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Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
August 17, 2009
(8/17/2009)
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* Both Sides Call For Budget Conference Committee To Meet, But They Don't

* Get Daily Updates On PA Environment Daily Blog, Twitter

* A Decade Of Growing Greener - Making Lemonade Out Of Lemons - Bertsch-Hokendauqua-Catasauqua Watershed Assn.
The following article was submitted by Jim Wilson, Watershed Specialist, Northampton County Conservation District on behalf of the Bertsch-Hokendauqua-Catasauqua Watershed Association outlining another success story resulting from Pennsylvania's historic investment in the Growing Greener Watershed Program. The Association is now eligible for a $250 grant from the www.Growing Greener.com website.
* A Decade Of Growing Greener - A Catalyst For Change In The Lititz Run Watershed

* Submissions For Growing Greener Anniversary Grants Due August 20

* On the Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule

NOTE: Due to the unpredictable nature of the Senate and House Committee schedule, meetings will be scheduled and cancelled quickly. The Calendars and Committee schedules this week are only a snapshot in time. 

* Senate/House Bills Moving

The following bills of interest saw movement this week-- 

* Pennsylvania Team Takes Top Honors At National Envirothon

* DEP Agrees To Allow U.S. Energy To Start Natural Gas Drilling After Violations, Penalty
The Department of Environmental Protection has executed a consent order and agreement with U.S. Energy Development Inc. of Getzville, NY that allows the company to resume drilling activities in northwestern Pennsylvania while limiting the number of active well sites. U.S. Energy also paid a $200,000 civil penalty to DEP.

* Williams-Transco Pipeline Project In Chester County Gets DEP Approval
The Department of Environmental Protection this week approved a plan by Transcontinental Gas Pipeline LLC to connect a portion of its new seven-mile natural gas pipeline in Chester County to an existing pipeline that runs beneath Brandywine Creek.

* Atlas Energy Doubles Marcellus Shale Gas Reserve Estimates In PA
Atlas Energy this week increased its estimate of gross undeveloped potential reserves in the Marcellus Shale in southwestern Pennsylvania to 9.125 trillion cubic feet of natural gas equivalents (Tcfe) from a previous estimated range of 4 to 6 Tcfe.

* Marcellus Shale Drilling Companies Spend Over $1 Million Lobbying In 2009
PennFuture this week reported companies drilling for natural gas in Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale formation reported spending over $1 million lobbying the General Assembly and Pennsylvania officials during the first six months of 2009.

* NRCS Offering Grants To Install Farm Conservation Practices
The U.S. NRCS is offering watershed grants to install conservation practices on crop and livestock farms in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. The deadline for applications is August 26.

* Marple Township Joins EPA WaterSense Program

* Williamsport/Lycoming KIZ Greenovation Competition Invites Entries
The Williamsport/Lycoming Keystone Innovation Zone is coordinating the second annual Central Pennsylvania Greenovation Competition. Entries are due September 4.

* DCNR Acquires 1,175 Acre Tract For Addition To Lackawanna State Forest

* Wildlands Conservancy Publishes 2008 Annual Report
The Wildlands Conservancy, which runs conservation projects along the Lehigh River and in and around Allentown, published its 208 annual report this week.

* State Invests $20.7 Million In Clean Energy Projects
The PA Energy Development Authority this week announced $20.7 million investments in 25 projects to generate and conserve enough energy to power more than 26,000 homes, reducing carbon emissions equivalent to removing more than 17,000 cars from our roadways.

* City Of Philadelphia Launches Carbon Offset Website

* Onorato Announces $3.49 Million EPA Grant To Improve Air Quality In Allegheny County

* Health Department Confirms First Human Case Of West Nile Virus In PA This Season

* PA Center For Environment Ed Seeking Information On Outdoor Classrooms
Melissa Wardian, a graduate student from the Pennsylvania Center for Environmental Education,  is compiling information on outdoor classrooms to be included in a new online resource directory guide.

* Help Wanted: Erie County Watershed Specialist
The Erie County Conservation District is seeking candidates for a Watershed Specialist position which will be responsible for continuing the organization's efforts in watershed restoration and conservation in the county. Details available online.
* Opinion - In Support Of Joe Pizarchik As Director, Federal Office Of Surface Mining
by Bruce Golden, Western Coalition for Abandoned Mine Reclamation
* 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 notice of a proposed revision to the State Air Quality Implementation Plan relating to diesel idling and extended the comment period on proposed changes to the water, wastewater operator certification program to September 9 (announcement).  The Delaware River Basin Commission  published notice of a proposed change in water quality regulations related to PCBs.
* Technical Guidance & Permits
The Department of Environmental Protection  published notice of a revised General Information Permit form, a  final guidance document on considering local zoning when reviewing permit applications and grants, an extension of the NPDES Ms4 and General Permit PAG-13 relating to stormwater management, notice of proposed revisions to the General NPDES Permit PAG-2 for stormwater discharges from construction,  notice of availability of a draft fiscal year report for the Mine Reclamation Fee Operation and Maintenance Account and  notice of changes to the Radon Certification list (PA Bulletin page 4950).
* 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.

* PA Environment Digest Family Of Websites

* Supporting Member PA Outdoor Writers Assn./PA Trout Unlimited

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