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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Nov. 26, 2012
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* DEP CAC: Permit Participation Policy To Be Revised, Watershed Bureau Sets Priorities

The Department of Environmental Protection notified the Citizens Advisory Council Tuesday it is in the process of updating the agency’s public participation policy on permit reviews.  Glenn Rider, Director of the Bureau of Conservation and Restoration, also provided an update on office’s priorities for the coming year.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule

Here are the Senate and House Calendars and Committee meetings showing bills of interest--

* Election, Retiring Legislators Means Change Of Key Environmental Committee Leadership

With the retirement of two Chairs of the Senate and House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee and a switch from the House to the Senate for a third Chair, the new session of the General Assembly will mean an almost complete turnover of environmental leadership in the Senate and House.

* Rep. Bud George, Democratic Chair Of House Environmental Committee, Retires

ong-time Democratic Chair of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee Rep. Bud George (D-Clearfield) will end 38 years of public service when the legislation session formally ends on November 30.

* Sen. Mary Jo White, Republican Chair Senate Environmental Committee, Retires

For more than a dozen years, Sen. Mary Jo White (R-Venango) served as Majority Chair of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, but her service in that capacity ends November 30 with the formal end of the legislative session.

* Penn State Extension Assists North Central Private Water Supply Owners

Penn State Extension worked with the Headwaters Resource Conservation and Development Council and the Clearfield Conservation District to implement a Colcum Foundation Grant in eight counties in North Central Pennsylvania.

* Nov. 28 Webinar To Focus On Septic System Management

The next Penn State Water Resources webinar will focus on the proper management of onlot septic systems starting at 1 p.m. on November 28.

* A River Again, The Story Of The Schuylkill River Project Now Available

The Delaware Riverkeeper Network Monday made available copies of A River Again, The Story of the Schuylkill River Project for download and in hardcopy suitable for holiday gift giving.

* Winter Holidays Celebration To Benefit Friends Of Wissahickon Dec. 1

Celebrate the winter holidays with the Friends of the Wissahickon at Valley Green Inn with Winter in the Wissahickon on December 1 from noon to 4 p.m.

* Delaware Estuary Partnership Looking For Photos Of Hurricane Impacts

The Partnership for the Delaware Estuary is currently working to assess the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.  To help in this assessment, Partnership staff is inviting the public to submit any photos, stories, videos or storm-related data you may have.

* Marcellus Shale Drilling Viewed As Both Positive, Negative By Pittsburghers

While most Pittsburgh citizens see Marcellus Shale drilling as a chance to give the local economy a boost, they also worry about the associated environmental and health risks, according to data released Monday by PittsburghTODAY and the University of Pittsburgh’s University Center for Social and Urban Research.

* DEP Corrects Email Address For Comments On PNDI Policy Revision

The Department of Environmental Protection published a notice inviting comments on proposed changes the policy for using the PA Natural Diversity Inventory during permit reviews and evaluations in the November 10 PA Bulletin.

* DEP Withdraws Change To Beneficial Use Of Oil & Gas Well Brine

The Department of Environmental Protection told the DEP Citizens Advisory Council Tuesday it would be withdrawing proposed revisions to General Permit WMGR064 published on September 17, 2011 (PA Bulletin page 5000) which would have allowed the use of natural gas well brines in certain circumstances for dust suppressant and as a stabilizer for unpaved secondary roads.

* Save The Date: PROP's 23rd Annual Recycling & Organics Conference July 24-26

The Professional Recyclers of Pennsylvania will hold their 23rd annual Recycling and Organics Conference in Wilkes-Barre on July 24-26.  Check the PROP website for upcoming details and early registration.

* Statewide Brownfields Conference Rescheduled For Dec. 10-12 In Allegheny County

The Department of Environmental Protection, in partnership with the Engineers Society of Western PA, invites community leaders, industry professionals and other interested stakeholders to a statewide brownfields conference from December 10 to 12 at the Doubletree Hotel in Monroeville, Allegheny County.

* Deadline Extended For FirstEnergy Ways 2 Save Electricity Video Contest For Schools

FirstEnergy power companies Met-Ed, Penelec and West Penn Power have extended the deadline for schools to submit Ways 2 Save Electricity Video Contest submissions to December 14 due to the disruption caused by Hurricane Sandy.

* FirstEnergy Energy Solutions Webinar: Wireless Lighting Control Solutions Nov. 28

On November 28 starting at 1:00 p.m. FirstEnergy will hold another in its series of webinars on energy efficiency, this one deals with wireless lighting control solutions.

* PPL Electric Rate To Compare Drops Effective Dec. 1

PPL Electric Utilities will change its generation service charge December 1 based on the latest costs to supply service to customers who do not choose an alternative supplier in the competitive power market.

* $26.5 Million Invested In Recreation, Community Revitalization Efforts

Gov. Tom Corbett Tuesday announced an investment of $26.5 million for 198 projects across Pennsylvania that will revitalize communities, create new recreational opportunities, and conserve natural resources.

* Applications For 2013 DCNR Community Conservation Partnership Grants Due April 10

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources will begin accepting applications for the 2013 round of Community Conservation Partnership Grants on January 9.  The deadline for applications is April 10.

* PA Wild Sustainable Economic Development Conference A Success

Several dozen residents from around the Pennsylvania Wilds gathered this month in St. Marys to jump start projects from their areas during the PA Wilds Planning Team’s 2nd regional conference on sustainable development.

* $4.7 Million In Improvements To Benjamin Rush State Park Celebrated

Bureau of State Parks Director David Kemmerer Monday joined other state and local officials to break ground on a $4.7 million improvement project at Benjamin Rush State Park in northeast Philadelphia.

* Heritage PA Unveils New Website

HeritagePA, an association of the 12 heritage areas in Pennsylvania, has launched its new website at that can provide assistance for all of the above and more.

* Creating The East Coast Greenway Lecture Rescheduled For Dec. 5

The Friends of the Wissahickon’s popular lecture series, Valley Talks, sponsored by Valley Green Bank, will feature Andy Hamilton of the East Coast Greenway Alliance, who will discuss this revolutionary trail system and how it enhances local communities and the region at large, on December 5.

* Friends Of The Wissahickon Hosts Public Meeting On Sustainable Trails Initiative Dec. 6

The Friends of the Wissahickon will host a public meeting to discuss progress to date on the Sustainable Trails Initiative upcoming STI projects, and new park signage for Wissahickon Valley Park on December 6 at 6 p.m. at Founders Hall, New Covenant Campus.

* New Multi-Year PA Fishing Licenses Available Dec. 1

With a new fishing season just around the corner, anglers can ready themselves for years to come by purchasing a multi-year fishing license, available for the first time this year from the Fish and Boat Commission.

* DCNR Opens State Forest Roads For Deer Hunting Season Monday

More accessible areas and expanded hunting opportunities await hunters when they head into state forestlands for Monday’s start of the traditional two-week white-tailed deer season.

* DEP Citizens Advisory Council Honors Eric Conrad For Service

The Citizens Advisory Council to the Department of Environmental Protection passed a special resolution Tuesday recognizing Eric Conrad for his service on the Council and wished him well in his battle with health issues.

* Help Wanted: PA Office Executive Director, Chesapeake Bay Foundation

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is seeking a qualified individual to fill the position of Pennsylvania Office Executive Director.

* 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 NewClips 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

No new regulations were published this week.  Pennsylvania Bulletin - November 24, 2012

* 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.

* 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:

* 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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