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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
October 2, 2006
(9/29/2006)
PDF Version - PA Environment Digest 10/2/06
* It’s Not Too Late! Plan Your Fall Foilage Trips Now Through FallinPA.com
Planning a fall foliage roadtrip? Check out Pennsylvania's www.FallinPA.com , it's one of the nation's most complete fall foliage websites with roadtrip itineraries, live interactive webcams and features to help plan a getaway.
* On the Senate/House Agenda
The Senate and House plan to consider several environmental bills this week. Here’s the rundown…
* Senate/House Actions/Bills Introduced
This Senate and House took action on these bills this week, along with introducing several bills of interest. Here’s the rundown…
* Senate Committee Approves Recycling Fee Extension Two Years Early
The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee this week approved House Bill 1902 (Rubley-R-Chester) that extends the sunset date for the Recycling Fee from 2009 to 2012.
* Senate Passes Healthy Farms, Healthy Schools Bill
The Senate has unanimously approved legislation this week that will promote Pennsylvania agricultural products in the Commonwealth’s schools, providing the opportunity to educate students about PA agriculture and the importance of a healthier diet, according to Sen. Waugh (R-York).
* House Committee to Consider Climate Change, Covenant, Nuclear Plant Fees
The House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee is scheduled to meet to consider four bills next week—
* Senate Committee to Consider Bill to Increase Water Pollution Penalties
The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee will meet next week to consider House Bill 2042 (Reichley-R-Berks) that would increase penalties for water pollution under the Clean Streams Law.
* Environmental Synopsis Features E-Cycling, Ethanol, Vehicle Fuel Economy
The September issue of the Environmental Synopsis published by the Joint Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee is now available online.
* Over 100 Attend Upper Susquehanna River Conference at Bucknell
Bucknell University and the Susquehanna River Heartland Coalition hosted the “From the Branches to the Confluence” Conference last week that attracted over 100 active watershed volunteers, water quality researchers, local officials and state and federal agency representatives.
* $5 Million in Chesapeake Bay Targeted Watershed Grants Now Available
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation announced the availability of over $5 million in grant funding through the Chesapeake Bay Targeted Watersheds Grant Program for projects that reduce nutrient runoff to the Bay and its tributaries.
* PA Conservation Corps Grants Available From Labor & Industry
The Department of Labor and Industry announced it is now accepting applications for PA Conservation Corps grants for conservation, recreation, graffiti removal, historic preservation and other projects.
* Guidelines Published for Nominating, Designating Critical Water Planning Areas
The Department this week published final guidelines for nominating proposed Critical Water Planning Areas where existing or future demands for water exceeds or threatens to exceed the safe yield of water available.
* DEP Requests Comments on Proposed TMDLs in 5 Counties
The Department of Environmental Protection is inviting comments on five proposed Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Plans for watersheds in Armstrong, Butler, Jefferson, Somerset and Venango counties--
* Pittsburgh Voyager Now RiverQuest, New Flagship On the Way
Pittsburgh Voyager, the river-based environmental education organization that provides school programs and private charters aboard its fleet, will operate under its new name RiverQuest.
* Westmoreland County Conservation District Plants First Green Roof
The nursery industry’s contention that “Fall is for planting” took a new twist September 30 as staff members of the Westmoreland Conservation District and volunteers from local conservation organizations take to the roof of the GreenForge building on Donohoe Road in Greensburg to plant more than 6,000 sedums.
* Park the Plow No-Till Program Taking Applications in Central PA
If you’re in the South Central PA Region and are looking for ways to cut down on your diesel fuel bill or wish you could find some extra time to get things done …we may have the answer, because no-till farming can do both as well as keep soil where it belongs- on the field.
* Sustainable Agriculture Grants Now Available, Apply in November, December
The Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program offers four different grant programs to explore innovative approaches to sustainable agriculture, all with application deadlines are in the late fall and early winter.
* Nutrient Management Update Meeting Offered to Dauphin County Farmers
The Dauphin County Conservation District will host a free informational meeting October 18 about changes to Pennsylvania’s nutrient management law (Act 38) as it pertains to local farmers.
* National 4-H Youth Action Grant Applications Due October 20
The National 4-H Council and Cumberland Farms, Inc. are sponsoring the 2007 Youth in Action Grants is to implement youth-led service learning projects that address a community need and incorporate the Essential Elements of 4-H.
* PA Center for Environmental Education at National Children & Nature Conference
In an effort to create stronger connections between children and the outdoors and to address the disturbing increase in children's health issues, including obesity, diabetes and attention disorders, Kathleen Paul, Director of the Pennsylvania Center for Environmental Education, joined with 350 educators, developers, health professionals and conservationists at the National Children and Nature Conference.
* $11.7 Million in Recreation and Conservation Projects Funded by DCNR
Recreation, greenway and rivers conservation projects in 25 counties will benefit from more than $11.7 million in grants announced this week by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
* PPL Signs Agreement to Purchase Additional Wind Power
The energy marketing subsidiary of PPL Corporation has signed a power purchase agreement for wind power that will add more renewable energy to the company’s diverse generation portfolio.
* PUC Seeks Recommendations on Increasing Energy Efficiency, Conservation
The Public Utility Commission this week began an investigation into cost-effective and reasonable efforts that natural gas and electric utilities can take to help consumers conserve energy or use it more efficiently.
* Clients of SBDC Environmental Assistance Program Win Energy Awards
What do all six Pennsylvania winners of the EPA Excellence in Energy Efficiency Awards reported last week have in common? They benefited from the Small Business Development Center’s Environmental Management Assistance Program.
* DOE Conducts Industrial Energy Assessment in Pennsylvania
The U.S. Department of Energy announced it is conducting a three-day Industrial Energy Saving Assessments at the General Dynamics facility in Red Lion, York County.
* Penn State Environmental Sustainability Curriculum Receives NSF Grant
The National Science Foundation has awarded Penn State a three-year, $400,000 grant for integrating sustainability in the curriculum.
* EPA Will Recognize Community Development Improvements for Older Adults
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and partner agencies have announced the "Building Healthy Communities for Active Aging" program to recognize communities that factor into community planning, environmental considerations and the need for older adults to be physically active.
* Grants Now Available for Diesel Emission Reduction Projects
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 3's Mid-Atlantic Diesel Collaborative has announced the availability of $300,000 in grant funds for projects to reduce diesel emissions in the region.
* Abington Eco Art Fest Set for October 15 in Jenkintown
The open space at Abington Art Center will take center stage at the first Eco Art Fest, an event that celebrates the environmental focus of the Sculpture Park. Visitors will be able to experience the birds, trees and artwork found in the park first-hand through talks and tours with experts.
* National Hunting and Fishing Day Celebrates Sportsmen and Sportswomen
As part of the National Hunting and Fishing Day celebrations, officials from the Game Commission, Fish and Boat Commission and the Governor’s Youth Hunting, Fishing and Conservation Council were joined by several respected statewide sportsmen's organizations to highlight the various benefits that Pennsylvanians receive from hunting, trapping and fishing.
* Help Wanted: Keep Philadelphia Beautiful, Western PA Conservancy
Keep Philadelphia Beautiful and the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy are looking for individuals to fill these two positions….
* See & Hear - Congressional Action on Abandoned Mine Reclamation Funds Urged
John Dawes, Western PA Watershed Program, provided participants in the Upper Susquehanna River Conference last week with an update on efforts by the PA AML Coalition to get legislation passed in Congress to reauthorize the federal fee that supports the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Fund. He urged everyone to contact their U.S. Senate and House representatives and urge them to act before Congress adjourns for their election recess. Watch Dawes’ comments on AML Fund reauthorization on the PaED Video Blog.
* See & Hear - Alternative Practices for Highway Stormwater Management Webcasts
Be sure to tune in for the last two programs of the Izaak Walton League's four-part Webcast series Alternative Practices for Highway Stormwater Management on October 26 and December 7.
* See & Hear - Pennsylvania Capitol Turns 100, See Special Online Tour
Pennsylvania’s Capitol Building officially turns 100 years old next week and to mark the event, what this special behind the scenes tour of the building through this online video.
* Follow A Leader - Skyline Pittsburgh-Exhibit Place Wins Award for Energy Efficiency, So Can You!
The Department of Environmental Protection this week honored Skyline Pittsburgh – Exhibit Place Inc. for implementing energy efficiency improvements that nearly cut the small business’s annual energy costs in half and helped to fuel its expansion into a new facility in McKees Rocks, Allegheny County.
* Opinion - House Bill 2878 - Resource Enhancement & Protection Act
Remarks By Rep. Jerry Stern, Before the House Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee, September 19, 2006
* Quick Clips
Here’s a selection of NewsClips on environmental topics from around the state…
* Watershed NewsClips
Read a sampling of NewsClips on watershed topics from around Pennsylvania.
* Technical Guidance - Regulations
This section has information on new Technical Guidance and Regulations.
* Calendar of Events
Upcoming conferences, meetings, workshops, plus links to other online calendars. Meetings are in Harrisburg unless otherwise noted. Go To: PA Environment Digest Calendar Page
* Stories Invited
Send your stories about environmental issues, programs and positive actions to PA Environment Digest - DHess@crisciassociates.com or go to www.PaEnvironmentDigest.com .
* Supporting Member PA Outdoor Writers Association
PA Environment Digest is a supporting member of the Pennsylvania Outdoor Writers Association.

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