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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
April 7, 2008
(4/4/2008)
PDF Version - PA Environment Digest 4/7/08
* Over 275 at Lehigh Valley Watershed, Shad Conference- Video Blog
The Lehigh Valley Watershed Conference and Shad Symposium last week attracted over 275 participants eager to learn more about how to protect and restore the over 300 miles of rivers and streams in the Lehigh Valley.
* On the Senate/House Agenda/Bills Introduced
The Senate and House will return to voting session April 7, 8 and 9 and then break until after the April 22 Primary Election.
* Senate/House Bills Moving
The following Senate and House bills of interested were moving this week—
* Informational Meeting on Deep Mine Safety Bill By House Committee
The House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee held an informational meeting on legislation that would update the state’s deep mine safety law. Rep. George, Chair of the Committee, announced the Committee will vote on the bill next Tuesday.
* DCNR Will Lease 75,000 Acres for Natural Gas Drilling in State Forests
The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources this week announced it intends to accept competitive bids for natural gas leases covering 75,000 acres on state forestlands at an informational meeting of the Senate Environmental Resources and Energy Committee
* Update of Elm Street Program Passes the House
House Bill 2233, introduced by Rep. Bob Freeman (D-Northampton), that would allow the Elm Street Program to continue beyond the sunset date of 2011 passed the House this week.
* House Committee to Consider Deep Mine Safety, Plastic Bag Ban
The House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee will meet Tuesday to consider legislation updating the state’s Bituminous coal deep mine safety law and legislation that would ban the use of plastic bags at retail stores.
* Earth Day News
April 22 is Earth Day and to help celebrate, PA Environment Digest will set aside this special section to highlight Earth Day-related programs, projects and events. Send your stories to: DHess@CrisciAssociates.com .
* Earth Day - EPA Celebrates Earth Day with New Web and Multimedia Features
How can you reduce your carbon footprint, make your home or business water efficient or save energy? Visit the special U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Earth Day web features. They include:
* Earth Day - Clinton County CleanScapes Schedules Four Cleanup, Beautification Events
The Clinton County CleanScapes Program has scheduled four cleanup and beautification programs in the coming months. They include:
* Earth Day - Dauphin County Sets Community Recycling Day May 17
Dauphin County will again hold a Community Recycling Day to accept electronics, appliances, used tires and many other items for either free or a modest fee on May 17 at the Harrisburg Area Community College parking lots.
* Earth Day - Fairmount Park Promotes Regatta Recycling in 2008
Fairmount Park and its partners will promote recycling trash in several upcoming events in Philadelphia.
* Earth Day - Central PA Conservancy to Cleanup Riverfront Park on April 22
The Central Pennsylvania Conservancy in partnership with the City of Harrisburg, Department of Parks and Recreation will be out on Earth Day, April 22 from 10am – 3pm cleaning up Riverfront Park in downtown Harrisburg.
* Earth Day - State Agencies Urge Participation in Great PA Cleanup!
The state departments of Environmental Protection, Transportation, and Conservation and Natural Resources urged Pennsylvanians this week to participate in the annual Great PA Cleanup! that runs from April 19 to May 3.
* PA Farmers Recognized for Improving Water Quality Destined for Chesapeake Bay
The Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts Inc. this week announced three Central Pennsylvania farms will receive the 2008 Pennsylvania Chesapeake Bay Clean Water Farm Award.
* New Manure Digester Contributes to Climate Change Solutions
The Brubaker Farms’ dairy operation in Lancaster County has built a new anaerobic digester/generator system with carbon offset funding provided by NativeEnergy and other partners.
* DEP Recognizes Wellhead Protection Efforts in Honey Brook, Chester County
The Department of Environmental Protection recognized the Honey Brook Borough Water Authority this week for its voluntary efforts to become the first water authority in Chester County to have an approved wellhead protection plan.
* Applications for Fish and Boat Commission State Wildlife Grants Due May 5
The Fish and Boat Commission announced it will accept applications for State Wildlife Grant Program until May 5.
* Gov. Rendell Asks New York to Make Room in Reservoirs for Coming Rain
Gov. Rendell said this week that with New York City reservoirs near full capacity, officials in the Delaware River basin states should act to better protect downstream communities in light of the rain forecast over the next two weeks.
* Pine Creek Watershed Survey Evaluates Angler Use, Harvest, Management Practices
The strong attraction of anglers to Pine Creek will be examined in a streamside survey starting Saturday along the celebrated waterway, whose diverse fishery and rugged, natural beauty embody the Pennsylvania Wilds.
* Conference Explores Collaborative Strategies for Water, Sewer & Stormwater
The Environmental Law Institute and 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania will hold a “Saving $ - Managing Water: Regional and Collaborative Approaches to Water, Sewer and Stormwater Management in Pennsylvania” Conference on May 22 at the Hilton Hotel in Harrisburg.
* First Annual Watershed Management Workshop for Teachers July 9-10
The first annual Watershed Management Workshop for Teachers will be held at Mansfield University July 9-10.
* Annual Native Plant Sale Scheduled for May 2-3 in Emmaus
The Wildlands Conservancy will host its annual Native Plant Sale on May 2-3 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Pool Wildlife Sanctuary in Emmaus, Pa.
* Noxious, Invasive Weed Management Course Set for September
The first Northeastern Weed Science Society Noxious & Invasive Vegetation Management Short Course will be held in Pennsylvania September 15-18.
* DCNR Seeking Student Applicants for Environmental Careers Camps
The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources this week invited high school students interested in pursuing environmental careers to apply for DCNR's summer residential camps.
* March PCEE Environmental Ed Connections Newsletter Now Online
The March EE Connections environmental education newsletter published by the Pennsylvania Center for Environmental Education is now available online.
* Heinz Refuge Offers “Learning About the Environment Through the Lens” Program
The Friends of the Heinz Refuge Photo Group will host its annual “Learning about the Environment Through the Lens” Program for area high school students at the John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum near Philadelphia.
* Farm Bureau Urges General Assembly to Act on Biofuels Initiatives- Video Blog
The Pennsylvania Farm Bureau held a press conference this week to encourage action on legislation to promote biofuels production in time to help provide farmers additional income and stave off the closing of existing biodiesel producers.
* Seven Regional Energy Management Workshops for Small, Medium Businesses Set
The Department of Environmental Protection and a variety of partners are sponsoring a series of seven regional Energy Management Workshops for small and medium-sized businesses who want to save money on their energy costs.
* ConocoPhillips, Penn State Partner on Nationwide Energy Prize Program
ConocoPhillips and Penn State are launching the ConocoPhillips Energy Prize, an awards program that seeks to recognize new ideas and original, actionable solutions that can help improve the way the United States develops and uses energy.
* PA Energy Star Partners Significantly Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Three Pennsylvania organizations are among those showcased in a report released this week by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for reducing greenhouse gas emissions through energy efficiency.
* FirstEnergy, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Sign Renewable Power Pact
FirstEnergy Solutions this week signed its largest green supply contract with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, a leader in pursuing environmentally sustainable practices within the health care industry.
* PUC Unveils Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards Website
The Public Utility Commission this week announced the opening of a Pennsylvania Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards Program website as part of an ongoing effort to implement and enforce requirements outlined in the Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards Act of 2004.
* Conference to Focus on the Future of Coal in Pennsylvania April 23-24
The Clean Air Council is holding a two-day conference titled, “The Future of Coal in Pennsylvania” April 23-24 at the Harrisburg Hilton.
* New Energy and Infrastructure IssuesPA 2008 TV Program To Air
The second TV program in the IssuesPA 2008 series entitled, “Energy and Infrastructure: Where We Need To Be” will be aired soon on public televisions stations across Pennsylvania.
* EPA Makes $50 Million Available to Clean Up Diesel Engines Nationwide
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced the availability of almost $50 million in Clean Diesel grant funding to establish clean diesel projects aimed at reducing emissions from the nation's existing fleet of diesel engines.
* EPA Web-Based Environmental Compliance Tool Available for Colleges
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a new web-based compliance assistance center that provides comprehensive environmental compliance assistance and pollution prevention information for colleges and universities.
* DEP Takes Over Major Federal Program Regulating Radioactive Materials
Under an agreement signed last week with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Pennsylvania this week assumed regulatory authority over approximately 700 radioactive material users in the state, a change Gov. Rendell said will strengthen public safety by improving emergency response capabilities.
* EPA Releases Report on Environmental Stewardship and Collaboration
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s independent National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology this week released a new report urging the agency to make stewardship its unifying theme and ethic and become the world's premier model and catalyst for this approach to environmental protection.
* Grants & Awards
This section gives you a heads up on upcoming deadlines for grants and financial assistance as well as nominations for awards and other recognition programs. NEW means from last week—
* 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 Department of Environmental Protection published a notice withdrawing the Neshaminy Creek Watershed TMDL Plan.
* Technical Guidance & Permits
The Department of Environmental Protection published final guidance on the Pennsylvania Clean Vehicles Program.
* Calendar of Events
Upcoming conferences, meetings, workshops, plus links to other online calendars. Meetings are in Harrisburg unless otherwise noted. NEW indicates new from last week. 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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