This week, approximately 200 leaders from municipal governments, county conservation districts, agriculture, environmental groups, water companies, and other entities participated in a meeting hosted by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to expand local engagement in Phase 3 of the state plan for improving water quality in the state’s portion of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed.
“After the successful public kickoff of the Phase 3 planning process last June, the steering committee and six work groups — about 80 state and local volunteers — worked to compile data, analyze research, and determine the most viable strategies to meet our obligations,” said DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell. “Taking a county-level approach is critical if Pennsylvania is to attain its pollution reduction goals.”
Participants in the meeting shared their expertise to help finalize the Community Clean Water Toolbox drafted by the Local Area Goals Workgroup, co-chaired by Lisa Shaeffer, Director of Government Relations, County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania; Steve Taglang, DEP Bureau of Clean Water; and Davitt Woodwell, President and CEO, Pennsylvania Environmental Council.
The toolbox presents a draft set of local data and resource, engagement, planning, and tracking tools available to counties for developing and implementing action plans to reduce nitrogen, phosphorous, and sediment from streams and rivers. It quantifies the amount of pollutants reduced so far, current pollutant levels, and further reductions needed for each county.
Learn more about Pennsylvania’s Community Clean Water Toolbox.