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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Biennial DEP Report Shows 80 Percent of Streams, Rivers Attaining Use Designation--Challenges Remain

Report to EPA Also Recommends Streams, Rivers for ‘Impaired’ Status

HARRISBURG -- Although Pennsylvania has made great progress in cleaning up its rivers, streams, lakes, wetlands and other water bodies, Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Hanger said that a new report submitted to the federal government today shows there are still challenges threatening Pennsylvania’s water quality.

The report, entitled “2010 Pennsylvania Integrated Water Quality Monitoring and Assessment Report,” is submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in accordance with the Clean Water Act, which requires each state to assess water quality within its borders.

“We’ve made a lot of progress in the past eight years improving water quality throughout Pennsylvania,” said Hanger. “We’ve worked with municipalities to upgrade their wastewater treatment systems; we’ve worked with developers to minimize runoff; we’ve restored streambanks, reduced erosion and planted riparian buffers; and we’ve worked with the agriculture industry to ensure their operations protect the quality of streams running through their farms.”

The secretary noted that Pennsylvania has classified approximately 3,300 miles of streams as exceptional value and another nearly 23,000 miles as high quality, ensuring the most stringent protections. He added that earlier this year, the state enacted a mandatory 150-foot buffer from all development along these most pristine waterways.

“This work means better water for the state, which is important to our livelihood and health, obviously, but it’s also important to our economy,” said Hanger. “Many industries can’t function if they have to rely on polluted water. And, unfortunately, there are still many threats to the state’s waterways, so unless we continue to address those issues, thousands upon thousands of jobs could be in jeopardy.” More...


Anonymous said...

a HIGH percentage of the exceptional value streams in PA are in the north central part of the state. Is it really a good idea to do things to risk degrading these valuable resources?

James Yust said...

was this announcement made at the DEP's solar powered office?Was the electric being used generated by an" alternative "system of ANY kind?Has the DEP in almost 40 years built or employed any type of alternative systems to in any way reduce their own carbon footprint?If your not part of the solution......