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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Crisci Associates, July 22, 2013
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* DEP Citizens Advisory Council Suggests Changes To Permit Public Participation Policy

On Tuesday the Citizens Advisory Council to DEP suggested important changes to the proposed Permit Review Public Participation Policy now out for public review until July 22.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule/Bills Introduced

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

* 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 Bills Moving

The following bills of interest saw action this week in the House and Senate--

* 3 Pennsylvania Farms Recognized With Clean Water Farm Awards

The PA Association of Conservation Districts Inc. Monday awarded the operators of three farms within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed the Clean Water Farm Award. The honor is annually awarded to farmers who manage their daily farm operations in an environmentally conscious manner that helps to protect Pennsylvania’s water quality.

* Sen. Rafferty Receives Conservation District Legislator Leadership Award

Traveling from various parts of the Commonwealth, nearly 200 individuals comprised of conservation district staff, state officials and legislative partners convened to discuss progress, needs, and issues in addressing conservation efforts in Pennsylvania at the 66th Joint Annual Conference in King of Prussia.

* REAP Farm Conservation Tax Credit Reduces Over Half Million Pounds Of Nutrients

The State Conservation Commission reported this week the Resource Enhancement and Protection Farm Conservation Tax Credit Program has reduced nitrogen discharges by 433,022 pounds, phosphorus by 19,178 pounds and sediment by 4,907 tons from cost-effective on-farm best management practices.

* Call For Presentations, Posters Keystone Coldwater Conference February 21-22

Proposals are now being accepted for presentations and posters for the 2014 Keystone Coldwater Conference, titled “Coldwater Resources: Current Practices in Conservation, Protection, and Restoration”   Proposals are due September 20.

* New Website, Public Meetings On Raccoon Creek Watershed Conservation Plan

Independence Conservancy has launched an all-new website highlighting its stewardship of the Raccoon Creek Watershed in Western Pennsylvania.  The website also offers the public a new opportunity to review and comment on the Raccoon Creek Watershed Conservation Plan.

* 10th West Branch Susquehanna River Community Tire Removal Event July 27

Clinton County CleanScapes and its partners will hold the 10th Annual West Branch Susquehanna River Community Tire Removal Project, Woodward Township, Clinton County on July 27. 

* Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy Seeks Award Nominations

Ensuring that community efforts to protect and improve the local environment are publicly acknowledged, the Perkiomen Watershed Conservancy in Montgomery County is looking for a few good people, projects and organizations to recognize with an Environmental Award

* Rain Barrels Available At July 20 Wormleysburg River Day

The Harrisburg Rain Barrel Coalition will be on site July 20 at the Wormleysburg River Day festival on Front Street, across the river from Harrisburg, to help educate area residents about the benefits of using rain barrels to collect rainwater from rooftops.

* Penn State: New Tool For Teaching Youth About Safe Drinking Water

Check out the newest addition to our youth water education resources, an interactive fact sheet about safe drinking water titled “The Water We Drink.”

* Corbett Announces $84 Million Investment In Water Infrastructure Projects In 9 Counties

Gov. Corbett Tuesday announced the investment of $84 million in 11 drinking water and wastewater projects in 9 counties through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority.

* DEP Accepting Nominations For Regional Act 220 Water Resource Advisory Committees

Lisa Daniels, Director of DEP’s Bureau of Safe Drinking Water, this week told the DEP Citizens Advisory Council the agency is now accepting nominations for its six regional water resource advisory committees created under Act 220 of 2002.

* Wildlands Conservancy Unveils New Website

The Wildlands Conservancy of the Lehigh Valley unveiled its new website this week to provide the public and its supporters with more information on its activities, special events and programs, conservation and watershed restoration activities.  Click Here to give it a whirl.

* Kevin Abbey Joins ClearWater Conservancy As Land Conservation Manager

Kevin Abbey of Ferguson Township has joined State College–based ClearWater Conservancy as its Land Conservation Manager.

* EPA Fines XTO Energy For Lycoming County Drilling-Related Spills

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Justice Thursday announced a settlement with XTO Energy Inc., a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation, to resolve an alleged violation of the Clean Water Act related to the discharge of wastewater from XTO’s Penn Township, Lycoming County, Pa. facility used for the storage of wastewater generated by natural gas exploration, commonly known as fracking, and production.

* Disaster Assistance Approved For Three Pennsylvania Counties

Gov. Tom Corbett Wednesday announced the U.S. Small Business Administration approved his request to declare to declare the counties of Jefferson, Clearfield, and Fayette a disaster area after flooding in Western Pennsylvania from weather events starting June 27.

* Weis Markets Receives Dupont Award For Packaging Innovation

Weis Markets announced recently it has received the Silver Award in the 25th DuPont Awards for Packaging Innovation.

* Pittsburgh Launches Green Up Grow Up Initiative

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl Tuesday, joined by volunteers and community leaders in Manchester, launched the new “Green Up to Grow Up” program, an expansion of his successful Green Up Pittsburgh and Edible Gardens initiatives.

* PUC: Beat The Heat And Conserve Energy

It’s hot and only getting hotter.  With high temperatures expected to continue through the week, the Public Utility Commission Tuesday reminds consumers to conserve energy during days with severe heat and humidity.

* Keystone HELP Partners Win Energy Financing Award

The PA Keystone Home Energy Loan Program has figured prominently in another national energy award, as the Council of Development Finance Agencies Wednesday named Bostonia Partners as the winner of the 2013 CDFA Excellence in Energy Finance Award.

* Coca-Cola, World Wildlife Fund Expand Partnership On Sustainability

The Coca-Cola Company and World Wildlife Fund are working to advance the Coca-Cola system’s sustainability stewardship with the announcement of new, bold global environmental goals and an expanded global partnership.

* Prowl The Sproul State Forest Hiking Activities Set For July 19-21

Hikers and other visitors are invited to sample the rugged beauty of the Sproul State Forest when the three-day "Prowl the Sproul" series of hikes begins on July 19.

* North Country Trail Conference & Trailfest August 12-17

Registration is now open for the North Country Trail Conference and Trailfest on August 12-17 to be held at Slippery Rock University.  Click Here for all the details.

* Grey Towers Hosts Festival Of Wood August 3-4

Grey Towers, home of Gifford Pinchot, the first Chief of the U.S. Forest Service and Governor of Pennsylvania, will host the 9th Annual Festival of Wood on August 3-4 in Milford, Pike County.

* After Pleas By Conservation Groups, More Cold Water Released To Upper Delaware

After pleas by sportsmen and conservation groups, the Upper Delaware River got a much-needed pulse of cold water beginning Wednesday morning to refresh the fragile ecosystem during a stretch of above-average temperatures.

* Fish Commission Elects New Officers, Takes Other Actions At Quarterly Meeting

At its quarterly business meeting held Tuesday, the Fish and Boat Commission elected new officers; authorized the acquisition of access areas in two counties; approved a lease of its access areas in Philadelphia County; and proposed regulation changes which would allow anglers to use more than three hooks on a single fishing line and would permit anglers to fish with a resident license after they move to another state.

* 11th Anniversary Quecreek Mine Rescue July 27

The 11th anniversary of the Quecreek Mine Rescue in Somerset County will be held on July 27 starting at 10:00 a.m. at the Arnold Farm, site of the 2002 rescue operations.

* DEP Opportunity To Bid On Projects In Clearfield, Jefferson, Potter, Luzerne Counties

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice of an opportunity to bid on abandoned mine reclamation projects in Clearfield County, Luzerne County and projects plugging abandoned oil and gas wells in Potter County and Jefferson County.

* 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 Clips

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

The Environmental Quality Board published notice of final regulations related to the Triennial Review of Water Quality Standards.

* 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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