Envirobytes - Archive
ENVIROBYTES, A SUMMARY OF ISSUES AND EVENTS FOR WEEKS ENDING FEBRUARY 10, 2012 TO FEBRUARY 17, 2012
$400,000 IN GREEN JOBS AND GREEN INFRASTRUCTURE GRANTS AVAILABLE TO REDUCE CHESAPEAKE BAY STORMWATER RUNOFF
On Feb. 8, the Chesapeake Bay Trust, EPA Region 3 and Maryland unveiled a $400,000 Green Streets-Green Jobs-Green Towns grant to help accelerate Chesapeake Bay greening efforts. "To meet tomorrow’s challenges, we need to apply cost-effective solutions for improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay watershed and the economy of our communities," said EPA Regional Administrator Shawn M. Garvin. "Green streets and green infrastructure are investments that create jobs and save money while also providing multiple environmental and quality of life benefits." Applications are due March 9. To apply, visit http://www.cbtrustgrants.org/index.jsp For more information, go to http://www.cbtrust.org/site/c.miJPKXPCJnH/b.5368633/k.BDEA/Home.htm
EPA PROVIDES SMART GROWTH ASSISTANCE TO THE MID-ATLANTIC REGION
On Feb. 3, EPA named 56 communities in 26 states to receive technical assistance through the Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities Partnership program. The program helps communities create housing choices, make transportation more efficient, and create business friendly and environmentally viable neighborhoods. The following mid-Atlantic region communities will receive assistance: Lewes, Delaware; Roanoke, Virginia; Newtown Borough, Pa., Marietta, Pa., Greensburg, Pa., and Northhampton, Pa. For more information, go to http://www.epa.gov/smartgrowth/buildingblocks.htm
For information on the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, go to http://www.sustainablecommunities.gov
PROGRAM ENCOURAGES REDUCING EMISSIONS OF PERFLUORINATED CHEMICALS (PFOAS) IN OUR ENVIRONMENT BY SUBSTITUTING SAFER ALTERNATIVES
EPA’s 2006 PFOA Stewardship Program in partnership with major chemical manufacturers aims to voluntarily reduce the emissions and content of PFOA and related chemicals worldwide by 95 percent, and to eliminate emissions and product content of these chemicals by 2015. On Feb. 10, interim results highlighted the success partners have made in reducing these chemicals, which can be toxic to human health and the environment. For more information go to http://www.epa.gov/oppt/existingchemicals/pubs/actionplans/pfcs.html
More information on PFOA and LCPFCs: www.epa.gov/oppt/pfoa.
EPA ESTABLISHES FINAL RULE TO REDUCE AIR TOXICS EMISSIONS FROM PVC PRODUCTION FACILITIES
On Feb. 14, EPA is requiring all production facilities that produce polyvinyl chloride (PVC) to reduce their emissions of vinyl chloride, dioxin and other pollutants to improve air quality and protect the health of adjacent communities. PVC exposure can cause respiratory problems and other serious health issues, as well as increase cancer risk, especially in children. PVC resins are widely used to make commercial and industrial products such as latex paints, coatings, adhesives, clear plastics, rigid plastics, and flooring. For more information, go to http://www.epa.gov/ttn/oarpg/t3fs.html
THE ATLANTIC STURGEON IS ADDED TO THE ENDANGERED SPECIES PROTECTION LIST
On Jan. 31, the NOAA Fisheries Service, and the National Marine Service that administer the Endangered Species Act announced that the Atlantic Sturgeon has made the endangered species list. The threats to the Atlantic sturgeon are pollution, climate change and cargo ship propellers. All federal agencies including EPA must ensure that their actions will not endanger or modify the critical habitats of listed species. Specifically, EPA’s role is to determine if pesticide use is having a negative effect on any listed species.
ORGANIZATIONS ARE REDUCING GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS WITH HELP OF EPA’S ENERGY STAR TOOL
The ongoing Pittsburgh Green Workplace Challenge (September 2011 through October 2012), coordinated by Sustainable Pittsburgh, has declared that 50 participating organizations are making a notable impact on the environment by making their day-to-day operations more efficient. Together, the participants have reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 497 metric tons of CO2 equivalent, saved more than 5 million kilowatt-hours of electricity and conserved 253,000 gallons of water largely using Portfolio Manager, EPA’s Energy Star measurement and tracking tool. For more information, see http://greenchallenge.c4spgh.org/.
IN 2011, RADON MITIGATION SAVED AN ESTIMATED 679 LIVES
Each year the major radon mitigation vent fan manufacturers voluntarily send EPA their vent fan sales data so that EPA can estimate the radon mitigation progress being made nationwide. In 2011, vent fan sales increased about 5.5 percent from their 2010 level compared to the 2.6 percent decline in 2010 from the 2009 level. A report estimates that 16.8 percent of the 465,000 new single-family detached homes built in 2010 included radon-resistant features. However, more than seven million homes estimated above the action level still need mitigation. For more information, visit: http://www.epa.gov/radon.
HEALTHY WATERS BLOG CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
YOUR COMMENTS SOUGHT ON DRINKING WATER QUALITY REPORT – Each year by July 1st you should receive a consumer confidence report or drinking water quality report in the mail from your public water supplier. The report lists the regulated contaminants found in your drinking water, as well as the health effects related to any violations of the drinking water standards. EPA will hold an online public meeting on Thursday, Feb. 23, to get your thoughts on these reports. Hope you will be part of it, at http://blog.epa.gov/healthywaters/.
SAVE THE DATE: ENERGY ROUNDTABLE CONFERENCE – EPA and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection are sponsoring an Energy Roundtable Conference in Harrisburg, Pa. on May 8 for wastewater treatment operators interested in reducing their facilities’ energy costs and ultimately carbon footprint. To be part of this event, or to provide input on energy efficiency, go to http://blog.epa.gov/healthywaters/