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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Busy Agenda For Potter County Water Quality Work Group

Busy Agenda For Potter County Water Quality Work Group

watershedPotter County Water Quality Work Group met on Dec. 16 at the Potter County Education Council offices in Coudersport. Members are supporting an application for a grant to obtain 24/7 remote monitors for all of the public water supplies in Potter County, most of which are groundwater sources. These would provide an early warning of any potential contamination while establishing a data baseline on water conditions. They also heard reports on a public comment period that has just opened for proposed changes in Pennsylvania’s oil/gas drilling regulations. Members support a campaign launched by the Triple Divide Watershed Coalition and the Potter County Board of Commissioners to require energy companies to notify public water suppliers of any drilling planned within close proximity to an public drinking water source.

Members heard an update on the Upper Allegheny Watershed Association conservation plan, being developed for the 80 miles of Mill Creek and the headwaters of the Allegheny River. Partners in the project include Trout Unlimited, the Pa. Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, and the Pa. Fish and Boat Commission. Soon, the group will be mounting four measuring stations to monitor for acid precipitation in the watershed. All of the assembled data will be used with other resources to develop a conservation plan to protect the headwaters region. Water Quality Work Group facilitator Bob Veilleux said a steering committee recently met to determine priorities for the group and is recommending that conservation plans similar to the Allegheny/Mill Creek project be pursued for the Susquehanna and Genesee headwaters.

Other discussions centered on a multi-phased project to replace culverts that impede the migration of fish and other species; options for cleanup of illegal dumpsites in Potter County; projects that could qualify for grants through the Sinnemahoning Creek Watershed Restoration Program (funded through a settlement from the 2006 train derailment and lye spill), and some possible services that could be provided by the new Potter County Geographic Information Services Department. Attending the meeting were Jim Clark, Earl Brown, Paul Heimel, Chris Mitterer, Bob Volkmar, Doug Morley, John McLaughlin, Jason Childs, Bob Veilleux, Curt Weinhold, Ashlynne Beacker, Frank Weeks and Mark Stephens (DEP).

3 comments :

Anonymous said...

Great job! Thanks for caring.

Anonymous said...

This is something Potter County can be proud of. That roster of people on this task group is impressive and the work is very important. Hat's off! I am glad to see Mr. Brown on here. He was a great teacher at CHS.

Anonymous said...

The giant control everything gas industry will never let these early detection devices slide! Never, Ever, Ever, just telling it like it is.! I would know because I work for one!