Watershed Winds Newsletter
A multi-state environmental education summit spotlighting innovative teaching about water - Attention all informal and formal educators who teach youth about water (environmental educators, nature center directors, scout leader trainers, camp directors, curriculum coordinators, after school program educators, Envirothon coordinators, classroom teachers, extension educators, and more!!) You are invited to SAVE THE DATE, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2012, for an affordable day (approximately 9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. - lunch included) full of great speakers, hands-on workshops, and idea sharing that will enhance your water education programming. Registration for the Dive Deeper Summit is coming soon!! Visit the website to register to receive information. Act 48 Credits will be available. For more information, contact Jennifer Fetter at (717) 921-8803 or 4HWater@psu.edu
If you have a pond on your property, you may have already started to see the growth of what looks like green string-like slime on the bottom of your pond. What you probably have is the beginning stages of filamentous algae.
The growing season began early this year in Pennsylvania, so that means that many of us have already been hard at work preparing yards and gardens for the impending warmer weather.
Water testing by the natural gas industry in the Marcellus Shale region is affirming the need for all rural Pennsylvanians to regularly test their private water supply.
There are many excellent reasons to dispose of unwanted medications properly. To encourage proper disposal, the DEA will again be sponsoring Drug Take-Back programs at many sites across Pennsylvania.
Penn State introduces a new online field guide to assist landowners, land managers, and gas companies understand terrestrial challenges facing shale gas development.
This spring, get a little closer to the water in your life by making a visit to a stream near you.
Watershed Central provides state, local, and voluntary watershed management entities with the key tools, resources, guidance, and datasets to aide in a successful watershed management. Designed to assist users to develop and implement effective watershed management programs, Watershed Central includes guidance, tools, case studies, and data sets to help you share information, analyze data, and identify opportunities to initiate or strengthen your watershed efforts. Watershed Central includes a wiki feature which allows the user to submit and edit content so that information is constantly updated by the watershed community. The wiki includes case studies, information on watershed organizations and various watershed management tools.
EPA recently released a new technical document titled “Identifying and Protecting Healthy Watersheds: Concepts, Assessments, and Management Approaches.” This document provides state water quality and aquatic resource scientists and managers with an overview of the key concepts behind the Healthy Watersheds Initiative. The initiative is intended to preserve and maintain natural ecosystems by protecting our remaining healthy watersheds, preventing them from becoming impaired and accelerating our restoration successes. Examples of approaches for assessing components of healthy watersheds are provided as well as integrated assessment options for identifying healthy watersheds, examples of management approaches and assessment tools and sources of data. States are encouraged to take a strategic, systems approach to protecting healthy watersheds and preventing future water quality impairments.
Results of a study designed to educate and to encourage private water well owners to regularly test their private water supplies highlight the value of water testing.
The Water We Drink: Small Community Outreach Campaign, which offers information about maintaining safe, sustainable, and secure water supplies in small and rural communities, has several articles written especially for those who oversee local water and wastewater services.
The LSRWA's mission is to address sediment accumulation behind the Conowingo Dam, and the associated potential for storms to affect water quality and aquatic life in the Chesapeake Bay. This currently is a basic site to contain LSRWA meeting agendas, news, and press releases, and will evolve to have content deemed helpful to the group. However, documents and monitoring site maps would also be of general interest.
On Feb. 21, 2012, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced a new conservation initiative to protect up to 750,000 acres of the nation’s most highly erodible croplands. Producers can enroll land on a continuous basis beginning this summer at their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) county office. Lands eligible for this program are typically the least productive land on the farm. In many cases the most cost-effective option to reduce erosion is to put the land into a wildlife friendly cover, which will improve habitat and reduce sediment and nutrient runoff and reduce wind erosion. Producers are encouraged to contact their local FSA office or visit FSA’s website for additional information regarding CRP.
Proper Manure Management is a good idea for several reasons. Proper manure applications save you money by reducing fertilizer costs. Proper manure management protects water resources. Finally, proper manure management in Pennsylvania is now the law.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released the new version of its Plant Hardiness Zone Map (PHZM), updating a useful tool for gardeners and researchers for the first time since 1990 with greater accuracy and detail.The new map—jointly developed by USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Oregon State University's (OSU) PRISM Climate Group—is available online.For the first time, the new map offers a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based interactive format and is specifically designed to be Internet-friendly
The summary report of the Chesapeake Bay Manure-to-Energy Summit that took place in September 2011 is available. With over 140 experts in attendance from the Chesapeake Bay region and beyond, the Summit focused not just on the different technologies that are emerging, but more importantly on the public policies that could help to get more of these technologies on the ground in the near term. The report describes 14 different policy options within three categories: Assist market entry; Finance for maximum benefit; Support effective use of by-products. Pennsylvania is already a regional leader in on-farm energy production. However, additional action is needed to fully realize the potential economic and environmental benefits of manure-to-energy systems. Questions or requests for hard copies should be sent to Marel Raub at 717-772-3651 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
February 29th webinar will discuss the origin of methane gas found in the groundwater aquifer in a five county area of Pennsylvania. Join us at noon (until 1:00) for this presentation.
Initiated by a "see through" casing, the study revealed some surprises. All grouts work as expected below the water table. Above the water table grouts vary in their ability to keep surface contaminants from penetrating the aquifer. The two most successful grouts to date were cement-sand and chip bentonite. The study is continuing.
Owning your own home is challenging enough, what do you do when it comes with its own sewage treatment plant? This article provides some clues for owners of septic systems who want to make them last a very long time.
Get your community signed up to participate in a drug take-back program.