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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Citizen feedback sought as PA revises forest management plan

It's the public's chance to weigh in on how the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) is managing our state forests. DCNR has released the fall 2015 public meeting schedule for the public to comment on the Draft State Forest Resource Management Plan. 

The draft plan, last revised in 2007, is the main tool the Bureau of Forestry uses to manage Pennsylvania's approximately 2.2 million acre state forest systemShale gas and water resources in state forests are among the numerous areas covered in this draft document

How does this affect you? 
You should attend a meeting and be prepared to express your concerns if you:
  • use trails on state forest land; 
  • are troubled about gas development on these lands; 
  • like to camp or fish along streams that run through state forestland; 
  • treasure Pennsylvania's vast expanses of forests; and 
  • care how they will be impacted by climate change.
Because public lands matter now and for generations, it is important that you plan to attend and provide input at the meetings. The first meeting is on Tuesday, October 6 in Wilkes-Barre, with a total of 12 meetings across Pennsylvania through November 18. All meetings take place from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. Written comments are also accepted through November 30 at Visit DCNR's website for additional information on the process. 

This is a key opportunity to provide input to the commonwealth. Watch for information about how to submit written comments with links to key issues and talking points coming soon from PennFuture. 

Tuesday, Oct. 6
The Woodlands Resort
1073 Hwy 315
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702
Wednesday, Oct. 7
Stroudsmoor Inn
257 Stroudsmoor Rd
Stroudsburg, PA 18360
Thursday, Oct. 8
Fairmount Park Horticulture Center
100 N Horticulture Dr
Philadelphia, PA 19131
Wednesday, Oct. 21
Bucktail High School Cafeteria
1300 Bucktail Ave
Renovo, PA 17764
Thursday, Oct. 22
Pennsylvania Lumber Museum
5660 US-6
Ulysses, PA 16948
Tuesday, Oct. 27
Bedford Travelodge
4517 US-220 BUS
Bedford, PA 15522
Wednesday, Oct. 28
Double Tree Hotel, Pittsburgh - Monroeville
101 Mall Blvd
Monroeville, PA 15146
Thursday, Oct. 29
Park Inn by Radisson
45 Holiday Inn Rd
Clarion, PA 16214
State College
Tuesday, Nov. 3
Ramada Inn: Nittany Room 1450 S Atherton St
State College, PA 16801
Tuesday, Nov. 10
Comfort Suites
10 S Hanover St
Carlisle, PA 17013
Thursday, Nov. 12
Genetti Hotel: Terrace Room
200 W 4th St
Williamsport, PA 17701

Kate Gibbons is Northeastern Pennsylvania outreach coordinator for PennFuture and is based in Wilkes-Barre. 

Thursday, September 17, 2015

What’s the state of Pennsylvania's air?

This is the second post in a four-part blog series on air quality.

Now that you have a solid understanding of air pollutants it’s time to look at what is in the air you (yes, you) are breathing at home. We compiled data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for eight cities throughout Pennsylvania and put it into an interactive infographic. Check out how your region stacks up!

If you don’t live in Pennsylvania or are just curious to see how other cities in the USA compare, our friends at the Breathe Project (based in Pittsburgh) have created an interactive Breathe Meter. As you can tell, there’s still a lot to clean up in order to make sure the air we’re breathing isn’t harming our health.

Stay tuned for the next post in this series to find out who makes the standards and how they were established.

Nicole Catino is Penn Future’s 2015 Student Conservation Association Green Cities Sustainability Fellow and is based in Pittsburgh.