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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
December 10, 2018 Issue #754
(12/10/2018)
* EQB To Consider Proposed Increases In Air Quality, NPDES, Water Quality Permit Fees Dec. 18

The Environmental Quality Board is scheduled to meet on December 18 to consider proposed increases to Air Quality permit and NPDES and Water Quality permit fees.  The Board will also be asked to make a change to final non-coaling permit fees at the request of the Independent Regulatory Review Commission.

* NFWF Announces $13.1 Million In Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund Grants, Including PA

On December 3, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced more than $13.1 million in grants to support the restoration and conservation of the Chesapeake Bay watershed in six U.S. states and the District of Columbia.

* Chesapeake Bay Foundation Receives NFWF Grant To Expand Rotational Grazing

On December 3, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced the Chesapeake Bay Foundation will receive more than $850,000 to promote rotational grazing (also known as prescribed grazing) in Maryland, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Virginia. Rotational grazing enhances soil health, protects and improves water quality, and contributes to a farm’s economic viability.

* CBF-PA: Farm Conservation Plans Are Important, But Farmers Struggle To Implement Those Plans

On December 7, Harry Campbell, executive director for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation in Pennsylvania, made the following statement after the Department of Environmental Protection reported inspections found that 96 percent of almost 3,000 small farms visited in the watershed meet state requirements for having pollution reduction plans.

* DEP Blog: Healthy Waters, Healthy Communities: Lancaster County's Watershed Planning

By Allyson Ladley Gibson, Coordinator, Lancaster Clean Water Partners (Facebook)

* Bay Journal: Multifunction Stream Buffers Offer Food For Thought For PA Farms

By Donna Morelli, Chesapeake Bay Journal

* EDF Blog: New Resource Available To Help Dairy Industry Clean Up Local Watersheds

By Suzy Friedman, Environmental Defense Fund

* AP: Gov. Wolf: Cap-And-Trade Climate Plan May Be Something PA Should Adopt

On December 7, the Associated Press reported Gov. Tom Wolf is considering whether to support a petition submitted to the Environmental Quality Board November 27 creating a cap-and-trade greenhouse gas reduction plan to address climate change Pennsylvania.

* Role Of Coal, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power Questioned In DEP Climate Plan Update

On December 4, members of DEP’s Climate Change Advisory Committee got the chance to comment on the draft 180-page 2018 PA Climate Action Plan Update and recommendations prepared for DEP by their consultant ICF.

* Auditor General DePasquale Announces Plans For Special Report On Climate Change In PA

On December 3, Auditor General Eugene DePasquale announced plans to prepare a special report exploring how Pennsylvania is responding to climate change in light of a failure by national leaders to recognize and act on the issue.

* LancasterOnline Editorial: We Must Act Aggressively And Immediately On Climate Change

The following editorial appeared on LancasterOnline.com December 5--

* PA Supreme Court Denies Appeal Of Case Challenging Use Of Eminent Domain By Mariner East 2 Pipeline, But A Challenge Remains

On December 5, the PA Supreme Court denied an appeal by the Clean Air Council and landowners challenging the basic authority of the Mariner East 2 Pipeline to use eminent domain authority.

* In Memoriam: Donald M. Hoskins, PA State Geologist 1987 - 2001

Donald M. Hoskins, who served as Pennsylvania State Geologist from January 8, 1987 until his retirement in January 27, 2001, passed away on December 5.

* Senate/House Co-Sponsor Memos/Agenda/Session Schedule[Updated]/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--

* November State Revenue Collections $95.5 Million Above Estimate; $333.6M Above Estimates Year-To-Date

On December 3, the Department of Revenue announced Pennsylvania collected $2.3 billion in General Fund revenue in November, which was $95.5 million, or 4.3 percent, more than anticipated.

* Joint Conservation Committee Newsletter Profiles Wildlife Leadership Academy

The December issue of the Joint Legislative Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee features articles on--

* Op-Ed: Earthrise, The Image That Changed Our View Of Ourselves

By Tony Guerrieri, Executive Director Joint Conservation Committee

* U.S.D.A. Approves Disaster Relief Funding For Farmers In 14 PA Counties

On December 3, Gov. Tom Wolf notified farmland owners in Columbia, Lebanon, and York counties that they are eligible to receive disaster relief funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

* U.S. Office Of Lead Hazard Control & Health Homes Has Additional Funding Available

HUD’s federal Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes received additional lead hazard control funding.

* Save The Date! Statewide Watershed Connections Conference Feb. 24-25 In State College

The PA Environmental Council, PA Organization For Watersheds and Rivers and other partners will host the statewide Watershed Connections - Leveraging Our Power For Watershed Health- Conference on February 24-25 in State College.

* PA Environmental Educators Call For Workshop Proposals For Their 2019 Conference In Philadelphia March 18-19

On December 4, the PA Association of Environmental Educators are now accepting proposals for interactive workshops, multi-speaker presentations, roundtable and panel for their upcoming 2019 Conference on March 18-19. The deadline for proposals is January 14.

* December Catalyst Newsletter Now Available From Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition

The December issue of The Catalyst Newsletter is now available from Butler County-based Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition featuring articles on--

* DEP Opportunity To Bid On Mine Reclamation, Clearfield County, Tank Removal, Delaware County

The Department of Environmental Protection published notices in the December 8 PA Bulletin of the opportunity to bid on a mine reclamation project in Clearfield County and a tank removal project in Delaware County (page 7588).

* West Branch Susquehanna Restoration Coalition Meets Dec. 11 In Clinton County

The West Branch Susquehanna Restoration Coalition is scheduled to meet December 11 at the Clinton County Conservation District Environmental Learning Center, 45 Cooperation Lane in Mill Hall from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m.

* DEP: New Water System Completed For 700 Residents Affected By Industrial Pollution In Lackawanna County

On December 4, the Department of Environmental Protection announced the completion of a new community drinking water system for 700 residents in three Lackawanna County townships whose water supplies were affected by pollution.

* Delaware River Basin Commission Winter Photo Contest Begins Dec. 21

The Delaware River Basin Commission will accept entries for its Winter Photo Contest from December 21 to February 15.

* Sustainability Expo Highlights Penn State's Leadership In Engaged Scholarship

By Marchella Verdi, Penn State News

* PA Environmental Council: In Case You Missed It In November Now Available

The In Case You Missed It In November newsletter is now available from the PA Environmental Council featuring stories on--

* PA Solar Center Invites Responses To RFP To Assist Nonprofit Groups In Converting To Solar Energy

The Pennsylvania Solar Center of New Sun Rising based in Millvale, Allegheny County are inviting nonprofit groups in Western Pennsylvania to respond to the G.E.T. Solar Initiative RFP on assisting them to make the process of converting to solar energy straightforward and simple. 

* Exelon To Retire 3 Landfill Gas Generation Facilities In Pennsylvania

On November 30, Exelon Generation announced it would retire 9 smaller electric generation facilities by June 2020 due to economic challenges, including 3 landfill gas generation facilities in Pennsylvania.

* Natural Gas Distribution Companies Expect Little Change In Natural Gas Use In PA During Winter Heating Season, Slight Increase In Cost

On December 4, the Public Utility Commission released 2018 Winter Reliability Overview Reports from the state’s major natural gas distribution companies, along with a related Readiness Report from the Energy Association of Pennsylvania.

* PJM Electric Grid Operator Says Members Prepared To Meet Winter Electricity Demand

On December 5, the PJM Interconnection announced its members are prepared to meet the forecasted winter electricity demand in the nation's largest high-voltage power grid.

* Williams To Hold Public Meetings On Proposed Leidy South Natural Gas Pipeline Dec. 11 Lycoming County, Dec. 12 Clinton County, More

The Williams Pipeline Company will hold a series of 4 Federal Energy Regulatory Commission-required public meetings starting December 11 on the proposed Leidy South Natural Gas Pipeline and related compressor station projects in Clinton, Columbia, Luzerne, Lycoming and Schuylkill counties.

* IFO Reports Natural Gas Production Increased 18.5% Over The 3rd Quarter 2017

On December 4, the Independent Fiscal Office reported natural gas production in the third quarter increased 18.5 percent over the third quarter of 2017 and year-to-date production increased 12.9 percent.

* PUC To Livestream Dec. 11 PA One Call Pipeline, Utility Damage Prevention Committee Meeting

On December 7, the Public Utility Commission announced it will livestream the December 11  meeting of the PA One Call Pipeline & Utility Damage Prevention Committee starting at 9 a.m. in Hearing Room 1 of the Commonwealth Keystone Building, Harrisburg.

* Pocono Heritage Land Trust Hosts Dec. 9 Pomeroy McMichaels Creek Nature Preserve Hike In Monroe County

The Pocono Heritage Land Trust will host a hike on December 9 in the Pomeroy McMichaels Creek Nature Preserve near Stroudsburg, Monroe County from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.

* Feature: Making Connections - Trailblazers In Monroe County

By Carol Hillestad, Brodhead Watershed Association

* PA Land Trust Assn Increasing Grant Maximums For Conservation Easement Assistance Program

On December 3, the PA Land Trust Association announced it is increasing the maximum size of the grants available through the Conservation Easement Assistance Program--

* PA Great Outdoors Visitors Bureau Now Accepting Entries To Winter Fun Photo Contest

On December 4, the PA Great Outdoors Visitors Bureau announced it is now accepting entries to their new Winter Fun Photo Contest.  The deadline for entries is February 28.

* Penn State Extension, Partners Offering Online Tree Tender Training Jan. 24 To March 7

Penn State Extension is offering a series of online Tree Tender training sessions from January 24 to March 7.  One hour sessions will be held each week at Noon or 7:00 p.m. The first session is January 24.

* NDAL Ecology Based Landscape Design: What Comes Next? Jan. 10-11 Montgomery County

New Directions in the American Landscape will hold one of its two 2019 Ecology Based Landscape Design: What Comes Next? Conferences January 10-11 at Montgomery County Community College in Blue Bell.

* Call For Proposals: 2019 Natural Areas Conference, Oct. 8-10 In Pittsburgh

The Natural Areas Association and its partners will host the 2019 Natural Areas Conference-- On The Water's Edge-Managing Our Land and Water In A Changing Landscape-- on October 8-10 in Pittsburgh.

* 2019 Pennsylvania Fishing Licenses Are Now On Sale, Makes A Great Holiday Gift!

On December 1, the Fish and Boat Commission announced 2019 fishing licenses are now available!

* Fish & Boat Commission Proposes Changes To Endangered, Candidate Species Lists

The Fish and Boat Commission published notice of a proposed regulation for comment adding the pugnose minnow and blacknose shiner and removing the banded sunfish and gravel chub from the endangered species list; and removing the central mudminnow and the eastern mudminnow from the state’s list of candidate species that could achieve endangered or threatened status in the December 8 PA Bulletin.

* Game Commission: Now You Can Binge Watch The York County Bald Eagle Cam's New Season

The livestream from a bald-eagle nest near Codorus State Park in Hanover, York County has launched for a fifth season, with Hawk Mountain Sanctuary joining HDOnTap and Comcast Business as a partner in the project.

* PA Environmental Council Welcomes Tali MacArthur As Watersheds Program Manager

On December 4, the PA Environmental Council welcomed Tali MacArthur as the Watersheds Program Manager and will serve a leadership role in PEC's related entity the PA Organization For Watersheds and Rivers.

* Help Wanted: Wildlife Leadership Academy Development/Operations Coordinator

The Union County-based Wildlife Leadership Academy is seeking qualified candidates for a part-time Development/ Operations Coordinator position.  The deadline for applications is January 1.

* 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.

* 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.

* Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits

Here are highlights of actions taken by agencies on environmental regulations, technical guidance and permits.

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CLICK HERE to View or Print the entire PA Environment Digest.  This Digest is 81 pages long.

* Stories Invited - About PA Environment Digest

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.

* Sponsor: 2019 PA/National Abandoned Mine Reclamation Conference

PA Environment Digest is proud to be a sponsor of the 2019 PA Abandoned Mine Reclamation and National Abandoned Mine Lands Program Conference to be held in Pittsburgh on September 8-11.

* 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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