During SepticSmart Week, the EPA encourages homeowners to get SepticSmart and take action. A few small, simple steps of proper care and maintenance of your septic system can lead to a big pay off in terms of keeping you and your neighbors healthy and protecting the environment. For homeowners, proper care can also prevent costly repairs or replacement of systems, protect property values, and save water.
In the first broad-scale estimate of air pollution removal by trees nationwide, U.S. Forest Service scientists and collaborators calculated that trees are saving more than 850 human lives a year and preventing 670,000 incidences of acute respiratory symptoms.
By the end of 2015, this roadside spring in Fox Township, Elk County, may be the most talked about spring in the state of Pennsylvania. On September 3, 2014, the Township Supervisors of Fox Township voted unanimously to cooperate with Penn State Law Students, under the direction of Ross Pifer, Director of the Rural Economic Development Clinic, to examine the legal issues for the municipality concerning the spring.
September 9th is Protect Your Groundwater Day! Everyone can and should do something to protect groundwater. Why? We all have a stake in maintaining its quality and quantity.
Autumn is less than a month away and DEP would like to remind citizens about important precautions to take as they are closing their pools and filling their home heating oil tanks. Pool wastewater, if not disposed of properly, can contaminate local waterways, while poorly maintained home heating oil tanks can leak.
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) scientists report that glyphosate, known commercially by many trade names, and its degradation product AMPA (aminomethylphosphonic acid) are transported off-site from agricultural and urban sources and occur widely in the environment. This study is the largest and most comprehensive assessment of the environmental occurrence of glyphosate and AMPA in the United States conducted to date.
Extended drought in California and Texas have put the spotlight on a critical resource of importance to every person--groundwater. Penn State Extension is urging the public to pitch in on Protect Your Groundwater Day September 9.
Penn State Extension Water Resources Extension Educator, Jim Clark, put together a riparian buffer water message that he is displaying at the county fairs in North Central Pennsylvania this summer. The message is simple, “Find a Stream and Plant a Tree”.
Pharmaceuticals, personal-care products, and other contaminants are widespread in water that has passed through landfill waste. The samples of this liquid, also known as leachate, were collected from within each of the studied landfills. This study by the U.S. Geological Survey is the first national assessment of these chemicals of emerging concern in landfill leachate in the United States.
Air pollution affects each of the 17.7 million people who live in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. But it doesn’t just cloud the air we breathe. Airborne pollutants can also harm our land and water, fueling the growth of harmful algae blooms that create oxygen-depleted dead zones in the Bay.
Pond scum. The Penn State Extension receives a lot of phone calls about pond scum this time of year. So what exactly is the pond scum? Well, it could be any number of things. Sometimes it is watermeal or duckweed or both.
To help comply with the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act, which reduces the lead content allowed in drinking water system and plumbing materials by changing the definition of "lead-free" in Section 1417 of the Safe Drinking Water Act, EPA has developed a quick reference for identifying lead-free certification marks for drinking water systems and plumbing materials.
PA CleanWays of McKean County, an affiliate of Keep PA Beautiful, completed a successful tire recycling program at the Smethport Borough Sheds on Route 6 in Smethport, PA, on July 19, 2014. Fourteen volunteers worked to remove 2,000 tires from the McKean County landscape.
The Penn State Extension Water Resources team offers a monthly webinar on various water resources topics on the last Wednesday of each month from 12:00 to 1:00 PM.
USDA has recently noticed that some growers are using bleach (Clorox TM) as a disinfectant in post-harvest washing systems. Disinfectants are regulated the same way as pesticides and unless the label on the bottle indicates EPA approval for washing fruits and vegetables, it is against federal law to use it for that purpose.
July and August often bring numerous calls and emails to Penn State Extension from pond owners about nuisance growth of algae. While long strands of filamentous algae are unappealing and have little value to the pond ecosystem, some other types of pond algae can actually provide important benefits to a pond.
At this time of year, many calls are received at the Extension office from individuals who are interested in finding out how to eliminate aquatic plants that have suddenly taken over their ponds and have become a problem either aesthetically or for the pond’s recreational use.
Intersex fish have been found in Pennsylvania’s Susquehanna, Delaware and Ohio river basins, indicating that the effects of endocrine-disrupting chemicals are more widespread than previously known. New U.S. Geological Survey-led research published in Environmental Monitoring and Assessment found two fish species, smallmouth bass and white sucker, exhibiting the effects of exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals. Intersex characteristics caused by hormones and hormone-mimicking compounds include immature eggs in male fish.
A workshop designed to educate municipalities, engineers, watershed groups and students about the value of trees and green infrastructure in water quality was held on June 9, 2014 at the York Water Company Employee Center in York County.