You are on page 1of 30

PA Environment Digest

An Update On Environmental Issues In PA
Edited By: David E. Hess, Crisci Associates
Winner 2009 PAEE Business Partner Of The Year Award Harrisburg, Pa September 3, 2012

DEP Releases Permit Review Policy For Comment Proposing A No Strikes Rule The Department of Environmental Protection published a notice in the September 1 PA Bulletin inviting comments on a draft policies related to Permit Review Process and Decision Guarantee and Permit Coordination covering over 244 mining (coal and noncoal), oil and gas, air quality, waste, storage tank, drinking water, water quality, dam safety, erosion and sedimentation control and water obstruction and encroachment permits and approvals. The policies are open for public comment until October 1. The policies implement Gov. Corbett’s July 24 Permit Decision Guarantee Executive Order, outlining the process DEP will use to guarantee an efficient timeframe in which the agency will make a decision on complete permit applications and authorizations. “Gov. Corbett promised to reform how government operates in Pennsylvania,” DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. “Good government means the efficient delivery of services, and that includes DEP permitting decisions. This process asks everyone to do a better job: DEP, businesses, non-profit organizations, local governments and consultants who work for these groups.” DEP studied applications and permit procedures and discovered that about 40 percent of permit applications submitted to DEP are deficient, meaning they lack full information needed for DEP’s permit reviewers to make a sound decision. “That creates a waste of everyone’s time,” Krancer said. [Editor: DEP’s study of the existing permit process mentioned in this release and in an op-ed piece last week has not been released to the public.] Under the new process, if a permit application is deficient—requiring it to be returned twice—DEP may deny it. “Setting the clear expectation that every permit application should be correct and complete the first time is the key to efficiency on both sides,” Krancer said. “We need to free our staff from what amounts to a merry-go-round of reviewing deficient applications; returning them to the applicants; and, essentially, doing applicants’ work to make the applications shipshape.” An important feature of the Permit Review Process and Decision Guarantee is that it strongly encourages applicants to arrange pre-application meetings with DEP to discuss the agency’s expectations during the permitting process and learn their obligations as applicants. It also prioritizes the order in which permits are reviewed. “The Permit Review Process and Decision Guarantee enables our staff to do their main job of concentrating on protecting the environment and making decisions. At the same time, it gives the regulated community a more predictable and efficient permit application review and decision process,” Krancer said. “We encourage the public and all stakeholders to review the

draft policies and offer feedback to us.” The companion Permit Coordination policy outlines how staff should coordinate projects that require multiple permits. DEP staff will review the policies’ effectiveness annually and make any necessary adjustments. The agency plans to develop electronic permitting tools to further improve the process. Permit Review Priorities The draft policy sets priorities for reviewing applications by DEP and would eliminate any “first-in-first-out” review policies unless required by law. The proposed priorities include-1. Applications for projects necessary for the protection of public health, safety and the environment; 2. Applications for projects necessary for economic development; 3. Applications within Permit Decision Guarantee; 4. Those applications that have been excluded from the Permit Decision Guarantee but are necessary for economic development projects that create jobs and enhance communities; and 5. Lastly, any remaining applications will be reviewed on a “first-in-first-out” basis. No Strikes Rule The draft policy says that only permit applications determined to be complete and without technical deficiencies will be covered by the permit decision guarantee. If technical deficiencies are found in the permit application during the technical review, the deficiencies will void the permit decision guarantee. Applicants will have one opportunity to correct the deficiencies DEP identifies in a deficiency letter and a deadline is established for responding to the deficiency letter. If the applicant’s response corrects the deficiencies, the application will then be subject to what DEP calls an Elevated Review Process where DEP sets a new deadline for decisions. Webinars DEP will host two web-based information sessions about the draft policies, with time for questions and answers, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. on September 5, and September 10. To register for the webinars, review the draft policies, read the Frequently Asked Questions fact sheet and executive order, visit DEP’s Permit Decision Guarantee webpage. NewsClips: DEP Issues Draft Permit Review Process Policy Overhauled DEP Permit Rules Would Streamline Reviews DEP Citizens Advisory Council: DEP Update On Program Changes Each month the Department of Environmental Protection provides a report policy initiatives and the status of program and regulation changes to the DEP Citizens Advisory Council for its information. In the past this more than 20 page report has not been routinely made available to the public. The report covers a variety of topics and their latest status. Some information in the updates has not changed in a while because the information is the last status reported. Other information is quite new. Here’s a summary of the topics covered in the 22-page August Report prepared by DEP: -- Water Management -- Water Quality Standards Triennial Review -- NPDES MS4 Permit (PAG-13)

-- NPDES Pesticide General Permit (PAG-15) -- NPDES Large & Small Vessel General Permits (vGPs) -- State Water Plan: Development of Critical Area Resource Plans -- Water Resource Technical Assistance Center -- Marcellus O&G Water Management Plan Activities -- Chesapeake Bay TMDL/Watershed Implementation Plan -- PA’s Chesapeake Bay Watershed Implementation Plan (Milestones, Nutrient Trading, Wastewater Plants, Agriculture Updates, Revisions to construction stormwater general permit (PAG-02), E&S Control Manual training -- Stormwater Offsetting Workgroup -- Riparian Buffer Waivers -- E&S Control Pollution Manual -- Safe Drinking Water Unregulated Contaminant Rule 3 -- Waste Management -- Recycling Fund & Solid Waste Advisory Committee agenda -- Municipal & Residual Waste Regulation Revisions -- Land Recycling Program Technical Guidance Manual -- Energy Initiatives: Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant, PA Energy Development Authority, PA Sunshine Program, Small Business Ombudsman, Federal Stimulus Funded Projects, ISO 50001 Workshops, Department of Corrections CHP Project, Energy Symposium. -- Oil & Gas Issues -- Latest on implementation of Act 13 Marcellus Shale provisions; White Paper on proposed Chapter 78 changes required by the law, Act 13 Roll-Out, draft Erosion and Sedimentation Control General Permit (ESCGP-2), policy on addressing spills and releases from oil and gas wells and related operations. -- Oil and Gas Workload Report -- Spud well report submitted to the PUC -- Implementation of Act 9 of 2012 related to emergency response at well sites -- Oil and Gas Technical Advisory Board meeting summary -- Mining/Reclamation/AMD Issues -- Abandoned Mine Surface/ Bond Fund Discharge Treatment -- Status of Proposed Coal Permit and Non-Coal Permit Fees -- NPDES Permitting For Mine Sites -- Act 54 Mine Subsidence Impact Report -- Pending Policy Guidance Documents -- PA Office of Homeland Security - requested list of contacts for trade associations -- Environmental Education -- Environmental Education Grants Program -- EE Outreach, Workshops, Conferences, Board meetings, Upcoming Outreach Events -- Green Schools -- Falcon Outreach/Education -- Office of Program Integration -- Project Syllabus permit review improvement process A copy of the report is available online. Did You Know You Can Search 8 Years Of Digests On Any Topic?

Did you know you can search 8 years of back issues of the PA Environment Digest on dozens of topics, by county and on any key word you choose. Just click on the search page. Also take advantage of these related services from Crisci Associates-PA Environment Digest Twitter Feed: On Twitter, sign up to receive instant updates from: PAEnviroDigest. PA Environment Daily Blog: provides daily environmental NewsClips and significant stories and announcements on environmental topics in Pennsylvania of immediate value. Sign up and receive as they are posted updates through your favorite RSS reader. You can also sign up for a once daily email alerting you to new items posted on this blog. PA Environment Digest Video Blog: showcases original and published videos from environmental groups and agencies around the state. Sign up to receive as they are posted updates through your favorite RSS read. You can also sign up for a once daily email alerting you to new items posted on this blog. PA Capitol Digest Daily Blog to get updates every day on Pennsylvania State Government, including NewsClips, coverage of key press conferences and more. Sign up and receive as they are posted updates through your favorite RSS reader. You can also sign up for a once daily email alerting you to new items posted on this blog. PA Capitol Digest Twitter Feed: Don't forget to sign up to receive the PA Capitol Digest Twitter feed to get instant updates on other news from in and around the Pennsylvania State Capitol. Senate/House Agenda/Session Schedule Here are the Senate and House Calendars and Committee meetings showing bills of interest as well as a list of new environmental bills introduced-Session Schedule Here is the latest voting session schedule for the Senate and House-Senate September 24, 25 October 1, 2, 3, 15, 16, 17 November 14 (Leadership Elections) House September 24, 25 October 1, 2, 3, 4, 15, 16, 17, 18 November 13, 14, 19, 20

Bill Calendars House (September 24): House Bill 1659 (Pyle-R-Armstrong) providing for a uniform permit review and consideration process within DEP; Senate Bill 367 (D.White-R-Indiana) providing for mineral resource development on other state lands and providing for allocation of revenue; Senate Bill 1150 (Smucker-R-Lancaster) providing for an historic preservation tax credit; Senate Bill 1480 (Corman-R-Centre) providing for the 2012-13 Capital Budget; House Resolution 438 (Cruz-D-Philadelphia) urging Philadelphia to establish a waste tire removal and disposal program; House Resolution 423 (Petri-R-Bucks) directing the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to study state funding formulas and how they impact counties; House Resolution 505 (Preston-D-Allegheny) disapproving the PUC regulation on natural gas competition. <> Click Here for full House Bill Calendar. Senate (September 24): All bills on the Senate Calendar were Tabled. <> Click Here for full Senate Bill Calendar. Committees House: the House Republican Policy Committee hearing on coal-fired power plants, the coal industry and environmental regulations at Saint Vincent College, Fred M. Rodgers Building, Westmoreland County. <> Click Here for full House Committee Schedule. Senate: <> Click Here for full Senate Committee Schedule.

News From Around The State
DEP Lifts Drought Declaration For 15 Counties In Western PA The Department of Environmental Protection announced Friday it has lifted a drought watch declaration for 15 counties in western Pennsylvania, based on recommendations from the Pennsylvania Drought Task Force. “Rainfall over the last six weeks helped out the situation immensely in these counties,” DEP Secretary Mike Krancer said. “We’ve seen improved stream-flows and soil moisture, and while some groundwater levels are still below normal we feel confident that conditions will continue to improve.” The drought watch was issued July 19 because of below-normal rainfall that resulted in low stream-flow conditions, decreased groundwater levels and precipitation deficits of up to five and a half inches. The Pennsylvania Drought Task Force uses reports and forecasts from the National Weather Service and U.S. Geological Survey, as well as analysis from DEP’s drought monitoring program, to make its recommendations on issuing and lifting declarations. Stream-flows have returned to normal for many areas. The upper reaches of the Allegheny basin are still below average. Recent rainfall has improved soil moisture in the region. Groundwater conditions are expected to return to normal over the coming months, as these levels typically lag two to three months behind precipitation.

While conditions have improved, it is not a complete recovery. The Pennsylvania Drought Task Force will continue to monitor conditions across the state. A drought watch declaration, the first and least severe level of the state’s three drought classifications, calls for a voluntary five-percent reduction in non-essential water use. A drought warning is the second level of the drought classification and asks residents to voluntarily reduce water use by 10-15 percent. A drought emergency is declared through proclamation by the governor, bans non-essential use and requires public water suppliers to implement contingency plans. For more information, visit DEP’s Drought webpage. NewsClips: Drought Watch Lifted In Western PA Applications Now Being Accepted For REAP Farm Conservation Tax Credits Pennsylvania farmers can take advantage of nearly $7 million in tax credits to purchase on-farm conservation equipment or install facilities meeting best management practice standards through the Resource Enhancement and Protection Farm Conservation Tax Credit, or the REAP program. Producers with proposed or completed projects can submit applications immediately. The projects will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis. REAP is a tax incentive program for agricultural producers who enlist private support to reduce erosion and sedimentation that impacts Pennsylvania’s watersheds. The program, administered by the State Conservation Commission, helps producers with the purchase of conservation equipment and materials to help protect the environment. “REAP helps producers farm for the future without compromising the needs of the present,” said Agriculture Secretary George Greig. “This program has helped producers improve their operation while advancing the health of our watersheds.” Private investors often provide capital to producers as a project is approved in return for tax credits. Any individual or business subject to taxation under Personal Income Tax, Corporate Net Income Tax, Bank Shares Tax and others, is eligible to participate in REAP. The program began in 2007 and since then 2,609 projects worth more than $39.5 million have been approved. The public and private investment made to implement these projects is $68.7 million. REAP has helped reduce more than 11 million pounds of nitrogen, 859,485 pounds of phosphorus and 877,059 pounds of sediment through 2010. Farmers can receive tax credits of up to $150,000 per agricultural operation for 50 or 75 percent of the total project cost. The most common projects approved are for no-till planting equipment, materials for waste storage facilities, manure management plans and protecting heavy animal use areas like barnyards. Applications for the 2012-2013 REAP program are available on Agriculture’s REAP webpage or by calling 717-787-8821. Nearly $2.5 Million In Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Grants Awarded In PA The Chesapeake Bay Program and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Tuesday announced the recipients of $9.2 million in grants for restoration and outreach initiatives in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed's six states and the District of Columbia, nearly $2.5 million in Pennsylvania.

Among a myriad of other benefits of the 41 projects, these efforts will engage 9,000 volunteers in restoration work, restore 176 miles of streamside forests, restore 158 acres of wetlands, and establish 170,000 square feet of green roofs and rain gardens. The funding for these environmental initiatives was awarded through the Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund via the Small Watershed Grants Program and the Chesapeake Bay Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction Grants Program, both of which are administered by NFWF. ”The Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund is a model, public-private partnership that has demonstrated its ability over time to achieve measurable and significant on-the-ground conservation results that benefit fish, wildlife and the communities of the Chesapeake,” said David O’Neill, Director of the Eastern Partnership Office at NFWF. “Through these grants, diverse agencies led by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the U.S. Forest Service, pool resources with private funding from Altria, Wal-Mart, Wells Fargo, FedEx and others to make smart and cost-effective investments that directly benefit the Bay and its rivers.” The Innovative Nutrient and Sediment Reduction Grants Program (INSR), funded by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), awarded $6.8 million to 21 projects in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with recipients providing $10.1 million in matching funds. The INSR Program provides grants to innovative and cost-effective projects that dramatically reduce or eliminate the flow of nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment pollution into local waterways and the Chesapeake Bay. Many awardees seek to manage the amount of nutrient runoff from livestock, dairy, and crop farms by conducting outreach and providing technical assistance to farmers. The Pennsylvania projects include--- The Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Inc. ($200,000) will initiate a campaign in Franklin County to increase riparian tree planting in rural and urban areas and convert turf to trees on private property. The project will restore 6,400 feet of streamside buffer. -- The City of Lancaster, Pa. ($500,000) will pilot an innovative business model to privately finance urban stormwater retrofits, accelerating implementation and improving costeffectiveness of stormwater retrofits on private land. -- The Stroud Water Research Center ($500,000) will accelerate streamside buffer protection under the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program. The project will use an innovative strategy to leverage farmers' interests in other conservation practices. -- The Stroud Water Research Center ($200,000) will evaluate cost-effectiveness of methods for forest buffer restoration. The project will demonstrate alternatives to planting seedlings, such as natural regeneration, direct seeding and live staking. -- The Pennsylvania State University ($378,100) will accelerate riparian buffer and green infrastructure restoration through an innovative public/private partnership that will engage private consultants and residents to sustain projects. -- The Capital Resource Conservation and Development Area Council, Inc. ($79,600) will improve the long-term success of riparian buffer projects on farmland. This project will test an innovative approach to buffer maintenance, working with landowners and private landscapers in Franklin County. -- The Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Inc. ($200,000) will provide outreach and technical assistance to accelerate first-time enrollment of new riparian buffers through the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program. The project will create 368 acres of forest buffers and restore 57

acres of wetlands. -- The Spring Creek Chapter of Trout Unlimited, Inc. ($69,800) will restore 600 feet of eroding stream bank along Spring Creek, reducing upstream runoff, establishing 1.5 acres of buffer and improving water quality and fish habitat in this cold water system. -- The Nature Conservancy ($161,200) will implement conservation practices that will improve water quality and brook trout habitat in the Juniata, Lower Susquehanna, and Potomac River watersheds by planting six miles of forested riparian buffers, establishing eight acres of early successional forest habitat, and restoring 15 acres of wetlands. -- Trout Unlimited, Inc. ($191,700) will improve eastern brook trout populations and habitat in the Kettle Creek watershed by strategically implementing stream corridor restoration projects and reducing runoff from dirt and gravel roads. Chesapeake Bay Foundation Receives NFWF Grant For PA Buffer Projects Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Pennsylvania Executive Director, Matthew J. Ehrhart Tuesday issued this statement following the National Fish and Wildlife Federation’s public announcement of grant awards through the “2012 Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund.” CBF’s Pennsylvania office is receiving a grant for the proposal “Technical Assistance for New and Re-enrolling PA CREP Buffers.” “We are honored to be receiving a Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund grant, and appreciate NFWF’s continued commitment to improving water quality locally and in the Chesapeake Bay. “The goal of our project is to improve water quality in 20 south-central PA counties and the Chesapeake Bay by installing nearly 400 acres of new streamside forested buffers, and assisting landowners in their efforts to maintain existing buffers. Both new and existing forested buffers are installed through the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). “Since 2000, CBF staff have assisted thousands of Pennsylvania landowners with the installation CREP forested buffers. Our forested buffer restoration program is central to achieving progress on Pennsylvania’s Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP), which calls for 38,000 new acres of forested buffers by the end of 2013. “CBF is committed to working with the Farm Service Agency, Natural Resource Conservation Service and other partners to assist landowners throughout the process, and to do our best to continue the successes of forested buffers. Reducing pollution by installing buffers will create jobs and benefit local economies. Restoring clean water will not just benefit us, it will benefit our children and future generations.” USDA Announces Over $3.7 Million In Conservation Innovation Grants For PA Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Thursday announced $26 million in Conservation Innovation Grants awarded by USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service to entities across the nation for projects that test and prove innovative approaches to conserving America's private lands. Over $3.7 million in grants will benefit Pennsylvania and its watersheds. The grant winners will demonstrate innovative approaches to improving soil health, increasing pollinator and wildlife habitat, protecting water quality and producing on-farm energy savings. Grant recipients will pay 50 percent of all project costs.

"We're announcing 59 grants today in 47 states that will help some of America's top agricultural and conservation institutions, foundations and businesses develop unique approaches to enhancing and protecting natural resources on agricultural lands," Vilsack said. "The grants will help spur creativity and problem-solving to benefit conservation-minded farmers and ranchers. Everyone who relies on our nation's natural resources for clean water, food and fiber, for their way of life, will benefit from these grants." CIG PA Grants The grants benefiting Pennsylvania include: -- The Pennsylvania State University (NY, PA, MD)- $688,684: Maximizing Conservation in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed with an Innovative New Three-way Interseeder to Early Establishment of Cover Crops in No-till Corn and Soybean: This project proposes to establish on-farm winter cover crop interseeding demonstration trials across the Chesapeake Bay watershed and document performance of the three-way interseeder. The project will also demonstrate the nutrient management benefits of coupling cover crop interseeding strategies with an online nutrient management tool (Adapt-N) and create case studies of farmers It will also develop region-specific cover crop interseeding recommendations for the Chesapeake Bay watershed and provide this information to producers through innovative content delivery. -- The Pennsylvania State University- $801,535: Refining and Harmonizing Phosphorus (P) Indices in the Chesapeake Bay Region to Improve Critical Source Area Identification and to Address Nutrient Management Priorities: This regional project will coordinate the testing and revision of phosphorous management tools within the states encompassing the Chesapeake Bay watershed, with general objectives to harmonize site assessment and nutrient management recommendations with the NRCS 590 standard and to promote consistency within each of the Bay's four major physiographic provinces. This regional project is one of four (three regional, one national) proposed under coordination of SERA-17, with goals to support the refinement of state Phosphorous Indices and to demonstrate their accuracy in identifying the magnitude and extent of phosphorous loss risk and their utility to improve water quality. The proposed project will promote innovations in phosphorous management at state (harmonizing Phosphorous Indices) and local (changes in behavior of farmers and/or technical service providers developing and implementing Phosphorous Indices) levels to enhance the health of the Chesapeake Bay. The project involves six objectives designed to ensure that refinement of Phosphorous Indices is grounded in the best available science, reflects local conditions and concerns and anticipates impacts to water quality and farm management. -- University Of Delaware (DE, AR, PA)- $967,461: Innovative Approaches to Capture Nitrogen and Air Pollutant Emissions from Poultry Operations: The overall goal of the project is to help broiler producers adopt viable, practical, economical and effective strategies to improve their environmental performance, meet applicable federal and state requirements on air and water quality and to achieve strong, sustainable productive and profitable broiler producing operations. Demonstration sites will be broiler producers in Arkansas, Delaware and Pennsylvania. Nutrient Trading In the Chesapeake Bay, five awardees will be facilitating and building infrastructure for water quality trading markets: the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Inc.; Chesapeake

Bay Foundation; Borough of Chambersburg; Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of Conservation & Recreation; and Maryland Department of Agriculture. NRCS will work with the grantees to form a water quality trading network, a forum to share ideas, coordinate program development and evaluate program components. The projects benefiting Pennsylvania include: -- Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, Inc. (PA, MD, VA)- $437,756: Facilitating Forestbased Offsets in Water Quality Trading: This project proposes to harmonize state and local agency forest mitigation and trading requirements to ease adoption by agricultural producers, aggregators and credit buyers like developers. The project will test and refine market infrastructure, so it is immediately useful for landowners, public programs and credit buyers. It will also complete 8-10 forest-based practice pilot projects with Environmental Quality Incentives Program-eligible producers in southern Maryland to test forest protocols and market infrastructure. The project will also assist local governments in meeting the nutrient and sediment goals in their Watershed Implementation Plans by simplifying the implementation of forest based offsets and credits and easing their workload by establishing the Chesapeake Forests Offset Bank. -- Borough of Chambersburg- $112,050: Local Utilization of Agricultural Credits Program: The purpose of the program is to provide credit aggregation, inter-basin trading and baseline and threshold compliance barrier solutions relating to the Pennsylvania Nutrient Trading Program by creating an aggregation program for credits generated by cover crop and conservation tillage best management practices (BMPs) and with education and outreach targeted to the Commonwealth’s Plain Sect agricultural operators. The Program will develop and implement a three-year local program to aggregate credits generated through agricultural BMPs, cover crop and no-till/ conservation tillage practices on farms in three counties covering two watersheds. -- Chesapeake Bay Foundation- $700,880: Operationalizing Water Quality Trading in the Chesapeake Bay: This project proposes to conduct outreach to roughly 200 Environmental Quality Incentives Program eligible farmers in Virginia and Pennsylvania to determine eligibility for participation in trading and Agricultural Certainty programs, if applicable. The project will assess the potential for the supply of credits from agricultural producers using in-place state policies for establishing the agricultural baseline. It will also compare policies for setting the trading baseline in Pennsylvania and Virginia and the practice-based resource management plan approach in Virginia with performance-based approaches using the multi-state trading tool. The results can be used to inform state policies on these issues, to link these policies with compliance with the total maximum daily load requirements, and to facilitate multi-state trading opportunities. The project will seek feedback from producers as and state policymakers on the multi-state trading tool to help improve the tool and add features that are consistent with ongoing and future developments in state trading policies and user needs. For more information, visit USDA’s Conservation Innovation Grants webpage. DEP Invites Comments On Watershed TMDL In Lycoming County

The Department of Environmental Protection invited comments on a proposed Total Maximum Daily Load Plan for Wolf Run in Lycoming County (PA Bulletin page 5699). For a copy of the proposed TMDL, visit DEP’s TMDL webpage. Unique Dance Program To Benefit Wissahickon Creek Restoration In September Philadelphia-based choreographer Jenny Sawyer will present a truly unique, evocative and strikingly beautiful site-specific dance duet IN the Wissahickon Creek September 15, 16, 22 and 23 at 2:00 p.m. entitled UPSTREAM. UPSTREAM is a plea for us to heal our ailing world by fully acknowledging that humans are part of nature and not separate from it.... a plea for a paradigm shift of cultural proportions. This evocative duet is taking the traditional, sanitized dance performance and literally putting it into the river. This will be unlike anything you have seen before. The program will be held at the Outdoors in the Wissahickon Creek near Valley Green Inn. The suggested donation is $15. To make your reservation please send email to: jroesawyer@gmail.com and you will receive a confirmation email containing all the audience information you will need. Audience seating is somewhat limited, so reserve your spot now! Click Here for more information. Click Here to watch the first version of UPSTREAM from 2011. Spotlight- Slippery Rock Creek Coalition Hosts Visitors From Brazil, Colorado Restoration and remediation of land and water is a worldwide concern that has brought many scientists together to create solutions and share ideas. Doctoral environmental student and friend Beatriz Firpo of the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brzel created an experience such as the one described when she came to tour some of the passive treatment systems in Western Pennsylvania recently. Along side Beatriz traveled a master’s degree student, William LaBaree of Towson University in Maryland. Leading the tour was Kelsea Palmer, a student intern from St. Francis University, working with the Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition, Stream Restoration, Inc. and BioMost, Inc. The first stop was a successful passive treatment system near the Pittsburgh International Airport installed through the efforts of the Montour Run Watershed Association and many project partners. On their way north, Beatriz and William also visited the SRWC offices in order to check out the pottery of Clean Creek Products and learn more about the efforts of the SRWC to restore our streams. Of course no tour would be complete without stopping by the Jennings Environmental Education Center. The JEEC site allowed Beatriz and LaBarre to see some new ideas in action such as the demonstration of the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative, where chestnuts and other desirable species are prospering on abandoned mine soils, as well as innovations relating to passive treatment technology. In Brazil, Beatriz and her colleagues work toward the revitalization of the soil at abandoned mine sites and the re-vegetation that is require to restore and secure the ecosystem.

The day of the tour consisted of much conversation about the progress and successful results of addressing environmental issues with passive technology. We always love to see our friends from Brazil and appreciate Carlos Schneider for recommending that Beatriz visit some of our sites and for his continued implementation and interest in environmentally-friendly mine restoration efforts! (Reprinted from the August issue of The Catalyst, Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition) Spotlight- Babb Creek Watershed Association, Antrim Micro-Hydropower Plant With the opening of a valve, a new page in history was written in the book of acid mine drainage treatment in Pennsylvania. DEP Secretary Michael Krancer opened the valve as part of the July 18 site dedication, marking the beginning of a unique renewable energy generator in Tioga County. The valve opening allowed treated acid mine water from the Antrim Treatment Plant to power a turbine and begin generating electricity to run the facility. Also on hand to participate in the celebration were Mike Smith, District Mining Manager, and Mario Carrello, Watershed Manager, both from DEP’s Moshannon Office and Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition participants and BioMost, Inc. staff: Tim Danehy, Cliff Denholm, Shaun Busler, Sylvia Danehy, Bryan Page, Buck Neely, Ryan Mahoney, Kelsea Palmer and Margaret Dunn. “This micro-hydro plant is the firs of its kind in Pennsylvania to use acid mine water to generate renewable energy while creating no air or water pollution,” Secretary Krancer said. “It helps to solve an existing water pollution problem by using a treated waste product from past mining activities to generate energy.” The Antrim Micro-Hydropower Project will also sell a portion of the electricity back to the utility company without causing pollution. Since the 1990’s AMD has been treated with lime at the Antrim Treatment Plant and by 2002 five miles of Pine Creek had been restored to a viable fishery. Now the plant does even more and upon approval of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, a portion of electricity generated will be sold to electric companies for revenue. Bill Beacom, the president of the Babb Creek Watershed Association said, “It is our hope that this project can be used throughout Pennsylvania and the United States so that they can produce revenue and get some more of these discharges cleaned up, and we’ll have many more miles of polluted streams cleaned up.” The BCWA identified electric power production from the treatment plant discharge as a way to reduce the plant’s operating costs and generate an additional revenue stream for the Antrim Treatment Trust, which was established by the Antrim Mining Company before going out of business. In 2008, BCWA received a DEP Energy Harvest Grant to install two hydroelectric turbines on the Antrim Treatment Plan effluent. In May of this year, BioMost, Inc. completed construction, which includes a small pond that collects treated water from the Plant; 1,000 feet of pipeline; and a power house with two, 20 kilowatt turbines. One turbine is currently operating at the power house in order to supply electricity to operate the conventional treatment plant. When licensed by the Federal Energy Regulatory

Commission, however, both turbines will be used in order to supply power to the grid, eliminating an estimated $12,000 in annual electrical costs needed to operate the treatment plant and generating about $10,000 per year in additional revenue from the Antrim Treatment Trust. Woodlands Bank, which administers the Trust and Waste Management, Inc. were also involved in the project, teaming with the BCWA, DEP and BioMost, Inc. to form a partnership which has allowed this one-of-a-kind project to achieve success. (Reprinted from the August issue of The Catalyst, Slippery Rock Watershed Coalition) DEP Awards SRBC Grant To Help Small Water Suppliers Meet Updated Standards The Department of Environmental Protection Monday announced it has awarded the Susquehanna River Basin Commission a $125,000 grant to guide small public water supply systems through the commission’s water withdrawal approval process. Some existing approvals, granted prior to today’s more comprehensive resourcemanagement standards, will soon expire. This grant will help those systems’ operators comply with the new process. “DEP is working with the commission to ensure that the smaller systems receive the technical assistance needed to navigate today’s regulatory environment,” DEP Deputy Secretary for Water Management Kelly Heffner said. “This grant will allow the commission to provide system-specific guidance for facilities that are dependent on water from the watershed.” “SRBC is very aware that smaller public water systems often lack the resources to prepare and complete applications that are substantially more involved now than they were 25 or 30 years ago,” SRBC Executive Director Paul Swartz said. “Thanks to this grant from DEP, we will be able to provide training and assistance to these smaller, rural local government systems that will, in turn, improve the quality of the applications the commission receives.” SRBC will use a selection process to identify the small public water supply systems in the Pennsylvania portion of the Susquehanna River Basin needing the most assistance to develop system-specific compliance and permitting action plans. The plans will outline a course of action for preparing and submitting applications to SRBC. In addition to guiding the public systems through SRBC’s application process, the grant will allow SRBC to help the local governments identify potential system capacity needs, reduce consulting costs and provide technical hydrogeological assistance. SRBC will also offer training to the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association, Pennsylvania Rural Water Association and Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors, along with advanced training to consultants who work with public water systems. The grant is funded by Pennsylvania’s Clean Water Fund, which is supported by fines, fees and penalties. Symposium On Health Effects Of Fracking Sept. 21 In Philadelphia Delaware Valley Grantmakers and The College of Physicians of Pennsylvania are pleased to present a Symposium on the Health Effects Of Hydraulic Fracturing September 21 at 8;30 a.m. at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia 19 South 22nd St., Philadelphia. The program will feature a presentation by Robert E. Oswald, PhD and Michelle Bamberger, DVM, on their recently published article, "Impacts of Gas Drilling on Animal and

Human Health,” as well as a panel discussion with Raina Rippel of the Southwest Pennsylvania Environmental Health Project and David Carey, PhD, Director of Geisinger Health System's Weis Center for Research. Ms. Rippel will offer perspectives on what the project has learned so far about the health impacts of hydraulic fracturing in Pennsylvania, while Dr. Carey will discuss how Geisinger is using data to help understand the health effects of these activities in the communities it serves. Additional presenters to be announced. For more information and to register, visit the Symposium webpage. Keep PA Beautiful’s Fresh Paint Days Grant Winners Announced Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful is pleased to have announced the 8 grant winners of their 2012 Fresh Paint Days Pennsylvania Program. Designed to provide community groups with paint and painting supplies, the program enables these groups to renew a community structure in need into something beautiful through the application of fresh paint and a lot of elbow grease. During the month of September, the 8 grant winners will transform their structure utilizing up to 20 gallons of exterior paints and $75.00 in painting supplies. This year’s event is held in partnership with support from BEHR and The Home Depot. The 8 grant winners are: -- Allegheny County – Historic Deutschtown Development Council for painting the Beckert Building along East Ohio Street. -- Blair County – Catherine, Williamsburg, and Woodbury Townships for painting the Community Center. -- Bradford County – Bradford County Branch of YMCA for painting community pool. -- Indiana County – Indiana County Head Start for painting the community head start building. -- Montgomery County – Abington Shade Tree Commission for painting a mural in Grove Park. -- Philadelphia County – New Kensington CDC for painting Brotherhood Mission which serves as a community food bank and homeless shelter for residents in need. -- Washington County – PA Environmental Council for painting the California Library Caboose. -- Westmoreland County – Borough of Irwin for painting the Irwin Park Amphitheater. "Thanks to the strong partnership that exists between BEHR and The Home Depot, we are thrilled to take part in the 2012 Fresh Paint Days Pennsylvania,” states Steve Ward, Regional Sales and Operations Manager for BEHR. “Our culture of strengthening and growing the communities in which we serve is exemplified in the actions of this project. We look forward to sharing in the passion and pride of the participants who want to do whatever it takes, great or small, to make their community a better place." “Through our partnership with BEHR and The Home Depot, Fresh Paint Days Pennsylvania empowers community groups to take a direct role in community revitalization efforts,” explains Shannon Reiter, President of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful. “Something as simple as a fresh coat of paint on a public library or community center sends a strong message that we care about our communities.”

For additional information regarding Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s Fresh Paint Days Pennsylvania Program, please contact Michelle Dunn, Fresh Paint Days Pennsylvania Program Coordinator, at 1-877-772-3673 ext. 113 or send email to: mdunn@keeppabeautiful.org. Keystone Energy Help Program Issues 10,000th Loan State Treasurer Rob McCord Thursday marked a major milestone in Pennsylvania’s nationally recognized Keystone Home Energy Loan Program, which recently issued its 10,000th loan to make homes more energy efficient. The Treasurer said aside from the number of loans, he likes to focus on the jobs, energy savings, and environmental benefits the program has made possible. “It’s a tremendous accomplishment for the Keystone HELP program to have issued 10,000 loans to date, but I think it’s really instructive to examine what those low-interest loans have made possible,” said Treasurer McCord. “Families are saving over $2.3 million annually on their utility and fuel bills because they’re using less energy. And because they’re using less energy, their combined carbon footprint is much lower, which is great for our environment.” Treasurer McCord said the energy savings associated with Keystone HELP-financed home improvements prevent over 22,500 tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year, or the equivalent of taking 4,000 cars off the road. “All of this would not be possible, however, without the more than 1,800 skilled and certified contracting firms that perform this work,” said Treasurer McCord. “Thanks to this program, we have small-, medium-, and large-sized companies across the state who are trained especially to do this type of work. These are true ‘green collar’ jobs that embody the potential of a clean energy economy in Pennsylvania if we make energy efficiency and conservation part of our overall energy policy.” Treasurer McCord said each Keystone HELP project is responsible for about 31 hours of work, so estimates are that the 10,000 loans made through the program to date have supported a full year’s worth of work for 150 employees. “Keystone HELP is one of the most successful energy efficiency lending programs in the country thanks to a really effective public-private partnership. It’s serving as a prototype for other states on how to make energy efficiency affordable for more homeowners,” said Peter Krajsa, chairman and CEO of AFC First Financial Corporation, the energy efficiency lender that administers Keystone HELP. Treasurer McCord and Mr. Krajsa made their remarks today during a visit to the home of Michelle and Dave Olson. The Olsons recently used a Keystone HELP loan to replace an old, inefficient oil heater with a more energy efficient natural gas unit. The couple also added insulation to their home in order to prevent heat from escaping, which can cost homeowners hundreds of dollars per year. Keystone HELP is an innovative, national leader in providing low-interest loans to homeowners for energy conservation improvements such as replacing inefficient windows, heating and cooling units; adding insulation; or making “whole house” improvements. The Pennsylvania Treasury worked with AFC First Financial Corp. of Allentown and the West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund to launch the program statewide in 2006. In 2009, the program began to offer even lower interest rates when Treasury partnered with the Department of Environmental Protection to expand the program’s impact by using funds appropriated under Pennsylvania’s Alternative Energy Investment Act. Last year, the program

began to use federal stimulus funds to support even lower rates for homeowners. To date, the program has made more than 10,000 loans in 66 Pennsylvania counties worth more than $68 million. The federal government regularly recognizes Keystone HELP and the work of AFC First as a model for how the private and public sectors can collaborate to finance residential energy efficiency improvements. The U.S. Department of Energy last year designated AFC First as the nation’s first private sector Home Performance with Energy Star sponsor. The designation means Pennsylvania families that pursue money-saving home energy efficiency improvements through Keystone HELP will benefit from improved affordability and higher training standards for contractors. “I believe we are just beginning to scratch the surface of this program’s full potential,” said Treasurer McCord. “As we continue to develop and identify new opportunities to expand the program, I think you can expect more good news in the future – good news for families who hope to finance home energy improvements, and for the men and women in our construction and manufacturing sectors who are standing by ready to meet the demand for this type of work.” A list of loans issued by county is available online. For more information, visit the Keystone HELP website. NewsClip: State Energy Savings Loan Program Makes 10,000th Loan PECO Launches New Website Optimized For Mobile Devices PECO customers can now report an outage, check their service status, and pay their bill with PECO Smart Mobile On-the-Go, a new mobile optimized version of the PECO website. To take advantage of this service, first visit the PECO website and sign up for PECO’s on line convenience center. PECO customers who are signed up for the company’s online convenience center, and manage their account electronically, can then use their account specific username and password to perform tasks on the mobile site. “We want to provide our customers with tools to make it easier and faster for them to do business with us,” said Mark Alden, PECO vice president of Customer Operations. “This is the first of many new applications we are looking to incorporate into our portfolio of service options – all focused on improving the customer experience.” This new portion of the PECO website has been designed for Smart Phones and tablet devices, like iPads. Customers, who access the site from their Smart Phone or tablet, will be asked whether they would like to view the full PECO website, or only the portion of the site that has been designed specifically for their Smart Phone or tablet device. When the customer visits the site in the future, the device will automatically direct the customer to version of the site they last visited. DCNR's 2012-13 Calendar Commemorates Civilian Conservation Corps The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources is pleased to offer a new 2012-2013 16-month special edition calendar commemorating the 80th anniversary of the Civilian Conservation Corps.

The calendar salutes the hardworking CCC boys who dedicated years of their life in the construction of many of Pennsylvania’s emerald jewels. The calendar features historic images of the CCC in Pennsylvania, along with information to highlight the important role the Corps played. The 2012–2013 calendars is $8.49 plus tax and $1.95 for shipping and handling. The proceeds benefit Pennsylvania’s State Parks. You may purchase a calendar by calling the PA State Park Reservation Center at 1-888PA-PARKS (727-2757), Monday through Saturday between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. The calendar is also available for sale in the PA State Parks. Explore South Mountain Region For Labor Day Weekend A wide array of free events will take place Labor Day weekend at more than 30 participating sites in the South Mountain region of southcentral Pennsylvania, showcasing the area’s best outdoor recreational opportunities. South Mountain Outdoors, now in its second year, will launch on September 1, marking the start of two days of biking, hiking, kayaking, fishing, history tours and cultural festivals across Cumberland, Adams and Franklin counties. “South Mountain Outdoors is for anyone interested in getting outside, whether you hike, paddle, fish, or are interested in conservation,” Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Richard Allan said. “It gives adults and kids the opportunity to meet people who work in conservation and outdoor recreation and learn more about the amazing resources and recreational opportunities this region offers.” The guide to the weekend’s events is the South Mountain Outdoors Passport that can be downloaded online or picked up at participating locations. Participants can leave the passport at any of the noted locations to be eligible for a random drawing of prizes donated by participating South Mountain region sites. Featured events on September 1 and 2 include: Bigfoot Boot Camp at Kings Gap Environmental Education Center; guided bike rides by the Harrisburg Bicycle Club and along the Cumberland Valley Rail Trail; a walking tour of the Dickinson College Farm; an Appalachian Trail hike followed by sticky buns at Allenberry Resort Inn; backyard beekeeping hike at Strawberry Hill Nature Preserve; specials along the Gettysburg Wine and Fruit Trail; and more. Labor Day also marks one of two days out of the year on which anyone can fish in Pennsylvania without a fishing license. Those looking to try their hand at fishing, but don’t have gear, can visit Pine Grove Furnace State Park, located at the mid-point of the Appalachian Trail, for free loaner equipment on September 3. South Mountain Outdoors is sponsored by the South Mountain Partnership, made up of private citizens, businesses, nonprofit organizations and government representatives in Adams, Cumberland, Franklin and York counties, working to protect and enhance the region’s landscape. The partnership was sparked by DCNR’s Conservation Landscape Initiative, an effort to engage communities, local partners, state agencies and funding opportunities to conserve the high-quality natural and cultural resources while enhancing the region’s economic viability. For full details, visit the South Mountain Outdoors Blog or call the Appalachian Trail Conservancy at 717-258-5771.

Save The Date: PA Wilds 3rd Trails Conference October 4 PA Wilds will host its third annual Trails Conference on October 4 at the University of Pittsburgh Bradford Campus from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The theme this year is Advancing Trails into PA Wilds. Learn about: the benefits of forming a regional trail group, trail start ups, advanced trail design, promotion and marketing your trail and mapping your trail. Also meet members of the newly formed PA Trails Advisory Committee. Watch the PA Trails website for more information. Game Commission To Participate In, Host Events Promoting Wildlife, Hunting, Trapping Each year, Game Commission officials, in September, participate in and host three outdoors events promoting wildlife, hunting and trapping. “Hunting and trapping are deeply woven in the cultural fabric that defines Pennsylvania’s heritage, and both remain an important wildlife management tool and outdoor activity,” Roe said. “Hunters and trappers were – and remain - our nation’s first and most vocal conservationists. In the late 1800s, they were the leaders among the groups that pushed to have state and federal agencies create and enforce laws and regulations to protect and conserve wildlife and its habitat. “The three upcoming events celebrate more than a century of conservation efforts, as well as the abundance of wildlife we have to enjoy that is a result of that work.” In Crawford County, the 31st annual Pymatuning Ducks Unlimited Waterfowl and Outdoor Expo will be held September 15-16 in and around Linesville, Crawford County. A highlight of the two-day event is the selection of the 31st Annual Pennsylvania Waterfowl Management Stamp from entries by many of the Commonwealth’s most accomplished wildlife artists. Judging will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 15, at the Linesville High School, 302 West School Drive, Linesville. At 10 a.m., on September 15, the Game Commission will conduct its annual public drawing to select those who will be afforded an opportunity to use one of the blinds for waterfowl hunting at Pymatuning. The drawing will be held at the Game Commission’s Pymatuning Administration Building, 9552 Hartstown Rd., Hartstown. At 11:30 a.m. on September 15, Kevin Jacobs, Game Commission biologist, will hold a waterfowl information and banding program, with the opportunity for children to assist in the release of wild ducks, at the Game Commission’s Pymatuning Wildlife Learning Center, 12590 Hartstown Rd., Linesville. The Learning Center also will be open on Saturday and Sunday for visitors. Also on September 15-16, the Game Commission’s Middle Creek Wildlife Management Area will host the 26th Annual Middle Creek Wildfowl Show. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day at the Visitor Center, which is along Hopeland Road, two miles south of Kleinfeltersville, on the Lebanon-Lancaster county line. Admission is free, but donations are graciously accepted and will benefit the Wildlands Preservation Fund, which has helped to preserve more than 46,000 acres in an 18-county area in eastern Pennsylvania, including more than 1,200 acres at Middle Creek.

The show features wildfowl carvings, artwork, collectibles and hunting items from many vendors. Retriever demonstrations will be at 10 a.m. and noon on September 15 and at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. on September 16. Two different retriever clubs will display their dogs' abilities. Demonstrations on Saturday will be performed by the Keystone Retriever Club, and on Sunday, by the Northern Piedmont Retriever Club. Decoy competitions will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, and winners will be announced at 4 p.m. Carvers may enter their creations into different categories to include decorative, working and shorebird gunning rigs. Each year, a different duck is chosen for the decorative competition. This year, the blue-winged teal was selected. Pennsylvania State Duck and Goose Calling Championships will be held at 1 p.m. on Sunday. The winner of the duck calling competition will likely go to the world duck calling championship in Stuttgart, Arkansas, and the winner of the goose calling competition will likely go to the world goose calling championship in Easton, Maryland. On September 23 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Middle Creek will host a National Hunting and Fishing Day celebration. Planned events include hands-on activities for people of all ages. Activities include exhibits/displays from local, state, and national sportsmen's organizations; archery shoot; muzzleloading rifles; and upland bird dog and trapping demonstrations. There will be roasted venison for visitors to sample, courtesy of the Izaak Walton League. Additionally, Red Creek Rehabers will conduct live birds of prey demonstrations at noon and 3 p.m. Another highlight will be the laser SHOT system, available for kids of all ages to try. The SHOT system is a simulated hunting experience to test an individual’s marksmanship and decision-making in hunting situations. In 1970, the first to suggest an official “day of thanks” to sportsmen was Ira Joffe, owner of Joffe’s Gun Shop in Upper Darby, Delaware County. Gov. Raymond Shafer adopted Joffe’s idea and created “Outdoor Sportsman’s Day” in the state. With determined prompting from various sportsmen, the concept soon emerged on the national level when, in early 1972, Congress unanimously passed legislation authorizing a National Hunting and Fishing Day. On May 2, 1972, President Richard Nixon signed the first proclamation of National Hunting and Fishing Day, and soon after, all 50 governors and more than 600 mayors had joined in by proclaiming state and local versions of National Hunting and Fishing Day. Hawk Mountain Celebrates Vultures On September 1 Hawk Mountain will join conservationists worldwide to celebrate International Vulture Awareness Day on September 1 in Kempton, Berks County. The event at the world-famous sanctuary will include a live vulture presentation at noon by Red Creek Environmental Center, a children’s monitoring project at the lookouts, an “Eating like a Vulture” activity, vulture-themed information and merchandise in the Visitor Center, and information about the Sanctuary’s own farranging scientific studies. Hawk Mountain educators hope to illustrate the amazing adaptations of the winged scavengers, including their incredible sense of smell, the ability to soar for hours without

flapping, and guts of sheer steel that allow them to digest and destroy disease agents such as cholera and even anthrax. Other carrion-eaters such as rats and dogs would spread contamination whereas the much-maligned vulture reduces or eliminates it. In essence, the birds are nature’s greatest clean-up crew. At the lookout, children may use a complimentary monitoring card to track the number of black and turkey vultures, and staff and volunteers that day will help to point out the large soaring birds. Everyone on the lookout that day also will be encouraged to watch for wingtagged vultures, locally-tagged birds that are part of the Sanctuary’s long-term study. Children who participate and turn in their data collection card will be eligible to win a plush vulture. International Vulture Awareness Day was launched two years ago to draw attention to one of the greatest wildlife catastrophes of recent time: the sudden and massive drop in the tens of millions of vultures that once soared across south Asia and India. Today, three vulture species in India have seen precipitous declines—one as high as 99 percent—caused by toxins in the environment. In Africa, too, vultures are in decline due to deliberate poisoning, loss of habitat and their use in traditional medicines. In short, Old World vultures (those outside the Americas) are in big trouble, and in response, Hawk Mountain biologists in 2007 launched its own study to build critically-needed baseline data on the winged scavengers. Today, Hawk Mountain is working with partners across the United States and Canada, Central and South America, and in Europe and East Africa to build a better snapshot of vulture biology and movement. The work will allow Sanctuary scientists to recognize similar drops in species numbers should one ever occur here or elsewhere. The latest research will begin this year on the hooded vulture, the most widespread species of vulture in Africa. Here the Sanctuary hopes to take the first steps in stopping declines on the African continent by providing information on vulture movements, behaviors and habitat needs. The work will take place in four countries across the species range: Ghana, Senegal, Ethiopia and Kenya. Perhaps the biggest goal of International Vulture Awareness Day is to simply increase appreciation for the birds’ grace, importance, and interesting social behaviors. For example, vultures keep the landscape free of carcasses, which in turn reduces the spread of disease such as anthrax and botulism. Their ability to efficiently remove waste helps to control populations of rats, feral dogs, coyotes and hyenas, which in turn reduces even more disease. For example, when vulture numbers dropped in South Asia and India, the number of wild dogs, cases of rabies and death from rabies increased proportionally. For more information, visit the International Vulture Awareness Day webpage or the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary website. Here, too, visitors may read updates from researchers in the field on the Sanctuary’s blog, The Vulture Chronicles, and track near-real-time satellite tracking images of our tagged vultures. Appalachian Audubon Society Native Plant Sale Sept. 15 Fall is a great time for planting! Cooler temperatures allow plants to get established and grow new roots without the stress of summer heat. The Appalachian Audubon Society will hold its annual Native Plant Sale on September 15 at the Meadowood Nursery in Hummelstown near Harrisburg. The Nursery grows

approximately 300 species of herbaceous and woody plants native to the Pennsylvania geographic region. Native plants need less water than non-natives, don’t require fertilizer or pesticides, and provide food for birds, butterflies, and other wildlife that pass through or nest in our neighborhoods. Restoring plants that are native to a given region contributes to re-establishing a healthier ecosystem. All Meadowood plants are container grown; none taken from the wild. Enjoy browsing the nursery where volunteers will help you make selections for your yard. Click Here for details. 10th Anniversary Of Acopian Center At Hawk Mountain Sept. 8 Hawk Mountain Sanctuary will host a 10th anniversary open house at its Acopian Center for Conservation Learning on September 8 from 2 to 4 p.m. The Acopian Center is a biological field station and training site and is headquarters for the conservation science program at Hawk Mountain. The Center is located at 410 Summer Valley Road along Route 895 in Orwigsburg, just two miles from the Sanctuary’s mountaintop Visitor Center. The Acopian Center opened September 7, 2002, thanks to the generosity and vision of benefactor Mr. Sarkis Acopian for whom the building is named. The three-building facility is normally closed to the public, so this is a unique chance to tour the grounds and see the buildings. Visitors are invited to stop in and meet Sanctuary scientists and international interns, and to see the Scientist Residence, Intern Residence and Research Center, as well as the impressive library, reading room, teaching lab, GIS mapping lab and conference space. The 43-acre site is surrounded by open meadows and so also offers great bird watching and a scenic view looking up at the Hawk Mountain ridge. Following the open house, a 5 p.m. lecture will be held at the Hawk Mountain Visitor Center, 1700 Hawk Mountain Road, Kempton (2 miles from Acopian Center). This free slideshow will be presented by Dr. Keith Bildstein, the Sarkis Acopian Director of Conservation Science, and will share more details about Hawk Mountain and its far-reaching programs to train young raptor biologists, and to conduct global research projects that help protect birds of prey worldwide. Dr. Bildstein will explain how the Acopian Center has transformed the science program at Hawk Mountain, and helped it to double its internship program and expand research and opportunities for collaboration. Click Here to visit the Hawk Mountain YouTube Channel. Spotlight- PA Mussels Used To Help Restore Streams In Other States A joint effort between federal and state agencies, including the Fish and Boat Commission, has resulted in the successful collection and relocation of approximately 4,000 state and federal endangered northern riffleshell mussels from a site on the Allegheny River along the border of Forest and

Venango counties. The mussels – collected over a two-day period August 21-22 – were expected to be adversely affected by the Hunter Station Bridge replacement project, located along State Route 62 in Tionesta, Forest County. When the project begins, cofferdams and causeways will be constructed in the river and the old bridge will be dropped. (Photo courtesy Jim Carroll/PennDOT) These actions would likely have killed thousands of the mussels, but the salvage efforts have been able to save the resource and put it to use in other states. “The mussels have been transported to Illinois, Ohio, and West Virginia, where they will be used to strengthen existing northern riffleshell populations and to establish new populations in some of the waterways where they historically occurred,” said PFBC biologist Jordan Allison, who assised with the recovery. “These efforts are being monitored carefully to ensure that the reintroductions are successful, and the information gathered will be used to further species recovery efforts in the future.” States and provinces in which the northern riffleshell can be found include: Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ontario. However, in recent years, the number of northern riffleshell populations outside of Pennsylvania has decreased significantly. “The middle Allegheny River contains the world’s most extensive known population of northern riffleshell,” Jordan added. “Though it is listed as an endangered species in Pennsylvania, the population at this site has been identified as a source of animals for species recovery efforts due to the planned replacement of the Hunters Station Bridge.” The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service led the recovery effort through its field offices in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and West Virginia and its Ohio River Islands National Wildlife Refuge. Other partners included the PFBC; Department of Transportation; Columbus Zoo and Aquarium’s Freshwater Mussel Conservation Facility; Illinois Natural History Survey; Illinois Department of Natural Resources; and W.V. Department of Natural Resources. Mussels are an integral part of a healthy ecosystem providing humans and other animals with many services free of charge. Mussels are filter feeders, meaning they obtain food by taking in gallons of water per day to filter out suspended particles leaving the water in our streams and rivers clearer. Live and dead mussel shells provide many aquatic organisms with habitat that is necessary for their survival. Mussels also serve as food for some species of birds, mammals, reptiles, and fish. “Throughout the world, mussels are the most imperiled group of organisms,” said PFBC malacologist Nevin Welte, who specializes in the study of mollusks. “At one time in the U.S., there were nearly 300 different species of freshwater mussels. Of these, 67 were known to be from Pennsylvania. Currently, 54 species of mussels remain in the state, representing a 19% loss in the number of mussel species that historically occurred within our borders.” Of the 54 species remaining, seven are on the Pennsylvania endangered species list, and two are on the Pennsylvania threatened species list. Freshwater mussels have declined due to water pollution, changes in water quantity (floods, drought, dams, and irrigation), loss of habitat (dams, dredging, waterway channelization, and bridges), and competition with invasive species such as the zebra mussel.

“Along with our partners, we are hopeful that establishing new populations of northern riffleshell in multiple states will be a large step forward in promoting the recovery of this species,” said Welte, who notes that current state regulations prevent the collection of any freshwater mussels from waters of the Commonwealth and state and federal regulations prohibit the unauthorized collection of endangered species. For more information, Click Here to download a backgrounder on freshwater mussels. Fish & Boat Commission Photo Contest Deadline Dec. 31 The Fish & Boat Commission annually holds a photo contest for a number of fishing and boating related categories. The deadline to submit photos is December 31. Click Here for details and the entry form. Presque Isle Named Among Nation’s Top State Parks for Fishing, Boating Anglers and boaters have named Presque Isle State Park in Erie County among the nation’s best state parks for fishing and boating in a national competition sponsored by the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation. Presque Isle State Park is a 3,200-acre sandy peninsula that arches into Lake Erie. As Pennsylvania's only “seashore,” Presque Isle offers its visitors a beautiful coastline and many recreational activities. “There’s a lot of family fun happening at Presque Isle through easy, affordable access, and quality fishing, boating and other water sports,” Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Richard Allan said. “Those qualities are the keystone of this friendly competition, and they embody why Presque Isle State Park draws more than 3.7 million visitors each year – more visitors than some national parks receive.” “Pennsylvanians and out-of-state tourists have long enjoyed the beauty of Presque Isle State Park and the wide range of family-friendly fishing and boating opportunities it offers,” said Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director John Arway. “This contest demonstrates what we’ve always known -- that Presque Isle ranks among the nation’s best state parks for outdoor recreation.” Sponsored as part of its “Take Me Fishing” campaign, the foundation hosted the eightweek-long promotion, “Nature’s Waterpark Showdown,” to boost state park awareness and participation in the boating and fishing they offer. Beginning June 5, more than 150,000 Take Me Fishing Facebook fans voted on their favorite park for boating and fishing in one of eight regions of the United States. Presque State Park led the Northeast sector. Other designated areas and selected leading parks were: Southwest: Lake Murray State Park, Oklahoma; Great Lakes: Itasca State Park, Minnesota; Southwest: Blue Spring State Park, Florida; Midwest: El Dorado State Park, Kansas; West Mountain: Cave Lake State Park, Nevada; Southern: Fall Creek Falls State Park, Tennessee; and North Atlantic, Wellington State Park, New Hampshire. In announcing the Northeast’s winner, the foundation noted, “Presque Isle offers its visitors a beautiful coastline and many recreational activities, including swimming, boating, fishing, hiking, bicycling and in-line skating. The gateway to Presque Isle is the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, an educational center at heart, dedicated to teaching visitors about

Presque Isle and the many different forms of life that inhabit this unique peninsula ...” Boaters find four free park launches at Presque Isle. The launches, along with abundant piers and miles of beach and other shoreline, offer easy access to Lake Erie and Presque Isle Bay and their populations of bass, walleye, muskellunge, Northern pike, steelhead and other trout, and a wide variety of pan fish. “Families are looking for unique, affordable trips,” said foundation President and Chief Operating Officer Frank Peterson. “The ‘Nature’s Waterpark Showdown’ winners are just a few examples of enjoyable fishing and boating hot spots right in your own back yard that you can visit with your family.” With 7,804 state parks across the United States, benefits of sampling water-based activities at these parks go beyond quality family time and exposure to nature, Peterson noted. Funds from fishing license sales and boat registration help preserve natural places and aid aquatic conservation efforts, he said. Since 2007, the Take Me Fishing campaign has generated nearly $30 million for state conservation efforts. The campaign increases awareness of the need to protect, conserve and restore the nation’s aquatic resources by encouraging participation in recreational boating and fishing. For details on Presque Isle’s selection, visit the Nature’s Waterpark Showdown webpage. NewsClip: Presque Islae State Park Named Top Fishing, Boating Park Help Wanted: Appalachian Trail Conservancy Environmental Planner The Appalachian Trail Conservancy is seeking candidates to fill a full-time Environmental Planner position. The deadline for applying is September 10. Click Here for details. Help Wanted: PennFuture Central PA Outreach Coordinator Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future is seeking qualified applicants for a full-time Outreach Coordinator in Central Pennsylvania to coordinate the Choose Clean Water Campaign. Click Here for details. To apply, send a cover letter, resume, two writing samples and a list of at least three references by September 7 to Heather Sage, Vice President, by email to: sage@pennfuture.org.

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. September 3- PA Parks & Forest Foundation Photo Contest September 17-- FirstEnergy STEM Education Grants September 26-- PA Recycling Markets Center Heenan Markets Development Award September 26-- DEP Small Business Advantage Grant Program October 1-- DEP Recycling Performance Grants October 15-- DEP Coastal Zone Management Grants October 19-- NRCS Farm Conservation Programs October 19-- PEMA Fire Company & Volunteer Ambulance Service Grants

October 30-- Schuylkill River Network Photo Contest October 31-- PA Resources Council Lens On Litter Contest November 2-- PHFA Marcellus Shale Housing Grants December 14-- EPA College Campus RainWorks Challenge December 31-- NEW. Fish & Boat Commission Photo Contest May 1-- Keep PA Beautiful Sue Wiseman Scholarship Grant -- Visit the DEP Grants and Loan Programs webpage for more ideas on how to get financial assistance for environmental projects.

Budget/Quick Clips
Here's a selection of NewClips on environmental topics from around the state-Budget Congressional Sleight Of Hands Makes Reclamation Funds Disappear Lycoming County Studies Impact Fee Uses Drilling Fees To Midstate Counties Could Top $6.7 Million Nonprofits Invest As Public Funds Dwindle Column: Who Pays Tax For Natural Gas Cars? Other DEP Issues Draft Permit Review Process Policy Overhauled DEP Permit Rules Would Streamline Reviews Drug Disposal Box Unveiled In Erie Courthouse Op-Ed: Romney Has Right Energy Policy - Corbett State Energy Savings Loan Program Makes 10,000th Loan Enduring Hydro Purchases Mahoning Creek Project Hydroelectric Firms Plan Armstrong Dam Project Overheating Smart Meters Probed By PECO Could Coal Gasification Breathe New Life Into Coal Restarting Monessen Coke Plant Depends On Permits Clearing The Air At Shenango Coke Plant Homer City Power Plant Upgrade OK’d Defense Logistics Agency Breaks Ground For Green Building Issac, Refinery Fire Expected To Affect Gasoline Prices Gas Prices Make Biggest 1-Day Jump In 18 Months Editorial: New Vehicle Fuel Standards Will Create Jobs Trout Unlimited Honors Adams County Coordinator Bear Population, Human Interaction On Rise Presque Islae State Park Named Top Fishing, Boating Park Piecing Together An Ambitious Trail Cumberland Valley Rail Trail To Double In Length Community Volunteers To Cleanup Waverly Playground Luzerne Man Dies From West Nile Virus Positive West Nile Samples Double Op-Ed: Weather And West Nile

Panel Discussions Focus For 9/11 Op-Ed: My Visit To The Flight 93 Memorial

Marcellus Shale NewsClips
Here are NewsClips on topics related to Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling--Op-Ed: Romney Has Right Energy Policy - Corbett Long Fight Over Fracking Still Divides Dimock After 3 Months, Methane Still Leaking In Bradford DEP Proposes Stronger Rules To Regulate Drilling Update Of Gas, Oil Regulations Mostly Supported Chesapeake Energy’s PA Drilling Data Filled With Errors PA Production Of Natural Gas Keeps Growing Drilling Zoning Ruling Will Be On Merits Senator Says Local Group Challenges New Rules For Drilling DEP Chief Defends Marcellus Zoning Law Hopewell Watches Drilling Cycle As State’s Most-Drilled Twp Robinson Joins PA Townships Under PUC Marcellus Review Lycoming County Studies Impact Fee Uses Drilling Fees To Midstate Counties Could Top $6.7 Million Wall Street Journal Maps Local Fracking Bans In NY Penn State Begins New Monthly Marcellus Webinar Series Column: Who Pays Tax For Natural Gas Cars? Shell’s Cracker Tax Break Means Lost Revenue For Beaver Shale Gas Activity Fuels Growth In Lehigh Valley Companies Equitable’s Plan To Use More Local Gas Challenged Fractivism Becomes A Full-Time Job For Retirees WITF StateImpact PA Shale Play App Available Drilled Wells In PA By Watershed Financial/Other States NY To Rule On Fracking, Could Affect Delaware Basin Drillers Rattled As Ethane, Propane Prices Plunge

Flooding/Watershed NewsClips
Here are NewsClips on watershed topics from around the state-Flooding Towns Struggle One Year After Hurricane Irene Hurricane Irene Among Worst PA Storms Back From Flood, Kmart Reopens Monday Over $1 Million In Federal Flood Repairs In Wyoming Other Watershed NewsClips Drought Watch Lifted In Western PA Susquehanna Reservoirs Near Sediment Capacity

Officials To Tour Abandoned Mines In Lackawanna, Luzerne How Allentown Water, Sewer Lease Would Affect Suburbs

Regulations, Technical Guidance & Permits
No new regulations were published this week. Pennsylvania Bulletin - September 1, 2012 Proposed Regulations Open For Comment - DEP webpage Proposed Regulations With Closed Comment Periods - DEP webpage DEP Regulatory Agenda - DEP webpage

Technical Guidance & Permits
The Department of Environmental Protection published a notice of proposed guidance dealing with guaranteed permit reviews, permit coordination, disadvantage business enterprise solicitations and drinking water and wastewater systems operator certification handbook. DEP also published a notice of certification requests under the Nutrient Credit Trading Program. Draft: DEP ID: 021-2100-001. Policy for Implementing the Department Permit Review Process and Permit Decision Guarantee. On July 24, 2012, Governor Corbett signed Executive Order 2012-11 ''Permit Decision Guarantee for the Department of Environmental Protection'' directing the Department to, among other things, establish a Permit Review Process and Permit Decision Guarantee. Draft: DEP ID: 021-2000-301. Policy for Permit Coordination. The Policy for Permit Coordination, issued as final on October 22, 2005, outlines how the Department will coordinate the review of multiple permits for proposed projects to ensure efficient use of its resources, thorough environmental review and consistent Department action on proposed projects before the commencement of operations, construction or other activities that require Department permits or approvals. Draft: DEP ID: 382-5511-014. Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Firm Solicitation Guidance. This document is intended to provide guidance to recipients of Federal grant or loan funds under the State Revolving Loan Fund and the Special Appropriation Act Programs to ensure compliance with Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program contract administration requirements. Draft: DEP ID: 391-2300-001. Drinking Water and Wastewater Systems Operator Certification Program Handbook. This document is a handbook to help drinking water and wastewater system operators, both certified and noncertified and owners understand their requirements defined by the Drinking Water and Wastewater Systems Operator Certification Act and the Chapter 302 regulations, Administration of the Drinking Water and Wastewater Systems Operator Certification Program.

Technical Guidance Comment Deadlines - DEP webpage Copies Of Draft Technical Guidance - DEP webpage Copies of Final Technical Guidance - DEP webpage

Calendar Of Events
Upcoming legislative meetings, conferences, workshops, plus links to other online calendars. Meetings are in Harrisburg unless otherwise noted. NEW means new from last week. Go to the online Calendar webpage. Click on Agenda Released on calendar entries to see the NEW meeting agendas published this week. September 6-- House Republican Policy Committee hearing on coal-fired power plants, the coal industry and environmental regulations. Saint Vincent College, Fred M. Rodgers Building, Westmoreland County. 10:00. September 11-- CANCELED. DEP Storage Tank Advisory Committee meeting. Next scheduled meeting is December 4. (formal notice) September 12-- DEP Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee meeting. Room 105 Rachel Carson Building. 9:15. (formal notice) September 12-- NEW. Delaware River Basin Commission meeting. West Trenton, NJ. 11:00. (formal notice-agenda) September 18-- NEW. House Finance Committee holds a hearing on House Bill 2183 (D.EvansD-Philadelphia) creating a renewable energy job creation tax credit. Room G-50 Irvis Building. 1:00. September 18-- House Local Government Committee holds a hearing on Senate Bill 1261 (Erickson-R-Delaware) further providing for stormwater management by municipal authorities. Room 140. 1:00. September 18-- CANCELED. Environmental Quality Board meeting. Next scheduled meeting is October 16. September 18-- DEP Citizens Advisory Council meeting. Room 105 Rachel Carson Building. 11:00. September 18-- CANCELED. DEP Board of Coal Mine Safety meeting. Next scheduled meeting is December 11. (formal notice)

September 20-- NEW. Susquehanna River Basin Commission meeting. Hearing Room 1, North Office Building. 8:30. (formal notice-agenda) October 5-- Senate Game and Fisheries Committee holds a hearing on PA Sea GrantPharmaceuticals in Water Program and Asian Carp. Tom Ridge Environmental Center, Erie. 9:00. DEP Calendar of Events Note: The Environmental Education Workshop Calendar is no longer available from the PA Center for Environmental Education because funding for the Center was eliminated in the FY 2011-12 state budget. The PCEE website was also shutdown, but some content was moved to the PA Association of Environmental Educators' website. Senate Committee Schedule House Committee Schedule

You can watch the Senate Floor Session and House Floor Session live online.

Stories Invited
Send your stories, photos and links to videos about your project, environmental issues or programs for publication in the PA Environment Digest to: DHess@CrisciAssociates.com. PA Environment Digest is edited by David E. Hess, former Secretary Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and is published as a service of Crisci Associates, a Harrisburgbased government and public affairs firm whose clients include Fortune 500 companies and nonprofit organizations. For more information, visit the newly updated Crisci Associates website or call 717-234-1716. PA Environment Digest weekly was the winner of the PA Association of Environmental Educators' 2009 Business Partner of the Year Award. Also sign up for these other services from Crisci Associates-PA Environment Digest Twitter Feed: On Twitter, sign up to receive instant updates from: PAEnviroDigest. PA Environment Daily Blog: provides daily environmental NewsClips and significant stories and announcements on environmental topics in Pennsylvania of immediate value. Sign up and receive as they are posted updates through your favorite RSS reader. You can also sign up for a once daily email alerting you to new items posted on this blog. PA Environment Digest Video Blog: showcases original and published videos from environmental groups and agencies around the state. Sign up to receive as they are posted updates through your favorite RSS read. You can also sign up for a once daily email alerting you to new items posted on this blog.

PA Capitol Digest: Don't forget to sign up to receive the PA Capitol Digest Twitter feed by going to: www.Twitter.com/PaCapitolDigest or click on this link for the regular daily PA Capitol Digest Blog to get other news from in and around the Pennsylvania State Capitol.

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.