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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Crisci Associates, July 28, 2014
* Audit: Rapid Shale Gas Development Outpaced DEP’s Ability To Oversee Drilling

Auditor General Eugene DePasquale Tuesday said an audit shows the meteoric growth of the shale gas industry since 2003 caught the Department of Environmental Protection unprepared to effectively administer laws and regulations to protect drinking water and unable to efficiently respond to citizen complaints.

* DEP: Auditor General Report Focuses On Recordkeeping, Water Kept Safe

The Auditor General's Office Tuesday released the Special Audit of DEP's Performance in Monitoring Potential Impact to Water Quality from Shale Gas Development for the period 2009 through 2012, finding no instances where DEP failed to protect public health, safety or the environment with respect to unconventional gas drilling activities.

* Groups React To Auditor General’s Report On Marcellus Shale Drilling Regulation

A number of groups issued statements in reaction to the Auditor General’s report Tuesday on regulating Marcellus Shale drilling by DEP.  Here is a sampling of those statements.

* 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--

* 2014 Ohio River Watershed Celebration Sept. 18 At North Park, Allegheny County

The 2014 Ohio River Watershed Celebration will be held on September 18 at North Park, Allegheny County.  This year’s theme is-- Connected Through Our Streams, The Pine Creek Experience.

* 5 Pennsylvania Farms Receive Clean Water Farm Awards

The PA Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. awarded the operators of five farms with the Clean Water Farm Award.

* Post-Gazette: 209 Water Supplies Damaged By Drilling Since Late 2007

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported information from the Department of Environmental Protection Tuesday which shows 209 water supplies were affected by drilling since the end of 2007.

* Hearing On Proposed Changes To Natural Gas Compressor Station In Milford Aug. 18

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public hearing on August 18, to discuss the Air Quality Plan Approval application submitted by Columbia Gas Transmission, LLC to modify their existing natural gas compressor station in Milford, Pike County.

* Ben Franklin Shale Gas Innovation Awards Applications Due Aug. 1

The Ben Franklin Partnership Shale Gas Innovation Center is now accepting applications for the  2014 Shale Gas Innovation Contest until August 1.  Contest winners will be announced in September.

* Op-Ed: State Is Protecting Public’s Health On Shale Matters

By Michael Wolf, Secretary of Health

* PennVEST Invests $81.5 Million In Water Infrastructure Projects In 11 Counties

Gov. Tom Corbett Tuesday announced the investment of $81.5 million in 14 non-point source, drinking water and wastewater projects across 11 counties through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority.

* Keep Bedford County Beautiful Receives Grant From REI

Keep Bedford County Beautiful has received a stewardship grant award of $5,000 from Recreation Equipment Inc. The grant money will be used to assist in stewardship efforts along the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River and will include tire recycling, roll-off container rental, trash hauling, landfill fees, cleanup supplies and equipment, and volunteer support. 

* Clinton County CleanScapes Bald Eagle Creek Cleanups July 26, Sept. 6

Clinton County CleanScapes will hold a cleanup event on July 26 on Bald Eagle Creek and a second cleanup partnering with students from Lock Haven University students on September 6.

* DEP: Settlement With Pittsburgh Contractor, Associated Builders, Contractors

The Department of Environmental Protection Tuesday said it has reached an innovative settlement with Associated Builders and Contractors of Western Pennsylvania (ABC) and R. A. Glancy and Sons, Inc. (Glancy) regarding violations of the Pennsylvania Clean Streams Law.

* Aug. 26 Public Meeting, Hearing On Lock Haven Laundry Property Cleanup

The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting and public hearing to discuss plans to clean up solvent contamination at the former Lock Haven Laundry property on Bellefonte Avenue in Clinton County.

* Corbett Signs Bill Again To Eliminate Low-RVP Gasoline In Pittsburgh, No Details Offered

Gov. Tom Corbett Friday ceremonially signed Senate Bill 1037 (Vogel-R-Beaver)-- Act 50 of 2014-- which will help lower gas prices for consumers in a seven-county greater Pittsburgh area eventually when the requirement for 7.8 RVP summer gasoline is eliminated.

* State Awards $3M Grant For Solar Energy Array For Urban Outfitters, Lancaster

Gov. Tom Corbett Thursday announced the award of a $3 million Economic Growth Initiative grant to Urban Outfitters, Inc. to install a 3 megawatt solar array on the roof of its new direct-to-consumer fulfillment center in Salisbury Township, Lancaster County.

* DEP Extends Alternative Fuel Vehicle Rebate Program To Dec. 31

The Department of Environmental Protection Thursday announced the extension of the Alternative Fuel Vehicle Rebate Program, which will continue to provide $2,000 rebates for 500 additional large-battery system plug-in hybrid electric and battery-electric vehicles, or until December 31.

* On-Farm Renewable Energy Highlight Of Ag Progress Days Aug. 12-14

Energy conservation regulation, shale energy development and on-farm renewable energy sources will be featured at Ag Progress Days August 12-14.

* Eastern PA Alliance For Clean Transportation Electric Vehicle Workshop July 30

The Eastern PA Alliance for Clean Transportation will hold a workshop on electric vehicles on July 30 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the PECO Headquarters, 2301 Market St. in Philadelphia.

* NASA Funds Penn State Study Of Climate, Land Use In Chesapeake, Delaware Bays

Responding to the impact that a growing population and changing land use have had on the Chesapeake and Delaware Bays over the past 60 years is the focus of a research project led by Penn State and supported by a $1.4 million grant from NASA.

* DEP Hosts Open House For Western PA Local Government Officials

Staff from DEP's Southwest Regional Office hosted more than 30 local elected officials from Somerset, Indiana and Cambria counties on July 17. 

* PSATS Looking For 2015 Annual Conference Presentation Proposals

The PA State Association of Township Supervisors 2015 Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show will be held at the Hershey Lodge from April 19-22, 2015.

* July 24 DEP News Now Available

The July 24 DEP News is now available.  Click Here to sign up to receive your own copy and for back issues.

* 12th Anniversary Of Quecreek Mine Rescue July 26 In Somerset

The Quecreek Mine Rescue in Somerset County will be remembered on July 26 starting at 10:00 a.m. with a flag raising ceremony followed by a family-style picnic at the Quecreek Visitors Center at 151 Haupt Road, Somerset, operated by the Quecreek Mine Rescue Foundation.

* July 23 DCNR Resource Newsletter Now Available

The July 23 DCNR Resource Newsletter is now available.  Sign up for your own copy at the bottom of the Resources webpage.

* Enhance Penn’s Woods Initiative Results In 1,700 Acre Addition To Buchanan State Forest

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Ellen Ferretti Friday  announced that the department will add more than 1,700 acres to Buchanan State Forest with the acquisition of the Hardwoods Trail tract in Cumberland Valley Township, Bedford County.

* Paddle Without Pollution Wins National Green Paddle For Conservation Award

Paddle Without Pollution in Pittsburgh Tuesday announced it is the 2014 recipient of the prestigious ACA Green Paddle for Waterway Conservation Award.

* PPFF Receives Grant From REI To Restore Historic Trail Shelters In Laurel Highlands

Hiking and skiing in Forbes State Forest and on the Laurel Highlands Hiking Trail will be a lot more comfortable thanks to two generous grants from REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.), the PA Parks and Forests Foundation announced Tuesday.

* Smokey Bear Birthday Celebration Kicks Off At Disney Film Debut

He saw a chance and jumped on it. Or, perhaps more accurately, into it.  The limelight, that is, as Disney’s “Planes: Fire & Rescue”—a comedy-adventure about wildfire-fighting aircraft—opened last Friday at movies across Pennsylvania.

* Cooperative Effort Nourishing New Woodlands At Nolde Forest Environmental Ed Center

One is the forest of yesteryear; the other, the woodlands of tomorrow. Both are the products of vision taking root on hillsides just outside Reading at Nolde Forest Environmental Education Center.

* DCNR Seeking Engineering Assistance For Several Projects

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is seeking to retain engineering assistance for several projects (PA Bulletin, page 5064).

* 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 - July 26, 2014

* 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.

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