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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Crisci Associates, Aug. 15, 2016 Issue #633
(8/15/2016)
* Northeast Environmental Partners Announce Winners Of Environmental Awards

The Northeast Environmental Partners Thursday announced the winners of their 2016 Environmental Awards to be presented at a special awards dinner on October 20 at the Woodlands Inn and Resort in Wilkes-Barre.

* PA Resources Council Announces 4 Winners Of Environmental Stewardship Awards

The PA Resources Council will present its 2016 Environmental Leadership Awards to four organizations that have demonstrated their commitment to environmental stewardship in Pennsylvania at its annual Awards Celebration on November 10 at the Villanova Hotel and Conference Center in Philadelphia.

* PA’s Chesapeake Bay Reboot Strategy To Improve Water Quality May Need Kick-Start

By Timothy B. Wheeler, Chesapeake Bay Journal

* Delaware River Basin Commission Report Shows Reduction In Nutrient Pollution

The Delaware River Basin Commission Monday released its Lower Delaware River Special Protection Waters Assessment of Measurable Changes to Existing Water Quality report which found a reduction in nutrient pollution at most monitoring sites, and no measurable change in other parameters at 17 of 20 testing points.

* AG OKs Final DEP Drilling Regs, Legislative Committee Meets On Publishing Final Rules

The Office of Attorney General this week approved DEP’s Chapter 78 (conventional) and 78a (unconventional) drilling regulations for publication in the PA Bulletin.  Once published, the regulations will go into effect.

* PA Environment Digest Google+ Circle, Blogs, Twitter Feeds

PA Environment Digest now has a Google+ Circle called Green Works In PA.  Let us join your Circle.

* Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule/Gov’s 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--

* Water Quality Focus Of Panel Discussion At Penn State Ag Progress Days Aug. 17

Collaborative strategies to meet water quality goals for Pennsylvania's rivers and streams while ensuring productive agriculture will be the topic of a panel discussion at this year's Ag Progress Days exposition.

* Northcentral PA Partners, DEP Restoring Streams For 7th Consecutive Year

Nine streams in eight Northcentral PA counties will soon be cleaner and healthier, thanks to restoration projects funded by the Department of Environmental Protection and carried out by the DEP, Fish and Boat Commission, and nine conservation organizations.

* DEP Begins Accepting Coastal Zone Grant Applications Aug. 15

The Department of Environmental Protection will begin accepting applications for the next round of Coastal Zone Grants in the Delaware and Lake Erie (photo) coastal zones on August 15.  The deadline for applications is October 17.  (formal notice)

* PA American Water Announces $35,000 In Environmental Grants

PA American Water Wednesday announced the award of $35,000 to local environmental organizations in its service territory as part of its 2016 Environmental Grant Program

* Tour Of Upper Schuylkill River Restoration Sites Sept. 7

The Schuylkill Action Network will host a tour of mine and farm restoration sites in the Upper Schuylkill River Watershed starting at the Cabela’s in Hamburg, Berks County at 10:00 a.m.

* Call For Abstracts: 11th Annual Susquehanna River Symposium Nov. 11-12

Abstracts are now being accepted for the 11th Susquehanna River Symposium, "A Tale of Two Rivers: The Susquehanna and the Delaware," to be held November 11 and 12 at the Elaine Langone Center on the campus of Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Union County.

* Monarchs & Minelands Science Education Project To Start In Wilkes-Barre Schools

The Eastern PA Coalition For Abandoned Mine Reclamation is now preping to start a new Monarch Butterflies And Minelands science education project in Wilkes-Barre this Fall.

* DEP Hearing On Bailey Coal Refuse Disposal Area Water Quality Permit Sept. 21

The Department of Environmental Protection has scheduled a public hearing on the revised NPDES water quality permit for the Consol Bailey Coal Refuse Disposal Area in Greene County on September 21. (Aug. 13 PA Bulletin, page 5024)

* PRC To Hold Hard-To-Recycle Collection Event Aug. 20 In Allegheny County

The PA Resources Council will host a Hard-To-Recycle Collection event on August 20 in the parking lot of the Century III Mall in West Mifflin, Allegheny County from 9 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

* Keep PA Beautiful Affiliates In 3 Counties Collect 5,571 Tires With DEP Support

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s local affiliates Keep Cambria County Beautiful, PA CleanWays of McKean County and Keep Washington County Beautiful held tire collections this spring, sponsored in part by the Department of Environmental Protection’s HHW/Small Business Hazardous Waste Collection Program.

* West Nile Virus Mosquito Spraying Set For Lancaster Aug. 15, Bucks Aug. 16

The Lancaster County West Nile Program will be conducting an ultra-low volume (ULV) mosquito control operation to reduce high populations of mosquitoes capable of transmitting West Nile Virus on August 15, 2016 in parts of Lancaster City and Lancaster Township.

* PA Secretary Of Banking & Securities Warns Of Zika Virus-Related Scams

The Department of Banking and Securities Thursday warned consumers to investigate companies that offer investment opportunities based on claims of products or services related to the Zika virus.

* Workshop Proposals: PA Assn. Of Township Supervisors 2017 Conference April 23-26

The PA State Association of Township Supervisors is now accepting workshop proposals for its 2017 Annual Educational Conference and Trade Show which will be held at the Hershey Lodge from April 23-26.  Workshops will be held on April 24 - 25.

* EPA Awards Advanced Air Monitoring Tech Grant To Carnegie Mellon University

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Tuesday awarded Carnegie Mellon University one of six research grants to develop and use low-cost air pollution sensor technology, while engaging communities to learn about their local air quality.

* PUC Orders $5.2M In Refunds, Penalties Against Respond Power For Deceptive Practices

The Public Utility Commission Thursday approved a settlement under which Respond Power LLC (Respond Power), an electric generation supplier, has agreed to pay more than $5.2 million in consumer refunds and penalties, as well as modify its future marketing and business practices, as a result of alleged deceptive actions against variable rate customers during the “Polar Vortex” winter of 2013-14.

* PUC Approves $1 Million Settlement In Propane Explosion Case

The Public Utility Commission Thursday approved a $1 million settlement with Continental Communities, LLC, of Oak Brook, IL (Continental Communities), and Hickory Hills Mobile Home Park, LLC, of Bath, PA (Hickory Hills).

* PECO Natural Gas Conversion Program Brings Gas To Chester County Neighborhood

Rep. Warren Kampf (R-Montgomery/Chester) Friday announced a neighborhood in Tredyffrin Township, Chester County has met the criteria for a natural gas main extension as part of the PECO Smart Natural Gas Conversion neighborhood pilot program.

* UGI Adds Natural Gas Vehicles To Utility Fleet

UGI’s utility fleets in Lancaster, Wilkes-Barre and Williamsport now include vehicles fueled with compressed natural gas (CNG). The 18 new vehicles include cargo vans, connect vans and utility body pickup trucks.

* PUC Releases 2015 Annual Electric Service Reliability Report

The Public Utility Commission Monday released its 2015 Annual Electric Service Reliability Report, detailing the performance of the state’s electric distribution companies (EDCs) during 2015.

* 2016 Pittsburgh Solar Tour Set For October 1

The 6th Annual Pittsburgh Solar Tour will be held on October 1 from noon to 4:00 p.m.

* SustainPHL’s Winners Of Sustainability Awards To Be Celebrated Aug. 18

SustainPHL will announce the winners of its Sustainability Awards at Philadelphia’s first Sustainability Celebration on August 18 at WHYY, 150 6th Street in Philadelphia from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m.

* Pittsburgh’s Calgon Carbon Releases 2015 Global Sustainability Report

Pittsburgh-based Calgon Carbon Corporation released its third Sustainability Report Wednesday highlighting the environmental stewardship and social responsibility performance and initiatives the company advanced in 2015.

* Raccoon Creek Watershed Put On PA Rivers Conservation Registry

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources has approved the Raccoon Creek Region Conservation Plan and is placing the Raccoon Creek Watershed in Allegheny, Beaver and Washington counties on the PA Rivers Conservation Registry(formal notice)

* DCNR’s Nature Inn At Bald Eagle Wins USA Today 10Best Eco-Friendly Resort Voting

The Nature Inn at Bald Eagle  in Centre County voting USA Today’s 10Best Eco-Friendly Resort voting, beating out entries from Tennessee, Georgia, California, New York, Las Vegas and North Carolina.

* Reminder: 2016 Chesapeake Bay Forest Champion Contest Nominations Due Aug. 18

The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and the U.S. Forest Service are now accepting nominations for their annual Chesapeake Forest Champions contest to recognize the outstanding efforts of groups and individuals to conserve, restore, and celebrate forests in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.

* Woods In Your Backyard Forest Field Day Aug. 17 In Clearfield County

The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and the Forests For The Bay Program will host a Woods In Your Backyard Field Day: Working With Young Forests and Old Fields Workshop on August 27 in West Decatur, Clearfield County.

* Gifford Pinchot’s Spirituality Reveals Different Side Of Conservation Leader Aug. 27

A free program that reveals the spiritual side of eminent conservationist and former Pennsylvania Governor Gifford Pinchot is planned at Pinchot’s former home, Grey Towers National Historic Site, Milford, Pike County on August 27 at 5:30 p.m.

* Delaware Highlands Conservancy Mile-A-Minute Removal Aug. 23 In Wayne County

The Delaware Highlands Conservancy and the Downtown Hawley Partnership are hosting a work day to remove mile-a-minute weed that is currently growing in Hawley’s popular Riverside Trail on August 23 from 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

* Applications Now Being Accepted For Youth Hunting, Fishing, Conservation Council

The Governor’s Office is now accepting applications from youth 14 to 18 for the Governor’s Youth Council for Hunting, Fishing and Conservation.  The deadline for applications is September 15.

* Celebrate International Vulture Awareness Day At Hawk Mountain Sept. 3

Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Berks County will host a celebration for International Vulture Awareness Day on September 3 starting at 12 p.m.

* Lacawac Sanctuary Close Encounters With Live Birds Of Prey Aug. 13 In Wayne County

Lacawac Sanctuary & Biological Field Station is proud to present the Delaware Valley Raptor Center's live birds presentation on August 13 at the Carriage House Barn at 10:00 a.m. in Lake Ariel, Wayne County.

* PA Horticultural Society 2017 Gold Medal Plant Winners

The PA Horticultural Society has selected the 2017 winners of the PHS Gold Medal Plant Awards, recognizing exceptional plants for the home gardener and professional landscaper. PHS and its Gold Medal committee also chose hardy favorites in the perennial category.

* PA Historic Preservation Office Invites Public To Fill Out Online Survey

The PA State Historic Preservation Office has begun outreach and strategic preparations for Pennsylvania’s next official statewide historic preservation plan. Pennsylvania’s current plan will expire at the end of 2017.  

* Help Wanted: Dept. Of Environmental Protection 5 Air Quality Engineering Specialists

The Department of Environmental Protection is currently recruiting to fill five vacancies for 3 Air Quality Engineering Specialist positions located in the Northwest Regional Office in Meadville (Crawford County) and 2 positions in Harrisburg (Dauphin County).

* 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 & Recognition

This section gives you a heads up on upcoming deadlines for awards and grants and other recognition programs.  NEW means new from last week.

* Environmental NewsClips - All Topics

Here are NewsClips from around the state on all environmental topics, including General Environment, Budget, Marcellus Shale, Watershed Protection and much more.

* Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits

The Public Utility Commission published notice of final regulations covering customer information disclosure requirements for natural gas suppliers in the August 13 PA Bulletin.

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Send your stories, photos and links to videos about your project, environmental issues or programs for publication in the PA Environment Digest to:  DHess@CrisciAssociates.com.

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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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