Scrapbook Photo 02/26/24 - 91 New Stories - REAL Environmental & Conservation Leadership In PA:
Weekly PA Environment Digest Newsletter
February 26, 2024 - Issue #1,023
* 91 New Stories - REAL Environmental & Conservation Leadership In PA

Here are 91 new stories in the PA Environment Digest about individuals, groups, local governments, farmers, businesses, watershed groups and many more working all across Pennsylvania to restore and protect the environment and show others the beauty that surrounds us.

* Weekly List Of PA Environment & Energy Articles & NewsClips By Topic

PA Environment Digest Puts Links To The Best Environment & Energy Articles and NewsClips From Last Week Here By Topic--

* Penn State: Conventional Oil & Gas Wastewater Fails To Meet Beneficial Reuse Recommendations For Use As A Dust Suppressant

A team of researchers from Penn State published a new article in the journal Science of the Total Environment summarizing their research showing wastewater from conventional oil and gas wells fails to meet beneficial reuse criteria for use as road dust suppressants and poses “unique risks to environmental health.”

* Citizen Complaint Leads DEP To Breakout Of Mariner East Pipeline Drilling Mud That Contaminated The Lake At Marsh Creek State Park, Chester County; Sunoco Pipeline Starts Cleanup

In response to a citizen complaint on February 15, DEP inspected a tributary that feeds the lake at Marsh Creek State Park in Chester County on February 16 and found a clay-like material contaminating the stream and a portion of the nearby wetlands.

* PUC Adopts Final Regulations Strengthening Operation, Construction Requirements For Intrastate Hazardous Liquids Pipelines

On February 22, the Public Utility Commission approved a Final Form Rulemaking Order strengthening state public utility safety standards related to the pipeline transport of hazardous liquids in intrastate commerce.

* DEP Publishes Final Guidance On Environmental Consideration In Using Trenchless Technology To Construct Natural Gas, Other Pipelines

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice in the February 24 PA Bulletin the final technical guidance on using trenchless technology to construct natural gas, other pipelines and underground utilities is now available and effective.

* DEP Issues Chapter 105 Permit Correcting Violations By PA General Energy In Constructing The Shawnee Water Intake On The Exceptional Value Loyalsock Creek, Lycoming County

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice in the February 24 PA Bulletin saying it has issued a Chapter 105 permit to correct violations by PA General Energy in constructing the Shawnee Water Intake on the Exceptional Value Loyalsock Creek in Lycoming County. (PA Bulletin, page 1012)

* PA Oil & Gas Industrial Facilities: Permit Notices, Opportunities To Comment - February 24

The following DEP notices were published in the February 24 PA Bulletin related to oil and gas industry facilities.  Many of the notices offer the opportunity for public comments.

* PA Oil & Gas Weekly Compliance Dashboard - Feb. 17 to 23 -- 7 More Abandoned Conventional Wells; Defective Casing From 2018; Mariner Pipeline Drilling Mud Breakout; Additional Shell Air Penalties; Water Supply Investigation

From February 17 to 23, DEP’s Oil and Gas Compliance Database shows oil and gas inspectors filed 494 inspection entries (four day week due to federal holiday).

* DEP: Shell Petrochemical Plant Pays Additional $2,671,044.75 In Civil Penalties For 12-Month Air Quality Violations After May 2023 Consent Order

On February 22, the Department of Environmental Protection reported the Shell Petrochemical Plant in Beaver County paid an additional $2,671,044.75 in civil penalties for air quality violations occurring after the May 24, 2023 consent order.

* Western PA Residents Comment After A Year Of Shell Petrochemical Plant Operations

The following letters first appeared in the Beaver County Times in December and earlier in February.  They provide some useful insights on what some people in Western Pennsylvania are thinking about how the first year of operations went for the Shell Petrochemical Plant.

* DEP Environmental Justice Office Taking Lead In Developing $8 Million Monsanto PCB Penalty Community Fund As Part Of $100 Million Settlement

On February 21, Fernando Treviño, DEP Special Deputy Secretary for Environmental Justice, said DEP’s Office of Environmental Justice is taking the lead in developing a community fund as part of the $100 million PCB contamination settlement announced last September with Monsanto.

* Protect PT Hosts Feb. 27 Online Lunch & Learn With Laurie Barr About Abandoned Oil & Gas Wells

On February 27, Protect PT will host a program on YouTube featuring Laurie Barr from Save Our Streams PA talking about Abandoned Oil and Gas Wells starting at Noon.

* PJM, Electric Grid Operators Recommend Additional Steps To Overcome Vulnerabilities In Natural Gas Infrastructure To Ensure More Reliable Grid Operation

On February 21, the PJM Interconnection and three other regional electric grid operators made a series of 14 recommendations to overcome vulnerabilities in natural gas infrastructure operations to improve electric grid reliability and gas-electric coordination, especially during adverse weather conditions.

* DEP Recommends 6 Major Legislative Proposals Be Adopted As Part Of 2024 PA Climate Action Plan

On February 20, the Department of Environmental Protection presented six major legislative proposals to the Climate Change Advisory Committee it would like to see adopted to implement the 2024 PA Climate Action Plan.

* PUC To Seek Comments On Proposed Regulation On Use Of Distributed Energy Resources And Virtual Power Plants

On February 22, the Public Utility Commission issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANOPR) seeking comments from stakeholders and other concerned parties about the use of Distributed Energy Resources (DERs) as a mechanism to help increase energy efficiency, enhance service, and potentially lower costs.

* DEP: No Applicants Have Asked For Their Money Back Yet Under The PAyback Permit Review Money Back Guarantee Program

On February 21, DEP reported that since the state’s PAyback Money Back Permit Review Guarantee Program started on November 1, 2023, no applicant for a DEP permit in the program has requested their permit application fee back.

* DEP Posts Updated List Of Technical Guidance In Development To Promote Public Involvement

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice in the February 24 PA Bulletin an update to its Non-Regulatory Agenda  is now available showing the status of technical guidance in development.

* DEP Declares 57 Industrial Plants Meet Air Quality RACT Rules; Hearing Set For April 12

The Department of Environmental Protection published notice in the February 24 PA Bulletin inviting comments on its determination that 57 major industrial facilities across the state meet Air Quality RACT II and RACT III requirements and the 2015 national ozone pollution standard.

* New DEP Tools: Energy Funding, Assistance Finder Tool Available For Environmental Justice Communities, Organizations; Equitable Climate Action Program Development Tool

On February 21, DEP announced at the Environmental Justice Advisory Board meeting it has two new tools available to communities and organizations to find energy funding and develop equitable climate action programs.

* Wesley Family Services Cuts Ribbon On Rooftop Solar Energy System With West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund In Westmoreland County

On February 22, Wesley Family Services was joined by Westmoreland County Commissioner, Douglas Chew; West Penn Power Sustainable Energy Fund; and the PA Solar Center to cut the ribbon on its brand-new rooftop solar energy system at its Pioneer Apartments location, which was installed by local developer, EIS Solar.

* Feb. 28 Webinar: Meet Local Experts Making Our Communities Sustainable

The Conservation Voters of PA and PennFuture are hosting a February 28 webinar on the Local Experts Who Are Making Our Communities Sustainable starting at 6:00 p.m.

* Sustainable Pittsburgh Selected As 1 Of 10 Nationally To Advance To Phase 2 Of Quality Green Jobs Training Regional Challenge

Jobs for the Future and the Ares Charitable Foundation have chosen Sustainable Pittsburgh as one of ten organizations across the United States to advance to Phase 2 of the Quality Green Jobs Regional Challenge.

* DEP Set To Receive $2 Billion+ In Federal Funds Over Next Decade+ For Oil & Gas Well Plugging, Clean Energy, Climate Resiliency, Clean Water

On February 21, Louie Krak, DEP’s Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator briefed DEP’s Environmental Justice Advisory Board on the more than $2 billion in federal funding the agency expects to receive over the next decade or more to address legacy pollution problems-- conventional oil and gas well plugging, clean energy, climate resiliency and clean water.

* Over 400 PA Faith Leaders, Advocates Unite At First-Ever Statewide Interfaith Convention, Setting The Stage For Legislative Change On Climate, Justice & Jobs

On February 19, POWER Interfaith brought together hundreds of faith leaders, advocates, and community members at the Roadmap for Justice Interfaith Convention in Norristown, PA.

* Interfaith Partners For Chesapeake Faith & Waters Restoration Summit Attracts Nearly 200, Executive Director Jodi Rose Leaving For New Position

The Faith and Waters Restoration Summit hosted by the Interfaith Partners for the Chesapeake attracted nearly 200 participants from throughout the Chesapeake Bay region February 19 in Annapolis, MD.

* Master Watershed Steward Cindy Rogers Strengthens Partnerships In Indiana County

By Kelly Jedrzejewski, Penn State News

* PA Environmental Council, Aqua Pennsylvania Now Accepting Applications For New Protect Your Drinking Water Grant Program In Chester, Delaware Counties

On February 20, the PA Environmental Council and Aqua Pennsylvania are pleased to announce a new grant program aimed at improving the health of waterways that supply drinking water in Pennsylvania.

* Penn State Extension Watershed Winds: Webinars On Managing Natural Resources On Farms; Nutrient Retention On Pasture Lands; Art Gover Recognized; Other Educational Opportunities

The latest Watershed Winds newsletter from Penn State Extension highlights lots of upcoming learning opportunities.

* EPA Announces $200 Million+ For PA Drinking Water, Wastewater, Stormwater Infrastructure Upgrades

On February 20, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced over $200 million from the federal Investing in America program for Pennsylvania drinking water and clean water infrastructure upgrades.

* Centre County Recycling Coordinator Joanne Shafer To Retire; Longest Serving Recycling Coordinator In Pennsylvania

On February 19, the Centre County Recycling and Refuse Authority announced Joanne Shafter, Deputy Executive Director and County Recycling Coordinator will retire on February 29.

* Keep PA Beautiful: Sheila Shea, Fayette County Recycling Coordinator Recognized With Community Pride Award

On February 20, Keep PA Beautiful recognized Sheila Shea, Fayette County Recycling Coordinator, with the Community Pride Award.  She was nominated for the Award by Sen. Patrick Stefano (R-Fayette).

* WeConservePA: Land Conservancy Of Adams County Finalizes Three Projects Conserving Both Farmland And Historic Battlefield Area

The Land Conservancy of Adams County recently finalized easements on several parcels of land through collaboration with landowners, farmers, and a historic battlefield preservation organization.

* Natural Lands Transfers 31 Acres To State Forest In Berks, 29 Acres To Game Lands In Bucks

On February 20, Natural Lands announced the preservation of two properties that were transferred to state agencies. They provide critical habitat for migratory songbirds and other wildlife.

* South Mountain Partnership Spring Partnership Meeting & Science Summit, April 12; Mini-Grant Applications Due April 26

The South Mountain Partnership will host its Spring Partnership Meeting and Science Summit on April 12 at Shippensburg University.

* Hawk Mountain Sanctuary: The Third PA Bird Atlas Has Officially Fledged; Volunteers Needed

Birders of all ages and skill levels are joining forces across the state as part of the monumental effort to map the breeding and wintering status of bird species in Pennsylvania.

* Environment & Energy Educational Opportunities For Students & Adults

Opportunities to learn more about environmental and energy issues affecting Pennsylvania for students and adults--

* News From PA House & Senate

The information you need to follow legislation in the House and Senate- starting with articles and NewsClips from last week--

* The Feds

Articles and NewsClips about federal actions impacting Pennsylvania--

* Public Participation Opportunities/Calendar Of Events

Click Here for a list of public participation opportunities and a calendar of events.

* Grants & Awards

Click Here for grants, awards, recognition programs and contest deadlines.

* PA Bulletin Public Notices

Highlights of the environmental and energy notices in the February 24 PA Bulletin--

* Stories Invited - About PA Environment Digest

Send your stories, photos and links to videos about your project, environmental issues or programs for publication in the PA Environment Digest to:

* Supporting Member PA Organization For Watersheds & Rivers; PA Outdoor Writers Assn.; PA Trout Unlimited

PA Environment Digest is a supporting member of the PA Organization for Watersheds & Rivers, PA Outdoor Writers Association, PA Council Trout Unlimited and the Doc Fritchey Chapter Trout Unlimited.

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