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[1THING] Blog: Archive for February, 2018

[ PennDOT Seeks Public Feedback On Statewide Bicycle, Pedestrian Plan ]

The Department of Transportation recently announced it has begun the process of updating the Statewide Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan and is inviting the public to weigh in through an online survey.

The plan, last updated in 2007, will outline a vision and framework for improving conditions for walking and bicycling across Pennsylvania, especially for those Pennsylvanians who walk and bicycle out of necessity rather than for leisure and recreation.

“Keeping our transportation network safe and accessible for all transportation modes is a crucial responsibility,” said PennDOT Secretary Leslie S. Richards, “We are accountable for supporting and improving quality of life for communities, and updating our bicycle and pedestrian master plan is a crucial step in that process.”

Over the next 18 months, PennDOT will use the project website to provide information on the department’s progress. The community survey also will be accessible on the site and will play a critical role in understanding the current issues and challenges facing people who walk and bike across Pennsylvania.

Once completed, the PA Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan will be a resource for Municipal Planning Organizations (MPOs), Regional Planning Organizations (RPOs), and municipalities throughout Pennsylvania, providing guidance to local governments on best practices for developing and implementing regional and local bicycle and pedestrian plans.

Read the full story from PA Environment Digest here.



[ 4 ways Trump’s infrastructure plan puts Americans at risk ]

This plan has very little to do with infrastructure – and everything with gutting environmental laws and ignoring risk.


[ Glastonbury Festival To Ban Plastic Bottles On Site in 2019 ]

Pollstar is reporting that when one of the most iconic festivals of the world returns in 2019, visitors won’t be allowed any plastic bottles on site:

Glastonbury has been encouraging its guests to leave plastic bottles at home and instead refill stainless steel bottles at the several hundred taps on the festival grounds. Festivalgoers could purchase such bottles or cups on site, too.

Now, festival organizer Emily Eavis told the UK Mirror, “our big mission for next year is banning plastic bottles. We’re in the middle of it at the moment.”

Vendors selling at the event are already using re-usable or compostable flatware and plates. The festival’s green policies can be viewed on its website. They encourage festivalgoers to take home what they bring, which includes tents.

Glastonbury published numbers that exemplify the vast amount of waste that is recycled after each edition. In 2014, the most current numbers available, 54 percent or 983 tons of the waste generated on site was recycled, which included 114 tons of composted organic waste, 400 tons of chipped wood, 23 tons of glass, 85 tons of cans and plastic bottles, 41 tons of cardboard, 162 tons of scrap metal, 11.2 tons of clothing, tents, sleeping bags, 0.264 tons of batteries, three tons of dense plastic, 0.25 tons plastic sheets.

Read the full story from Pollstar here.


[ Trump administration aims to turn over America’s oceans to the oil industry ]

This will allow for massive lease sales that will endanger coastal lands and communities.



[ We’re fighting Trump’s monument rollbacks in court—so why are plans still moving forward? ]

Until March 19, the public can formally weigh in on the process by which the government is opening Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments to mining, reckless off-road vehicle use and other damaging activities.


[ Study: Methane Emissions Far Higher than Reported ]

Methane emissions from Pennsylvania oil and gas sites are much higher than the industry reports, according to a new study.

Conducted by the Environmental Defense Fund, the study shows that oil and gas operation in the state emit more than 520,000 tons of methane every year from leaky, outdated and malfunctioning equipment. Andrew Williams, director of regulatory and legislative affairs with EDF calls the disparity between what’s reported and what the research has found “staggering.”

“Oil and gas methane emissions could be as high as five times what industry reports through the state methane and greenhouse gas reporting inventories,” says Williams.

He says that’s as much near term climate pollution as 11 coal fired power plants.

The state Department of Environmental Protection is now finalizing methane reduction requirements for new, unconventional facilities, which are expected to reduce emissions by about three percent. According to Williams, if the state regulations included existing unconventional sources, emissions would be 25 percent lower.

He says even greater reductions could be achieved by following the lead of other states that also include conventional facilities.

“You could get essentially 60 percent of the methane emissions out of the atmosphere by comprehensively regulating oil and gas methane emissions in Pennsylvania,” he says.

The DEP has not made any proposal to address pollution from older, conventional wells.

Williams notes the study also found emissions of volatile organic compounds, which contribute to smog and respiratory diseases like asthma, are nine times higher than reported to the state.

Of the study he says, “It highlights the necessity to move forward as quickly as possible to deal with not only the methane emissions, but also the volatile organic compound emissions, which really affect communities and families across the state.”

The study concludes that, without additional regulatory action by the state, more than five million tons of methane pollution could be emitted by 2025.

-Andrea Sears, Keystone State News Connection


[ Dunkin’ Donuts to Eliminate Foam Cups ]

As part of its commitment to serve both people and the planet responsibly, Dunkin’ Donuts, a leading retailer of hot, dreamstime_xs_8380261brewed coffee, recently announced plans to eliminate all polystyrene foam cups in its global supply chain beginning in spring 2018, with a targeted completion date of 2020. In U.S. restaurants, Dunkin’ Donuts will replace the foam cup with a new, double-walled paper cup. The majority of Dunkin’ Donuts’ international markets are currently using paper cups, and the brand will work with its franchisees to eliminate foam cups from the remaining international markets by the 2020 goal.

Read the full press release here.


[ Keep PA Beautiful Earns National Recognition At Keep America Beautiful Awards Ceremony ]

Keep America Beautiful presented Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful with a Diamond State Affiliate Recognition Award at Keep America Beautiful’s National Awards Ceremony during its 2018 National Conference in Dallas, Texas.

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful was honored for its outstanding promotion of Keep America Beautiful’s mission statewide and for its program support for local affiliates in Pennsylvania, distinguishing itself as an exemplary statewide affiliate organization.

Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful earned the Diamond Award, the highest recognition, for its implementation of multiple community improvement programs, including–

— The Great American Cleanup of PA is Pennsylvania’s premier community improvement initiative. Since the inception of this annual event in 2004, over 2.1 million volunteers have picked up 97 million pounds of litter and waste, 170,619 miles of roads, waterways, shorelines, and trails have been cleaned, and more than 181,000 trees, bulbs, and flowers have been planted.

— The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program provides an opportunity to educate consumers on the hazards of cigarette litter and provide tools to change their behavior. Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful has been implementing the Cigarette Litter Prevention Program throughout Pennsylvania since 2010.

Celebrating its 65th anniversary in 2018, Keep America Beautiful consists of a national network of more than 600 statewide and community-based affiliates whose programs and initiatives, supported by millions of volunteers, help transform public spaces into beautiful places.


[ Interior Department moves to gut safeguards to methane pollution ]

This proposal is the latest attack on environmental protections by the Trump administration, which has sought to reverse



[ Spending Time at Home Saves Energy ]

Americans’ increasing reliance on online shopping and entertainment is saving large amounts of energy.

Researchers have identified a positive trade-off for the rise in online shopping, our consumption of streaming video, and employees working from home. Despite increasing the amount of residential energy demand, the decrease in travel and use of non-residential spaces was responsible for a net 1,700 trillion bTU in energy savings for the United States in 2012, 1.8% of the national total. The analysis, published January 29 in the journal Joule, reflects how advances in information technology are changing the American lifestyle, particularly for those under the age of 65.

Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-01-americans-home-lot-energy.html#jCp