Tuesday, June 16, 2015

DEP To Announce Pipeline Task Force Members Mid-July, Little Impact From EPA Water Rule

DEP Secretary John Quigley reported to the DEP’s Citizens Advisory Council Tuesday he expects the 34 members of the Pipeline Infrastructure Task Force to be announced by mid-July saying so far the agency has receive 150 applications for membership.
The Task Force will be charged with--
— Plan, site and route pipelines in ways that avoid or reduce environmental and community impacts;
-- Amplify and engage in meaningful public participation;
-- Maximize opportunities for predictable and efficient permitting;
-- Employ construction methods that reduce environmental and community impact;
-- Develop long-term operations and maintenance plans to ensure pipeline safety and integrity; and
-- Ensure pipeline safety and integrity during operation of the pipeline.
The final report of the Task Force is due in February.  Click Here for more information on the Task Force.
Waters Of U.S. Rule
Secretary Quigley said he did not expect any major impacts from the recently finalized Waters of the U.S. rule by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, noting Pennsylvania already had similar rules under the state’s Clean Streams Law.  He said the agency will be reviewing the final regulation.
In other comments, Quigley said--
-- EPA Clean Power Rule: Expects EPA to finalize the Clean Power Rule to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in August.
-- Abandoned Mine Program: DEP is soliciting comments from stakeholders through a recently posted survey on its website to help evaluate the effectiveness of the Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program in addition to an internal review.  He said the agency will publish an evaluation document as a result of the review, but did not give a timeframe.
-- 3rd Decade Of Brownfields Program: Noting the 20th anniversary of the Land Recycling Program, Quigley said they are looking to build on the program to include stormwater management and alternative energy components to move even further toward sustainable development.
A copy of DEP’s formal monthly report to Council is available online.
NOTE: The Council will now hold its July 21 meeting as well as a new meeting on August 18.
For more information, visit the DEP’s Citizens Advisory Council webpage.

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