Tuesday, May 29, 2018

DEP To Name New Environmental Justice Director By End Of June

DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell told the Environmental Justice Advisory Board Tuesday a new Director of the Office of Environmental Justice will be named by the end of June and another position will be added to bring the Office up to a complement of four.
Some other quick updates from the meeting--
-- Permit Reforms: McDonnell said DEP is opposed to permitting “reform” bills moving through the General Assembly saying DEP has been addressing the issue of permit delays by increasing staff training, working more efficiently and is making significant progress.
-- EJ Policy Draft: DEP expects to formally release its revised, draft Environmental Justice Policy for public comment later in the summer after the new Director of the Office reviews it.
-- Electric Vehicle Roadmap: Under the discussion of the VW Settlement Driving PA Forward Initiative, DEP said it will release its final Electric Vehicle Roadmap in mid-summer.
-- Climate Plan: DEP hopes to have the next update of the Climate Change Action Plan done by the end of this year that will include an economically feasible greenhouse gas emission reduction goal.
Franklin Kury, the author of the legislation that became the Environmental Rights Amendment to the state constitution, gave a presentation to the Board on its origin, along with commentary on recent PA Supreme Court cases involving the Amendment.
The next scheduled meeting of the Board is July 10 via conference call.
For more information and available handouts, visit DEP’s  Environmental Justice Advisory Board webpage.  Questions should be directed to: John Brakeall, 717-783-9731 or send email to: jbrakeall@pa.gov.

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