BWA Environmental Alerts
What you need to know in environmental news
Study Finding Microplastics In 100% Of Exceptional Value, High Quality, Class A Trout Streams Sampled In PA
PennEnvironment Research & Policy Center released a study finding 100 percent of the 50 water samples from Exceptional Value, High Quality, and Class A Cold Water Trout Fishing streams contained microplastics.
CLICK HERE to read the full article in the PA Environment Digest Blog.
Comments on Transco Regional Energy Access Expansion Project’s Revised Applications for Permits for Water Obstructions and Encroachments and for Erosion and Sediment Control
BWA commented in opposition to permit requests for the expansion of the Transco natural gas pipeline.
CLICK HERE to read the full letter.
BWA Comments on Pocono Manor Investors NPDES Permit Renewal, for Pocono Manor Investors, PT1 LP; Application # PA0029149
BWA commented in opposition of an NPDES septic wastewater discharge into the exceptional value EV Swiftwater Creek by Pocono Manor Investors.
CLICK HERE to read the full letter.
BWA comments on the Hamilton, Stroud, Pocono, Stroudsburg (HSPS) Regional Comprehensive Plan
BWA was particularly pleased to see the Action items related to managing land use regionally and cooperatively. CLICK HERE to read our comments and recommendations.
BWA co-signs comments on Proposed Amendment of Zoning Ordinance Sections 155-5 and 15 Adding Country Resort as a Permitted Use to Zoning District OS: Open Space/Resource Conservation
Brodhead Watershed Association comments on Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC – FERC Docket No CP21-94-000
The Brodhead Watershed Association suggested three amendments to the development plan in response to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (“FERC’s”) request for comments on the EIS. BWA also supplied a list of suggestions related to the EIS.
CLICK HERE to read our recommendations for the protection of local water and wildlife.
BWA writes PennDOT to request complete Environmental Impact Statement for I-80 expansion project
“While BWA appreciates the length of the EA report and supplemental documentation, BWA is of the opinion that a complete Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is necessary for a project of this magnitude. The content of the submitted EA report is woefully inadequate or a project of this scope.” CLICK HERE to read the letter.
Tobyhanna Township proposes amendments to its zoning ordinance regarding “country resorts”
The ordinance, as currently written, could allow for 100 cottages in 100 acres, or a cottage per acre. Forest clearing, habitat fragmentation, light pollution, sewage plants and stormwater discharges may directly impact sensitive ecosystems. CLICK HERE for details.
BWA opposes the proposed Swiftwater Solar land development plan
The amount of earth disturbance, deforestation and stormwater runoff generated by this proposal would significantly jeopardize the water quality of the Swiftwater & Pocono Creeks. CLICK HERE to read our letter to municipal officials.
Group Editorial: Readers share their take on climate change in the Poconos
BWA contributes to the discussion. Click here and look for the entry “The threat of climate change on our area is not trivial.”
Farms and forests are short-sighted locations for solar projects
Most solar farm projects in Pennsylvania have been proposed for farms and forestland. These locations are not only short-sighted and counter-intuitive to tackling climate change, they have the potential to lead to a cascade of other negative ecological impacts. READ MORE HERE
Chemical mixtures are common in small streams in the U.S.
Presence of mixtures a concern for aquatic life in many streams. Read more here from Science Direct.
Where solar arrays shouldn’t go is as critical as where they do go
Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia are projected to collectively add more than 6,200 megawatts of solar power over the next five years, tripling current generation capacity, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.
This is clearly good news.
But because the production of power from solar sources requires a substantial dedication of space — roughly 5 to 10 acres per megawatt produced — where and how we create this important clean energy must be crucial elements of any decision-making concerning its development. Read more from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
Big Oil evaded regulation and plastic pellets kept spilling
Oil and gas companies make enough pellets each year to fill a stadium several times over. The oil industry has long known it has a pellet pollution problem, but that’s not what it’s told the public. Click here for NPR’s story.
Carbon pollution ‘costs are high’
BWA Executive Director Kelly Gallo testified on the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Click here to read her testimony to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
A green solution to an aging stormwater system
Climate change means more floods, which overwhelm urban sewers and send raw sewage into rivers and streams. Philadelphia is aiming to capture rainwater before it flows into city drains. Click here to read the article.
House GOP wants to ‘Energize PA.’ Environmentalists say ‘no thanks.’
How Turzai’s going-away present to the gas industry will hurt Pa. for years to come. Click here to read the article.
PHARMACEUTICALS COMMON IN SMALL STREAMS IN U.S.
Testing shows nicotine, painkillers and more present. READ MORE HERE.
CLIMATE CHANGE CALL FOR ACTION
DEP Secretary McDonnell: The Time For Action On Climate Change Is Now – And The People Of Pennsylvania Know It … READ MORE HERE.
SHAD, TROUT, INVASIVES
What three kinds of Delaware River fish reveal about our region … READ MORE HERE
2°C: BEYOND THE LIMIT
Extreme climate change has arrived in America … READ MORE HERE
ENVIRONMENTALISTS WIN BATTLE TO PROTECT ‘EXCEPTIONAL’ STREAMS IN THE POCONOS
A group of resort owners had challenged DEP’s new classification of headwater streams in Monroe County … READ MORE HERE
MY TURN: EXCEPTIONAL WATERS DEFINE THE POCONOS AND DESERVE PROTECTION
A new vision for Pocono tourism is now being touted, one that PennFuture and several of our local partners, neighbors and advocates do not support. This vision translates into major development schemes that will change the region. … READ MORE HERE
YOUR MORNING CUP OF COFFEE IS IN DANGER. CAN THE INDUSTRY ADAPT IN TIME?
As temperatures rise and droughts intensify, good coffee will become increasingly difficult to grow and expensive to buy. …READ MORE HERE
PENNSYLVANIA SUPREME COURT ADDRESSES AGENCY DEFERENCE AND THE ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS AMENDMENT IN RULING ON UNCONVENTIONAL WELL DRILLING REGULATIONS
Earlier this month, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part a preliminary injunction issued by the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court with respect to newly promulgated regulations regarding unconventional well drilling. … READ MORE ON LEXOLOGY
BEE KIND: GO NATIVE IN YOUR GARDEN
Bees are in decline, and that’s a big deal .. READ MORE HERE
DWGNRA ACQUIRES FORMER GIRL SCOUT CAMP
1000 acres added to park … READ MORE HERE
LETTER: THANKS FOR CREEK CLEAN-UP
Addressing the pellet problem … READ MORE HERE
LETTER: COMMUNITIES BENEFIT FROM CLEAN STREAMS
How lucky we are to have clean, healthy waters … READ MORE HERE
WHY CLEAN STREAM PROTECTIONS MATTER IN THE POCONOS
Exceptional Value streams: What are they, and why do they matter to you? …READ MORE HERE
WILLIAN PENN FOUNDATION GIVES $42 MILLION TO PROTECT DELAWARE RIVER
TRUCK CRASHES, DUMPS 49,000 POUNDS OF PLASTIC PELLETS INTO POCONO CREEK
A chain-reaction crash spilled almost 49,000 pounds of small blue recycled-plastic pellets into Pocono Creek on Saturday. … READ MORE HERE
STUDY: PENNSYLVANIA 2ND WORST IN NATION IN WATERWAY INDUSTRIAL POLLUTION
Most of the pollution is in eastern Pennsylvania. … READ MORE HERE
CLEAN WATER AND RESPONSIBLE DEVELOPMENT ARE A NATURAL IN THE POCONOS
An op-ed in the Pocono Record by Jacquelyn Bonomo, president and CEO of PennFuture
STRAIGHT TALK ABOUT THE FINANCIAL CONDITION OF THE FISH & BOAT COMMISSION
An enlightening op-ed by John A. Arway, executive director of the Fish & Boat Commission
PETITION TO PROTECT OUR STREAMS
BWA and PennFuture are intervening in an appeal before the Environmental Hearing Board, seeking to protect the Exceptional Value water quality of six streams in Monroe County, including Cranberry Creek, Paradise Creek, Devil’s Hole Creek, Tank Creek, Swiftwater Creek, and Tunkhannock Creek. … READ MORE HERE
MCCD WORKSHOP TO HELP BUILDERS, ENGINEERS, DESIGNERS WORK WITHIN REGULATIONS TO BENEFIT ENVIRONMENT
Workshop “will highlight the disconnect that sometimes occurs between design engineers and the guys who are actually building” the project. … READ MORE HERE
WE’RE NOT EVEN CLOSE TO BEING PREPARED FOR THE RISING WATERS
“For the 10,000 years of human civilization, we’ve been blessed with a relatively stable climate, and hence flooding has been an exceptional terror. As that blessing comes to an end with our reckless heating of the planet, the exceptional is becoming all too normal.” … READ MORE FROM THE WASHINGTON POST
THE BOOMTOWN THAT SHOULDN’T EXIST
“Cape Coral, Fla., was built on total lies. One big storm could wipe it off the map. Oh, and it’s also the fastest-growing city in the United States.” … READ MORE FROM POLITICO
HOUSE GOP PLAN TO EMPTY ENVIRONMENTAL FUNDS MEANS NOT PAYING 900 GRANTS ALREADY AWARDED
A plan by a group of conservative House Republicans lead by Rep. Dan Moul (R-Adams) to empty environmental special funds and transfer the money to the General Fund will mean not paying communities for all or part of at least 900 grants for local projects already approved and underway over the last two years. … READ MORE FROM PA ENVIRONMENT DIGEST
LAWSUIT: ‘NOT ONE DROP’ OF POLAND SPRING BOTTLED WATER IS FROM A SPRING
Poland Spring, the country’s best-selling bottled water, is “a colossal fraud,” according to a class-action lawsuit. … READ MORE FROM THE WASHINGTON POST
A TEXAS FARMER ON HARVEY, BAD PLANNING AND RUNAWAY GROWTH
An opinion piece by East Stroudsburg author and journalist Seamus McGraw. … READ MORE FROM THE NEW YORK TIMES
LETTER TO THE EDITOR: STATE BUDGET IGNORES NEED FOR CLEAN WATER
As former Vice President Joe Biden remarked, “Don’t tell me what you value, show me your budget, and I’ll tell you what you value.” The Pennsylvania State Legislature just sent a loud and clear message — we do not value clean, drinkable water. … READ MORE FROM THE POCONO RECORD
BOTTLING BUCK HILL WATER?
Buck Hill Falls Water Company has been in discussions with Niagara Bottling Company for selling bulk water … trucking it out of town to be bottled and sold. READ MORE ON THIS ISSUE at the Barrett Township website. CLICK HERE to see the Delaware River Basin Commission docket on the issue.
DELAWARE WATER GAP SHOWING EFFECTS OF CLIMATE CHANGE
BUSHKILL, Pa. – In the past 125 years, the Kittatinny Ridge has sunk – climatologically – about 600 feet and now the ridge-top has a climate more like northern Virginia was a century ago.
… READ MORE FROM THE NEW JERSEY HERALD
GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE: MANAGING STORMWATER RUNOFF AT MUNICIPAL LEVEL
If left unchecked, stormwater can add pollutants like soil, nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus), and pathogens into our streams and rivers. This may lead to health impacts, unsightly and unpleasantly smelling waterways, and a degraded environment. That is why there are laws in place for proper management of stormwater runoff. For a brief overview of those laws, with a special focus on municipal ordinances and the important role they play in stormwater management, click HERE.
To see how BWA has been building green infrastructure locally, click HERE.
LISTENING TOUR COMING THIS WAY
Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection is hosting an Environmental Justice Listening Tour, with the closest “focus area” stop on May 11 in Allentown. The public is strongly urged to attend. For information, read more HERE.
MONROE COUNTY CONSERVATION DISTRICT: THE BUILDER’S FRIEND
Local agency gives up partial enforcement duties, shifts focus
Monroe County Conservation District has decided to give up part of its local ability to enforce the environmental rules with a change to its nearly 20-year standard of delegation with the state Department of Environmental Protection. … READ MORE FROM THE POCONO RECORD