Friday, May 28, 2021

Chesapeake Bay Foundation Praises Biden Proposed Budget Giving Chesapeake Bay Program Full Funding

On May 28, President Biden released a fiscal year 2022 budget request that would boost funding for the federal Chesapeake Bay Program to $90.5 million from its current level of
$87.5 million. This $3 million increase, if enacted, would result in full funding for the Program.  

The Program, which EPA administers, coordinates the federal-state-local partnership to save the Bay. Congress reauthorized it last fall in the America’s Conservation Enhancement (ACE) Act and set the fiscal 2022 funding level at $90.5 million. 

President Biden’s budget also emphasizes work to address climate change, resiliency, and environmental justice issues. 

The budget notes the Chesapeake Bay Program, specifically, will emphasize implementing the 2025 pollution reduction requirements, restoring and protecting forests and wetlands, maintaining underwater grasses, and implementing a plan to improve diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in the Program’s restoration efforts. 

“After four years of fighting for the very existence of the Chesapeake Bay Program, CBF is pleased the Biden administration appreciates the importance of fully funding it. With only four years left to hit the Chesapeake Clean Water Blueprint’s pollution-reduction targets, we are happy to see the Bay Program fully funded to lead the multijurisdictional effort to save the Bay and its waterways,” said Denise Stranko, CBF’s Federal Executive Denise Stranko  

“President Biden’s fiscal 2022 budget represents another promising step by the federal government toward helping the Bay jurisdictions meet the Blueprint’s 2025 deadline. CBF is committed to partnering with the administration and Congress to ensure we do what it takes to save this national treasure.” 

CBF President William C. Baker said, “With only four years to go to reach the 2025 deadline, the future of the Chesapeake Bay is in jeopardy. Saving the Bay requires swift, comprehensive action and determined leadership by President Biden and EPA Administrator Michael Regan. 

“We are encouraged. President Biden recognizes the importance of fully funding the Chesapeake Bay Program, mitigating climate change, and addressing environmental injustice. 

“The president’s fiscal 2022 budget is only the beginning. After four years of proposed cuts and rollbacks to programs, we have lost valuable time.  

“That’s why it is vital for EPA to use its Clean Water Act authorities to hold Pennsylvania and New York accountable for their deficient clean-up plans. Substantial new federal investments will be needed to help those states get back on track. 

“We urge President Biden and Congress to not only provide maximum funding for existing Bay programs, but to adopt the Billion for the Bay Initiative as well. [Read more here]

“The Blueprint is our last, best hope to save this national treasure. It requires the sustained, robust funding of the Billion for the Bay Initiative and strong federal leadership to succeed. A restored Bay legacy demands no less; we must think big and act now.”  

For more on Chesapeake Bay-related issues in Pennsylvania, visit the Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA webpage.  Click Here to sign up for Pennsylvania updates (bottom of left column).  Click Here to support their work.

Also visit the Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership to learn how you can help clean water grow on trees.

CBF has over 275,000 members in Bay Watershed.

PA Chesapeake Bay Plan

For more information on Pennsylvania’s plan, visit DEP’s Chesapeake Bay Office webpage.

How Clean Is Your Stream?

DEP’s Interactive Report Viewer allows you to zoom in on your own stream or watershed to find out how clean your stream is or if it has impaired water quality using the latest information in the draft 2020 Water Quality Report.

Resource Links - Biden Budget:

-- U.S. Environmental Protection Release On FY 2022 Budget Request

-- Federal Office Of Surface Mining Reclamation & Enforcement Release On Budget Request

-- U.S. Department Of Agriculture Release On FY 2022 Budget Request

-- White House Fact Sheet On Budget Request

-- FY 2022 President’s Budget Request

Related Articles - Federal Budget:

-- Biden's First Budget Makes Significant Investments In Abandoned Coal Mine Reclamation, Community Economic Development Efforts 

-- U.S. House Committee OKs Bipartisan Bills To Prevent Expiration Of Federal Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program, Expand Economic Development Opportunities 

-- Proposed Biden Budget Makes Historic Investments In EPA Programs To Support States, Environmental Justice, Science, Reverses Years Of Declining Budgets 

-- National Conservation Districts Applaud Proposed Conservation Funding Increases In Biden Budget Proposal

Related Articles - Chesapeake Bay:

-- WeConservePA: Water & Green Infrastructure - A Good Fit For PA American Rescue Plan Funding

-- PA Receives $3.9 Million EPA Grant For Water Quality Improvement Projects In Chesapeake Bay Watershed 

-- Gov. Wolf Joins Chesapeake Bay Watershed Governors, Officials Urging Congress To Support ‘Billion For The Bay Initiative' To Jumpstart Final Restoration Efforts

-- Chesapeake Bay Commission Proposes $737 Million USDA Clean Water & Climate Resiliency Initiative In Federal Infrastructure Bill For Bay Watershed

-- Bay Journal: Chesapeake Bay Restoration Stumbles In Race To Finish Line; Promised Outcomes Lagging Badly Or In Limbo
-- DEP Highlights Local Water Quality Improvement Projects Cleaning Up Chesapeake Bay Watershed; Updates On Other County, Partner Accomplishments 

-- Lancaster County Clean Water Partners Hold June 1 Growing Greener, 319, Clean Water Fund Grant Applicant Workshop

-- Lancaster County Clean Water Partners Highlight Local Work; Lancaster Water Week June 4-12 

-- DCNR Highlights Many Benefits Of Streamside Buffers In Visit To Geisinger Health System In Montour County

-- Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional Program Offers 1-Day Stormwater BMP Training June 29 In Lancaster County; Scholarships Available

[Posted: May 28, 2021]  PA Environment Digest

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