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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Crisci Associates, Nov. 11, 2013
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* House Committee To Consider Changes To Endangered Species Listing Process Nov. 13

The House Game and Fisheries Committee is scheduled to meet on November 13 to consider House Bill 1576 (Pyle-R-Armstrong) which would make fundamental changes in the way threatened and endangered species are listed and considered during the environmental permit review process as well as changes to the process for listing wild trout streams.

* PA Chamber: Endangered Species Bill Balances Protection, Economic Development

The Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry said House Bill 1576 (Pyle-R-Armstrong) that would submit the endangered and threatened species designation and evaluation process to review by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission is a good-government bill that appropriately balances species management and protection with economic development though a more open and transparent process.

* Rep. Vitali: Bill Poised To Reduce Protection For PA’s Endangered Species

Lawmakers, sportsmen and environmental groups warned a bill-- House Bill 1576 (Pyle-R- Armstrong) --  poised for a vote November 13 would damage the Commonwealth's ecosystem and threaten millions of dollars in federal funding, according to Rep. Greg Vitali (D-Delaware), Minority Chair of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee.

* 18 Year Old Petitioner Will Get Opportunity To Push Climate Change Rule Before EQB

On November 19 the Environmental Quality Board will consider a rulemaking petition submitted by 18 year old Ashley Funk from Mount Pleasant, Pa that asks the Board to adopted a state regulation requiring a 6 percent reduction in baseline carbon dioxide emissions in Pennsylvania by 2050.

* PA River, Streams Assessments On Nov. 19 DEP Citizens Advisory Council Agenda

The DEP Citizens Advisory Council meets on November 19 and will hear a presentation on the 2008-09 National River and Stream Assessment from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Environmental Protection’s 2012 Water Quality Assessment Report which shows somewhat different findings.

* 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, 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--

* General Assembly Launches New Website On Election Day

A completely revamped version of the General Assembly’s website was launched Tuesday to give the public better access to a wide array of legislative information, including bill text and history, votes in the Senate and the House, committee meetings and votes, and much more, legislative leaders announced.

* American Farmland Trust: Federal Farm Bill Agricultural Easement Funding At Risk

Congressional Conferees began work last week on resolving differences between the Senate and House provisions in the federal Farm Bill, but now the American Farmland Trust has learned funding for agricultural land easements may be at risk and AFT is urging all Pennsylvania groups and citizens with an interest in this issue to contact Congressman Glenn Thompson who represents the 5th District which stretches from Bellefonte to Erie.

* Hearing On Dec. 16 For Pork Farm NPDES Permit In Columbia County

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting and hearing on December 16, to discuss a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Concentrated Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) permit application submitted by Joel Knoebel for his existing Cleveland Pork Farm in Cleveland Township, Columbia County.

* Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA Hosts Tree Plantings In Harrisburg Nov. 9

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA is hosting tree plantings at two locations in Harrisburg—

* November Issue Of Chesapeake Bay Currents Now Available

The Chesapeake Bay Program this week published the November issue of Chesapeake Bay Currents, an update on Bay Program activities in each of the Bay states.  Click Here to read this month’s issue.

* Conemaugh Valley Conservancy, Partners Complete Beaverdam Run Watershed Study

This week the Conemaugh Valley Conservancy and its partners announced the completion of the Beaverdam Run Watershed Study to document the current water quality status of the stream and its tributaries.

* Penn State Seeking Volunteers For Master Well Owner Program

Pennsylvania is home to over one million private water wells and springs but it is one of the few states that do not provide statewide regulations to protect these rural drinking water supplies. As a result, homeowners using a private well or spring must understand proper water supply management practices to ensure safe drinking water for their family.

* Video: All About Your Drinking Water Well

You turn the faucet on and there's water; but where does it really come from? Pennsylvania has over a million individual drinking water wells which need to be drilled right and kept clean. Join the PA Geologic Survey's Gary Fleeger as he steps us through how a well is drilled and what to look for to keep your water source in good shape.

* Water Resources Education Network November Water Policy News Available

The November issue of Water Policy News from the PA League of Women Voters Water Resources Education Network is now available.  It includes stories about the 2014 round of WREN grants, a schedule of capacity building webinars and much more.  Click Here to read a copy.  Click Here to sign up for your own copy.

* PA American Water Completes $18 Million Dam Rehabilitation In Butler County

Pennsylvania American Water Friday announced the completion of the approximately $18 million rehabilitation of its Thorn Run and Lake Oneida Dams in Oakland Township, Butler County.

* Drilling Industry Starts Own Study Of Radioactivity Levels In Shale Operations

The Marcellus Shale Coalition and the PA Independent Oil and Gas Association Monday announced their joint efforts to conduct an extensive study of Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM) and Technologically Enhanced NORM (TENORM) in shale production-related activities.

* PA League Of Women Voters Shale Drilling & Public Health Conference Nov. 23

The PA League of Women Voters is hosting Shale Drilling and Public Health: A Day of Discovery Conference November 23 at the Heinz History Center, 1212 Smallman St., Pittsburgh from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

* $3M In Alternative Fuel Vehicle Grants Awarded, New Round Opening, Webinar Set

The Corbett Administration Thursday awarded more than $3 million in Alternative Fuel Incentive Grants to 33 companies, counties and organizations making the switch to compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, or propane for medium to light-weight fleet vehicles.

* Aqua Pennsylvania Receives Grant For Expansion Of Natural Gas Vehicle Fleet

Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc. Thursday announced it received a grant of $86,812 from the Department of Environmental Protection. The Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant will be applied to the purchase of 14 new vans, which will run on clean-burning compressed natural gas.

* PA Coal Alliance Calls On EPA For Flexibility In Setting Carbon Emission Standards

The Pennsylvania Coal Alliance Friday called for federal regulators to allow states some flexibility in developing emission standards in order to strike an appropriate balance between environmental improvements and economic concerns.

* PA Small Business Federation Warns Of Regulatory Overreach On Ozone Standards

Citing potential changes to ground level ozone standards as just one looming example, Kevin Shivers, the Pennsylvania Executive State Director for the National Federation of Independent Business, warned an audience of small-business owners in Fogelsville, Lehigh County, about how the outdated federal regulatory process is negatively impacting the state’s economy.

* Philadelphia EPA Exhibit Shows How To Keep Schools Green, Healthy

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is encouraging healthy school environments in a new exhibit "Lessons for a Green and Healthy School," a walk-through classroom exhibit that demonstrates techniques to create a green and healthy school environment.

* DEP Webinar On New Online Public Participation Center Nov. 15

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a webinar November 15 starting at 9:30 to introduce the public to its new online Public Participation Center, according to Hayley Book, Director of DEP’s Policy Office.

* Bottle Works Arts Center, 7 Other Communities In Keep PA Beautiful’s Fresh Paint Days

Eight communities in Pennsylvania are a little more beautiful thanks to the 2013 Fresh Paint Days Program sponsored by Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful with support from BEHR and The Home Depot.

* Registration Open For Annual Statewide Brownfields Conference Dec. 9-11

The Department of Environmental Protection Monday reminded private developers, economic development professionals and government officials to register for the annual Pennsylvania Brownfields Conference, to be held December 9-11, at the Radisson Valley Forge Hotel, King of Prussia.

* DEP Fines Ohio Company $12,000 For Illegal Open Burning In Lycoming County

The Department of Environmental Protection Thursday announced it has fined Welded Construction LP of Perrysburg, Ohio, $12,000 for illegally burning wood mats on two occasions in August at its facility in Wolf Township, Lycoming County.

* PA Economic Development Association Schedules Upcoming Webinars

The PA Economic Development Association has scheduled two webinars in the coming months-- December 11: Financing and the Anatomy of a Deal starting at 2:00; and January 29: Workforce Development, Best Practices in Partnerships also at 2:00.  For information on this and other programs, visit the PEDA website.

* SRBC Monitoring Confirms Rock Snot In Pine Creek, Potter County

Monitoring staff at the Susquehanna River Basin Commission have documented the second occurrence of the aquatic invasive species Didymosphenia geminata (didymo or “rock snot”) in the Susquehanna basin in the West Branch of Pine Creek, Potter County on October 16.

* Audubon, Toyota Awards TogetherGreen Grants, $20,000 To PA Projects

Toyota TogetherGreen, a conservation initiative of the National Audubon Society and Toyota, Wednesday announced new grants of more than $1.3 million to 70 innovative and diverse conservation projects nationwide, including two grants totalling $20,000 in Pennsylvania--

* PA Horticultural Society Tree Tender Planting Events Set For Southeast

The PA Horticultural Society Tree Tenders will plant about 900 trees in more than 40 Philadelphia neighborhoods and in the surrounding counties during the weekend of November 23 & 24. New volunteers are welcome!

* DCNR: Enjoy State Parks And Forests On Veterans Day Holiday Weekend

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Acting Secretary Ellen Ferretti Wednesday invited Pennsylvanians to enjoy the 2.5 million acres of state park and forest lands available for outdoor enjoyment on the upcoming extended Veterans Day holiday weekend.

* Friends Of The Wissahickon: Start Your Holidays With Friends Dec. 7

Start the holidays right with the Friends of the Wissahickon at Valley Green Inn on December 7  when they host Winter in the Wissahickon in Montgomery County.

* Pennsylvania Wilds November Artisan Trail e-News Now Available

The November issue of Artisan Trail e-News is now available from the Pennsylvania Wilds Program.

* DCNR Accepting Nominations For Trails Advisory Committee

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is accepting nominations through December 1 for seven members of the Pennsylvania Trails Advisory Committee.

* PennFuture Announces Cindy Dunn As New President

PennFuture Monday announced the appointment of Cindy Adams Dunn as president and CEO of the statewide environmental advocacy organization after a four-month national search.

* 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

No new regulations were published this week. Pennsylvania Bulletin - November 9, 2013

* 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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