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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
Crisci Associates, May 28, 2018 Issue #726
(5/28/2018)
* Carmichaels Area High School, Greene County Wins 35th PA State Envirothon

The first place winners of the 35th Pennsylvania Envirothon held this week is the team from Carmichaels Area High School in Greene County with a score of 546 points out of a possible 600. 

* PUC Judge Issues Order To Shut Down Mariner East 1, 2, 2x Pipelines, Sunoco To Appeal

Public Utility Commission Administrative Law Judge Elizabeth Barnes Thursday issued an Order to Sunoco to shutdown the operation of the Mariner East 1 Pipeline and construction of the Mariner East 2 and 2x Pipelines in response to a petition filed April 27 by Sen. Andy Dinniman (D-Chester).

* Bay Journal: Exelon Sues Maryland Over Unfair Burden Posed By Conowingo Dam Requirements

By Karl Blankenship, Chesapeake Bay Journal

* Senate, House, Gov. Wolf Recognize 125th Anniversary Of Pennsylvania’s State Parks, Forests

The Senate, House and Gov. Wolf this week all came together to recognize the 125th Anniversary of the formation of Pennsylvania’s State Park and Forest system which formally began on May 23, 1893 when Gov. Robert E. Pattison signed a bill into law creating the Pennsylvania Forestry Commission and a few days later on May 30 signed another bill enabling the purchase of the first State Park at Valley Forge.

* DCNR To Hold 20 Meetings Seeking Public Input On State Forest Districts Across PA

Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn Tuesday announced DCNR will hold a series of 20 public meetings across the state to help the agency chart the future course of Pennsylvania’s state forest districts.

* Agriculture Issues More Detailed Spotted Lanternfly Quarantine Order For 13 Counties

The Department of Agriculture published notice in the May 26 PA Bulletin of a revised, much more detailed Spotted Lanternfly quarantine order covering the same 13 counties as before.

* Winners Of Western PA Environmental Awards, Lifetime Award Celebrated

The winners of this year’s Western PA Environmental Awards and Lifetime Achievement Award were celebrated at a special awards ceremony in Pittsburgh Thursday.

* Greater Philadelphia Sustainable Business Network Recognizes Green Infrastructure Projects To Reduce Stormwater Pollution

On May 17, the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia hosted the The Excellence in GSI Awards Ceremony, the region’s only award that celebrates and elevates green stormwater infrastructure projects and innovations, the triple bottom line (TBL) benefits of a nature-based approach to stormwater management, and the partners who bring these projects to life in the Greater Philadelphia Area.

* Germantown’s Community-Driven Green Infrastructure Upgrade Wins Philadelphia Water’s Pioneers’ Award

On Thursday Historic Germantown was recognized by the Philadelphia Water Department with a 2018 Stormwater Pioneers Award for their new rain garden, redesigned courtyard space, and commitment to the community and health of our waterways.

* 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 Last Week

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

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

Here are the Senate and House Calendars for the next voting session day and Committees scheduling action on bills of interest as well as a list of new environmental bills introduced--

* House Sends Local Clean Energy Funding Bill To Save Energy, Money To Governor

By a vote of 163 to 28, the House passed and sent to the Governor Senate Bill 234 (Blake-D-Lackawanna; Reschenthaler-R-Allegheny), a clean energy financing bill to enable local government Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy, or C-PACE, programs in Pennsylvania.

* Senate Passes Bill Making It A Felony To Simply Trespass On Pipeline, Or On Other Critical Infrastructure Property

The Senate voted 28 to 20 to pass Senate Bill 652 (Regan-R-Cumberland) making it a felony to simply trespass on the right-of-way of pipelines, electric power lines, railroad tracks, refineries or on the property of any of 21 critical infrastructure facilities outlined in the bill.

* House Committee Reports Out Bill To Encourage Use Of Native Vegetation Along Highways

The House Transportation Committee Thursday amended and reported out House Bill 2131 (Quigley-R-Montgomery) encouraging PennDOT to plant native vegetation along highways (sponsor summary).

* Nuclear Energy Caucus Hears Testimony On Jobs, Environmental Impacts Of Closing Nuclear Power Plants

The bipartisan Senate-House Nuclear Energy Caucus Wednesday heard from several labor leaders on the impact prematurely closing nuclear power plants in Pennsylvania would have on labor, the economy and the environment.

* House Committee Hears Testimony On Legislation To Pay For Lead Water Line Replacement

The House Consumer Affairs Committee Wednesday held a hearing on House Bill 2075 (Charlton-R-Delaware) authorizing the replacement of customer-owned lead water line and damaged sewer laterals by water and wastewater systems regulated by the Public Utility Commission (sponsor summary).

* Joint Senate-House Budget & Finance Committee To Release Water Use Fee Report June 6

The Joint Senate-House Legislative Budget & Finance Committee is scheduled to meet on June 6 to release a report on the Feasibility of Establishing a Water Use Fee In Pennsylvania.

* House Committee To Hold June 11 Hearing On Delaware River Basin Commission

The House State Government Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing June 11 on issues related to the Delaware River Basin Commission.

* Pennsylvania Leopold Conservation Award To Recognize PA Farmer With $10,000 Prize

The Sand County Foundation, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau and Heinz Endowments, will present the Pennsylvania Leopold Conservation Award and its $10,000 prize to a farmer or forester to recognize voluntary conservation practices on private working lands.

* Communities Look For Dig Once Opportunities To Integrate Green Infrastructure To Reduce Stormwater

By Donna Morelli, Chesapeake Bay Journal

* Scientists Monitor New Wetland Designed For Flood Control, Improved Stream Habitat In Chester County

By Diane Huskinson, Stroud Water Research Center

* Inside Pennsylvania's Strategy For Healthier Local Streams In The Chesapeake Bay Watershed

By Deborah Klenotic, Department of Environmental Protection

* Susquehanna River Rally June 9 In Harrisburg To Highlight Environmental Budget Issues

The Choose Clean Water Coalition and other partners will hold the 2nd Annual Susquehanna River Rally on June 9 in Harrisburg to call attention to environmental budget issues from 1:00 to 3:30 on City Island.

* Students Invited To Paddle CBF-PA's Susquehanna River Canoe Classic June 2 Columbia, Lancaster County

Area high school students are invited to paddle for fun and prizes when the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Pennsylvania Student Leadership Council hosts its Third Annual Canoe Classic on the Susquehanna River June 2, from 10:00 to 3:00 p.m.

* Trout Unlimited Pipeline Water Monitoring Training June 3 In Lehigh County

The Trout Unlimited Pennsylvania Pipeline Construction Monitoring Program will hold a training session for water monitoring volunteers on June 3 in Emmaus, Lehigh County in partnership with the Wildlands Conservancy.

* PA Highlands Coalition Multi-Functional Riparian Buffer Webinar June 12

The PA Highlands Coalition will host a webinar June 12 on Multi-Functional Riparian Buffers from 10:30 to Noon.

* DEP Invites Comments On TMDL Water Quality Plans For Watersheds In 5 Counties

The Department of Environmental Protection published notices in the May 26 PA Bulletin inviting public comments on Total Maximum Daily Load watershed plans for streams in five counties.  The streams include--

* Groundwater Facts, Fiction Highlighted At 2018 PA Groundwater Symposium

Groundwater professionals from across Pennsylvania gathered on May 7-8 in State College, Centre County for the 2018 Pennsylvania Groundwater Symposium hosted by Penn State Extension and the Department of Environmental Protection.

* Susquehanna River Basin Commission Meets June 15 On Water Withdrawals, Fee Schedule

The Susquehanna River Basin Commission will meet June 15 on water withdrawal requests, the proposed FY 2019 fee schedule and budget and  other issues.  (formal notice)

* Call For Papers: PA Water & Wastewater Technology Summit To Be Held Nov. 1-2

The organizers of the PA Water and Wastewater Technology Summit have issued a call for papers.  The deadline for submissions is June 15.

* Register Today For Lacawac's Student Conservation & Leadership Academy June 24-29

The Lacawac Environmental Education Center in Wayne County is now accepting registration for its Summer High School Residential Program for students age 13 to 17 running from June 24 to 29.

* DEP Blog: Coco The Chameleon Shares His Air Quality Story With Students In Norristown

By Andrea Fuchs & Jillian Gallagher, DEP Southeast Regional Office Air Quality

* DEP Environmental Justice Advisory Board To Hear Presentation On Environmental Rights Amendment May 29

On the agenda for the May 29 meeting of DEP’s  Environmental Justice Advisory Board is a presentation on Pennsylvania’s Environmental Rights Amendment by Franklin Kury, the author of the legislation that resulted in the Amendment.

* Keep PA Beautiful, DCNR Partner On Cigarette Litter Prevention Program With Keep America Beautiful Grant

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful Tuesday announced it has received a $20,000 grant from Keep America Beautiful to continue their work with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources on the KAB Cigarette Litter Prevention Program.

* DEP Holds June 7 Hearing On Rolling Hills Landfill Expansion In Berks County

The Department of Environmental Protection Tuesday announced it will hold a hearing June 7 the Delaware County Solid Waste Authority’s Major Permit Modification Application to increase the capacity of the Rolling Hills Landfill, located in Earl Township, Berks County.

* PA Municipal League Sustainability Conference June 5 In State College

The PA Municipal League and Sustainable Pittsburgh will host the 3rd Annual Municipal Sustainability Conference at the Hyatt Place in State College from 9:00 to 4:00.

* Reinford Farms, Juniata County, Wins U.S. Innovation Center 2018 Dairy Sustainability Award For Renewable Energy Projects

Land O'Lakes, Inc. dairy member-owner Reinford Farms, a second-generation, family-owned dairy farm located in Mifflintown, Juniata County, in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, is a winner of the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy's 2018 U.S. Dairy Sustainability Award.

* CFA Awards 9 Grants Totalling $16.1 Million For Energy Efficiency, Clean Energy, Energy Infrastructure Projects

Gov. Tom Wolf Tuesday announced $16.1 million in funding was approved by the Commonwealth Financing Authority for nine projects to promote energy efficiency, clean energy and energy infrastructure for homes and commercial buildings.

* Conservative Leaders Launch PA Conservative Energy Forum In Support Of Diverse Energy Policy

Members of Pennsylvania’s conservative community Thursday announced the launch of the Pennsylvania Conservative Energy Forum (PennCEF).

* Mid-Atlantic, Western PA Solar Energy Associations Honor Sen. Scavello For New Solar Energy Law

Sen. Mario Scavello (R-Monroe) was honored Wednesday by the Solar Unified Network of Western Pennsylvania and the PA Chapter of Mid-Atlantic Solar Energy Industries Association for his efforts to boost the use of clean energy in the Commonwealth.

* Exelon: Three Mile Island Did Not Clear PJM Capacity Auction

Exelon Corporation Thursday announced its Three Mile Island and Dresden nuclear plants did not clear in the annual PJM capacity auction, and all but a small portion of its Byron nuclear plant also failed to clear.

* FirstEnergy Nuclear Power Plants Fail To Clear PJM Power Auction

FirstEnergy Solutions Thursday announced none of its nuclear power plants-- including Beaver Valley in Pennsylvania-- cleared the PJM capacity auction. 

* PUC Chairman Gladys Brown Named To DOE Natural Gas Infrastructure Modernization Partnership

The National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners has appointed 14 commissioners to the NARUC-U.S. Department of Energy Natural Gas Infrastructure Modernization Partnerships, including Pennsylvania PUC Chairman Gladys Brown.

* Pittsburgh Council Adopts 100% Renewable Energy, Zero Waste Goals

Pittsburgh City Council Tuesday voted to approve the city's Climate Action Plan 3.0, which commits Pittsburgh government to a series of climate-friendly goals through 2030.

* UGI Energy Efficiency Program Saves State Prison In Luzerne $16,000 In Annual Electricity Costs

UGI presented an Energy Efficiency and Conservation rebate check Thursday to the Department of Corrections for installing new lighting equipment at State Correctional Institution-- SCI-Retreat, located in Hunlock Creek, Luzerne County.

* Kleinman Energy Center: Reimagining Pennsylvania’s Coal Communities

The Kleinman Center for Energy Policy at the University of Pennsylvania Wednesday published a report-- Reimagining Pennsylvania’s Coal Communities-- making recommendations on economic development strategies to help the people and places involved in the coal industry.

* Sustainable Economic Development Task Force Of Indiana County Receives EPA Support For Food Co-Op

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency joined other federal partners Thursday in announcing assistance to the Sustainable Economic Development Task Force of Indiana County, Pennsylvania, to further diversify the local economy by creating a plan to help a new co-op in downtown Indiana become an effective outlet for local producers.

* DCNR Announces More Smoke-Free Beaches At State Parks, Enhanced Reservation System

With the Memorial Day holiday weekend kicking off the traditional start of the camping season, DCNR Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn Friday announced that the 2018 camping and swimming season will usher in new “Smoke Free Beaches” at six state parks in Pennsylvania.

* 2019 Pennsylvania State Parks Calendar Now Available

The 2019 Pennsylvania State Parks Calendar is now available featuring award winning photographs from the PA Parks and Forests Foundation.

* DCNR Approves Submerged Lands Lease For $340,000 In Lycoming County

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources published notice in the May 26 PA Bulletin it has approved a submerged lands lease for $340,000 plus royalties with Seneca Resources natural gas drilling company in Lewis Township, Lycoming County.

* Nature Abounds Seeking Volunteers For Juniata River Sojourn June 14-17

Nature Abounds is seeking volunteers to be part of the upcoming Juniata River Sojourn to be held June 14 to 17.

* Cameron County Chamber Hosts June 2 Hike Celebrating National Trails Day

The Cameron County Chamber of Commerce will host a hike on June 2 to celebrate National Trails Day.

* Native Plants In The Landscape Conference June 6-9 At Millersville University

Millersville University and Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve will host the Native Plants In The Landscape Conference in Lancaster June 6 to 9.

* Registration Now Open For Women And Their Woods Educational Retreat On Sept. 6-9

Women across the mid-Atlantic region who own, care for, or are interested in learning more about forestland are invited to apply now to attend the Delaware Highlands Conservancy’s Women and Their Woods Educational Retreat from September 6-9 at the Highlights Foundation Workshop Facility, Milanville, Wayne County.

* South Mountain Partnership Speakers Series: May 31 Women Who Built The Appalachian Trail

The 9th annual South Mountain Partnership Speakers Series kicks off May 31 with an exciting look at some relatively unknown historical figures who helped make the Appalachian Trail what it is today.

* Hawk Mountain Wraps Up Spring Hawk Watch, Numbers 40% Lower Due To Weather

The 2018 Spring Migration Hawk Watch at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Berks County came to a close on May 15, after a six week observation period that began April 1.

* Game Commission: Springtime Alert - Do Not Disturb Young Wildlife

Whether in their backyards or high on a mountain, it’s almost certain Pennsylvanians will encounter young wildlife this time of year.

* Lee Ann Murray Takes Position With House Democratic Caucus Legal Staff

Lee Ann Murray has taken a Senior Legal Counsel position with the House Democratic Caucus legal staff after serving since May 1, 2017 as Executive Director of DEP’s Citizens Advisory Council.

* Help Wanted: 10,000 Friends Of Pennsylvania President

10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania is seeking a dynamic individual to serve as President to lead its day to day operations while creating an exciting future together with our staff, Board of Directors and or funding partners.

* 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 & 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.

* 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

No new regulations were published this week.  Pennsylvania Bulletin - May 26, 2018

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* 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:  PaEnviroDigest@gmail.com.

* 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.

* Register Now For 20th PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference

Registration is now open for the 20th Anniversary PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference to be held June 20-21 at the Ramada Inn & Conference Center in State College.  Join PA Environment Digest as a sponsor of this terrific Conference.

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