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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
September 24, 2007
(9/22/2007)
PDF Version - PA Environment Digest 9/24/07
* Video Blog Feature - Ohio Watershed Celebration Honors Environmental Initiative
Over 800 people spent the afternoon on the Monongahela River this week learning about the improvement in Pittsburgh’s water quality, local history and sites, networking and recognizing the environmental achievements of local watershed groups and companies.
* On the Senate/House Agenda/Bills Introduced
The House and Senate have scheduled the following Committee meetings and hearings as well as published their voting Calendars —
* Senate/House Bills Moving
The Senate moved these bills this week—
* Senate Passes, Sends to Governor Mine Families First Legislation
The Senate followed the House this week in unanimously passing House Bill 483 (Bastian-R-Somerset), without changes, establishing the Mine Families First Program modeled after policies adopted by Gov. Schweiker during the Quecreek Mine Rescue in Somerset County.
* House Republicans Unveil Tax-Free Energy Plan, Dems Say It’s Pablum
People who conserve energy should not be punished with higher taxes; they should be rewarded with tax credits and other incentives. That’s one of the underlying premises behind the tax-free energy plan unveiled this week by the House Republican Energy Task Force.
* Reps. Taylor, Vereb Announce Bipartisan Plan to Fund Hazardous Site Cleanups
Reps. Rick Taylor (D-Montgomery) and Mike Vereb (R-Montgomery) this week announced their joint introduction of a bill that would provide $30 million for the Hazardous Sites Cleanup Fund to keep removing pollutants from old industrial sites.
* Senate Committee Hears Comments on Biofuels in First of Two Hearings
The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee this week held the first of two hearings on setting a biofuels policy for Pennsylvania, including Gov. Rendell's proposals to mandate bio- and ethanol additives to diesel fuel and gasoline.
* Chesapeake Bay Foundation Urges U.S. Senator Casey to Fight for Clean Water
Chesapeake Bay Foundation Pennsylvania Executive Director Matthew Ehrhart this week delivered hundreds of signed postcards to U.S. Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr. to urge his strong support for increased Farm Bill funding for Pennsylvania farmers.
* Hazardous Sites Cleanup Funding Topic of New Senate Committee Hearing
The Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee will hold a hearing September 24 on the issue of funding Hazardous Sites Cleanups.
* Environmental Issues Forum on Anti-Dumping Program, New Newsletter Online
The first Environmental Issues Forum of the Fall session will feature a presentation on the Cleanup Our American Lands and Streams (COALS) anti-dumping, anti-litter program.
* Increase in Driving Causes Unexpected Increase In Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Pennsylvania needs a more aggressive approach to global warming based on a new report that shows an alarming increase in how many miles the average person is driving, according to Brian Hill, President & CEO of the Pennsylvania Environmental Council.
* 4 Game Commission Open Houses Remain on Deer Management – Video Blog
The Game Commission held the third in a series of seven open houses this week at the Capitol in Harrisburg to explain the state's Deer Management Program and meet interested residents closer to home.
* Game Commission Youth Essay Contest Deadline October 31
Young hunters ages 12 to 16 from throughout Pennsylvania are reminded all entries for the Game Commission's Hunter Education Youth Essay Contest must be postmarked no later than October 31.
* $1 Million in Environmental Education Grants Awarded, New Applications Due
The Department of Environmental Protection this week announced the award of more than $1 million in Environmental Education grants to fund 128 projects by Pennsylvania schools, universities, non-profit groups and county conservation districts that promote environmental education.
* Wildlands Conservancy Unveils Clean Creeks Program
Wildlands Conservancy recently unveiled their Clean Creeks Trash Cleanup website to enable community groups from around the Lehigh Valley to organize their own successful cleanup.
* New Chesapeake Bay Report Results – Bad Water This Summer
A new Chesapeake Bay Foundation report, Bad Waters: Dead Zones, Algal Blooms, and Fish Kills in the Chesapeake Bay Region in 2007, documents this summer’s bad water events, and finds the resiliency of aquatic systems throughout the region stressed, underscoring the need to act quickly.
* “Floods & Fixes” Conservation Tour in Westmoreland County October 5
On October 5, the Westmoreland Conservation District will sponsor a day-long bus tour with the theme, “Floods & Fixes.”
* PPL Retires Two Coal-Fired Units at Martins Creek Power Plant, Credits Retired
After more than half a century of generating electricity, two coal-fired units at PPL’s Martins Creek power plant in Northampton County, Pa., shut down permanently on September 14.
* PA Sustainable Agriculture Assn. Sponsors Biodiesel & Compost Field Day
The Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture will sponsor a "Bio-Diesel & Compost on the Farm" field day at Briar Patch Organic Farms in Mifflinburg, Pa.
* Mother Earth Harvest Fair: A Celebration of Sustainable Living September 29 & 30
The Mother Earth Harvest Fair: A Celebration of Sustainable Living will be presented by Spoutwood Farm of Glen Rock, Pa on September 29 & 30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
* Opinion - Wind Energy Vital to Pennsylvania’s Economy, Environment and Public Health
By PennFuture
* Feature - Mill Creek Improvements Benefit Communities Downstream
One of Westmoreland County’s natural treasures, Mill Creek, recently got even better after some much-needed improvements to stabilize its streambank and slow the amount of sediment entering this exceptional waterway.
* Feature - A Stream On The Rebound-- Trout in an AMD-impacted Stream?
By Andy McAllister, Watershed Coordinator and Bruce Golden, Regional Coordinator
* 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.
* Regulations
The Environmental Quality Board published proposed changes to state Safe Drinking Water regulations for comment.
* Technical Guidance & Permits
The Public Utility Commission published notice of a correction to the default service and retail electric markets statement of policy.
* 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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