Land Preservation and Farm and Environmental Renewal Network of Ligonier will host a Keeping Farmers On The Land Workshop at the Watershed Farm, 6 Old Lincoln Highway West in Ligonier from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

* PA Assn. For Sustainable Agriculture March 3 Insights On Common Soil Health Challenges Webinar

The PA Association for Sustainable Agriculture will hold another in its series of Soil Health Benchmarks Programs - Insights On Common Soil Health Webinar on March 3 from Noon to 2:00 p.m.

* DEP Northcentral Region Hosts DEP Connects With Agriculture Program Feb. 24 In Williamsport

The DEP Northcentral Regional Office will host a DEP Connects With Agriculture Program  on February 24 from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. in Williamsport.  Participants will have the opportunity to--

* DEP Starts Work To Extinguish Dolph Mine Fire, Reclaim Abandoned Mine In Lackawanna County

On February 12, the Department of Environmental Protection announced work to extinguish the 14-year old Dolph Mine Fire in Olyphant, Lackawanna County will begin this spring. The project will eliminate a public health hazard that contributes to air pollution in the area.

* Ed Wytovich To Be Guest Speaker At Western Pocono Trout Unlimited Feb. 25 In Luzerne County

Ed Wytovich, a grassroots leader involved in the cleanup of many abandoned mine contaminated streams, will be the guest speaker at the Western Pocono Chapter of Trout Unlimited meeting February 25 at the White Haven Library in White Haven, Luzerne County starting at 7:00 p.m..

* Interfaith Dinner To Focus On The Water We Share Feb. 20 In Allentown

e Lehigh Dialogue Center is partnering with the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter, the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and the Lehigh Conference of Churches for the 16th Annual Friendship Dinner, a community discussion of “The Water We Share,” on February 20, from 5:30 to 8:00 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley in Allentown.

* PA American Water Seeking Entries For Protect Our Watersheds Student Art Contest

On February 14, PA American Water announced entries are being accepted for its 18th Annual Protect Our Watersheds Student Art Contest.  The deadline for entries is April 10.

* Stream Of Learning College Scholarship Applications Now Being Accepted By PA American Water

On February 14, PA American Water announced applications are being accepted for its 2020 Stream of Learning Scholarship Program to provide financial assistance to high school seniors planning to pursue careers in the water and wastewater industry.   The deadline for applications is April 3.

* Estuary News Now Available From Partnership For The Delaware Estuary

The Winter issue of Estuary News is now available from the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary featuring articles on--

* Gov. Wolf Announces $23.8 Million In Funding To Help Fix 10 Fish & Boat Commission High-Hazard Dams

On February 14, Gov. Tom Wolf announced the release of $23.8 million in Capital Budget funding for a comprehensive, multi-year $43.5 million plan to repair 10 hazardous dams managed by the Fish and Boat Commission.

* Monroe County Waste Authority, Pocono Heritage Land Trust Hold First Of Several Composting Basics Workshops March 14

The Monroe County Municipal Waste Management Authority and Pocono Heritage Land Trust are co-sponsoring a Backyard Composting Basics Workshop on March 14 at the Brodhead Creek Heritage Center, 1539 Cherry Lane in East Stroudsburg from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m.

* PRC To Hold 23 Backyard Composting, Rain Barrel & Recycling Workshops In Allegheny County

On February 13, the PA Resources Council announced its Spring schedule of 23 backyard composting, rain barrel and recycling workshops to be held in Allegheny County.

* Op-Ed: Existing Commercial Sites vs. Greenfields - Preserving The Environment And Economic Growth

By Mike Molesevich, Environmental Consultant

* DEP Sets Hearings [If Needed] On RACT II Air Quality Plans For 6 Facilities In Beaver, Delaware, Montgomery, Westmoreland Counties

The Department of Environmental Protection has scheduled hearings [if needed] on RACT II Air Quality Plans for six facilities in Beaver, Delaware, Montgomery and Westmoreland counties.

* Feature: From The Ground Up - Energy Resilience Begins With Our Buildings

By Cherie Winner, Penn State News

* PA Anthracite Section Of Society Of Mining Engineers Accepting Applications For Student Scholarship

The PA-Anthracite Section of Society of Mining Engineers/AIME is now accepting applications for the John Kaminski Memorial Scholarships for mining-related engineering or science majors for Pennsylvania students.  The deadline for applications is May 15.

* Reminder: PA Recreation and Park Society Accepting Mini-Grant Applications From GetOutdoors PA Partners Thru Feb. 28

The PA Recreation and Park Society is accepting applications for Mini-Grants from GetOutdoors PA Partners through February 28.

* DCNR Announces More State Park Campsites Allowing Pets In 2021

On February 13, Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn announced more campsites will be open to pets when they visit Pennsylvania state parks next year.

* Pennsylvania Wilds Successes Showcased In New DCNR Conservation Landscape Report

Achievements made in the Pennsylvania Wilds, a 13-county region designated as a Conservation Landscape was recently highlighted in a report by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

* Registration Open For Sinnemahone Triple Crown Events- Canoe & Kayak, Gravel Bike And Ultra Trail Run In Cameron County

On February 11, the Cameron County Chamber of Commerce announced registrations are now being accepted for the 2020 Sinnemahone Triple Crown races-- April 4 - Canoe & Kayak, September 25 - Gravel Bike Race and October 17 Ultra Trail Run.

* Register Now! Central PA Conservancy Ironmasters Challenge April 26, Cumberland County

The Central PA Conservancy and Susquehanna Appalachian Trail Club invite you to register for the 2020 Ironmasters Challenge on April 26 starting at Pine Grove Furnace State Park in Cumberland County.

* Feb. 14 Take Five Fridays With Pam, PA Parks & Forests Foundation

The February 14 Take Five Fridays With Pam is now available from the PA Parks and Forests Foundation featuring articles on--

* Spring Penn’s Stewards Newsletter Now Available From PA Parks & Forests Foundation

The Spring Penn’s Stewards newsletter is now available from the PA Parks & Forests Foundation featuring articles on--

* Delaware Highlands Conservancy: Settlers Hospitality Raises Over $14,800 For Conservation

On February 13, representatives from Settlers Hospitality properties presented the Delaware Highlands Conservancy with a check for $14,852 for funds collected in 2019 through the Conservancy’s Green Lodging Partnership Program.

* Pocono Heritage Land Trust Hosts Winter Tree & Wild Plant Identification Program Feb. 23, Monroe County

Join local naturalist and long time Pocono Heritage Land Trust and Brodhead Watershed Association volunteer, Don Miller on February 23 for a talk and walk at Stroud Township’s ForEvergreen Nature Preserve and Brodhead Creek Heritage Center to observe and identify trees and wild plants as they wait out winter’s wrath for the inevitable return of spring.

* Allegheny Land Trust Permanently Protects Over 40 Acres Of Woodlands In Allegheny County

On February 10, Allegheny Land Trust announced it will finalize the acquisition of 40.5 acres of woodlands in Bethel Park in Allegheny County before March 31.

* Deadline Extended To March 6 To Apply For State Wildlife Grant Program

On February 14, the Fish and Boat Commission announced the deadline has been extended to March 6 to apply for State Wildlife Grants.

* Berks Nature Awarded Grant To Provide Fishing Programs For Hispanic Families

On February 14, the Fish and Boat Commission announced Berks Nature, a nonprofit conservation organization serving Berks County, has been awarded a $10,000 grant that will be used to provide fishing-related programs for Hispanic families.

* What Conservation Corridors & Habitat Connectivity Could Mean For PA Wildlife, Biodiversity

By Anthony Bastian, Sally Ann Sims and Deborah Woodard, Pennsylvania Habitat Connectivity

* Tiadaghton Audubon Presents Program On Bird Conservation For Landowners Feb. 19 At The High School In Wellsboro, Tioga County

[As reported by] The Tiadaghton Audubon Society presents a bird conservation program February 19 at the Wellsboro Area High School, 225 Nichols Street in Wellsboro, Tioga County starting at 7:00 p.m.

* Fellow Wanted: Heritage Conservancy 2020 Delaware River Watershed Fellowship

The Heritage Conservancy, a member of the Alliance for Watershed Education of the Delaware River, is seeking candidates for a Delaware River Watershed Fellow position. The deadline for applications is April 15.

* Intern Wanted: Trout Unlimited Biological Field Intern, Lock Haven

Trout Unlimited's PA Coldwater Habitat Restoration Program is seeking qualified candidates to fill a Biological Field Intern position based in Lock Haven, Clinton County.  The deadline for applications is March 8.

* Environment & Energy NewsClips

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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* Keystone Coldwater Conference Feb. 28-29 In State College

The PA Environment Digest is a proud sponsor of the 2020 Keystone Coldwater Conference February 28-29 in State College.  Registration is now openClick Here for more.

* Riparian Forest Buffer Summit March 11-12 In Altoona

The PA Environment Digest is a proud sponsor of the 2020 Riparian Forest Buffer Summit March 11 - 12 in Altoona.  Registration is now openClick Here for more.

* PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference June 24-25 In State College

The PA Environment Digest is a proud sponsor of the 2020 PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference June 24-25 in State College.  Click Here for more - Call For Presentations.

* 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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