Governor Wolf Seeks Input on How to Reduce Pollution

The Clean Air Board has been closely following the lawsuit between the federal government and the Volkswagen corporation over fraudulent actions to disguise the fact that it was not diesel engine emission standards.  The lawsuit has ended in a settlement, whereby Volkswagen agreed to pay states to conduct programs to reduce air pollution caused by its products.

On May 19, 2017, Governor Wolf announced that he was seeking ideas on how to spend $118 million from the Volkswagen settlement to pay for projects to reduce air pollution in Pennsylvania. Settlement funds can be used to pay for ten types of vehicle upgrade and infrastructure projects, including converting older diesel vehicles and equipment to cleaner burning fuels, and electric vehicle infrastructure.

Pennsylvania citizens can comment on a draft plan to allocate money to pollution control projects until July 5, 2017.   For more information, go to:  http://www.ahs.dep.pa.gov/NewsRoomPublic/articleviewer.aspx?id=21203&typeid=1

Clean Air Board meeting May 4

Join us at the Clean Air Board community meeting on May 4 at 6:30 pm.  We will hear Dr. Craig Jurgensen’s report on the Environmental Neurotoxicology Research Forum recently hosted by the PennState College of Medicine.  We are meeting at the Second Presbyterian Church, 528 Garland Drive, Carlisle, PA

Preserving Cumberland County’s Rural Landscape and Natural Resources

The Cumberland Conservation Collaborative (CCC) will host its first community forum at the Penn Township Volunteer Fire Department’s Social Hall from 5:30 to 8 p.m. May 11. The forum, entitled “Preserving Cumberland County’s Rural Landscape & Natural Resources,”

The forum will be divided into two segments. From 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., attendees can enjoy light refreshments while looking over displays set up by the CCC’s member organizations.  The Clean Air Board, the Yellow Breeches Watershed Association, the Cumberland Valley Appalachian Trail Club and other organizations will have table displays that explain who they are and what they do. If attendees are interested in learning more or volunteering, each table will also have a sign-up sheet. A panel discussion, which begins at 6:30 p.m., will feature four panelists whose combined experience covers government, nonprofit and business interest in conservation and environmental issues. It will include the following panelists:

  • Troy Truax, an engineer with Michael Baker International Inc., is the planning officials development officer for the American Planning Association, Pennsylvania chapter, as well as chairman of South Middleton’s planning commission.
  • Bill Chain is the former vice president of the Central Pennsylvania Conservancy, a former agricultural educator with Future Farmers of America and the senior agriculture program manager for The Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA.
  • Andy Williford is the vice president of human resources for Volvo Construction Equipment Operations Americas. Mr. Williford has a degree in public management as well as certificates in human resources.
  • Jonathan Pinkerton is vice president of Susquehanna Heritage, which seeks to preserve and promote the history and well being of the Susquehanna River. Pinkerton is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

The forum will be moderated by Shippensburg geography professor Dr. George Pomeroy. The form will be held at Penn Township Fire Hall is located at 1750 Pine Road, Newville PA 17241

Controlling Methane Leaks from Gas Operations

We have an opportunity to tell DEP that we want them to stop leaks from gas well operations.  DEP wants to hear from you by June 5. Come to the Clean Air Board meeting and learn what proposals are on the table and how to file your comments. The Clean Air Board will meet on Thursday, April 6 at 7 pm, at 528 Garland Drive, Carlisle.

Science: The Polluted Brain

The Polluted Brain by Emily Underwood

Science  27 Jan 2017:
Vol. 355, Issue 6323, pp. 342-345
DOI: 10.1126/science.355.6323.342

Some of the health risks of inhaling fine and ultrafine pollutant particles are well-established, such as asthma, lung cancer, and, most recently, heart disease. But a growing body of evidence suggests that such exposure can also harm the brain, accelerating cognitive aging, and may even increase risk of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. The link between air pollution and dementia remains controversial—even its proponents warn that more research is needed to confirm a causal connection and work out just how the particles might enter the brain and make mischief there. But a growing number of epidemiological studies from around the world, new findings from animal models and human brain imaging studies, and increasingly sophisticated techniques for modeling PM2.5 exposures have raised alarms.

Read more from Science: http://science.sciencemag.org/content/355/6323/342

Carbon Fee and Dividend Resolution

Update:  On March 9, the Carlisle Borough Council passed a resolution proposed by Dickinson College students that calls for the U.S. Congress to limit climate change by exploring a national carbon fee and dividend.
Support the carbon fee and dividend resolution at the Borough of Carlisle Council meeting on March 9.
CAB supports the initiative taken by Dickinson College students urging the Borough of Carlisle to adopt a resolution to urge Congress to address climate change and explore a carbon fee and dividend policy.  While there are many ways to reduce carbon pollution and protect the public health, the carbon fee and dividend policy is a promising solution.  The resolution does not impose any cost to the Borough and is directed toward our Congressional representatives.
The full resolution can be found here.

You may contact Borough Council through its Secretary,  Joyce Stone, at jstone@carlislepa.org 

You may also attend the Borough Council meeting on March 9, 2017, at 7 pm to show your support.

Clean Air Board Community Meeting March 2, 7 pm

We will discuss two topics:

The future of rural Cumberland County. The Cumberland Conservation Collaborative is planning a forum on the forces and factors that will shape the future of rural Cumberland County.  CAB  will participate in this forum.  Share your concerns.

Carbon Fees and Dividend Policy.  Natalie McNeil, Dickinson College student, will explain a proposal that she is presenting to the Carlisle Borough Council.

Join us at the Second Presbyterian Church in Carlisle, 528 Garland Drive, Carlisle. March 2, 7-8pm.  The meeting room is the chapel (on your right side as you enter). Garland Drive is just south of Exit 45, Interstate 81 in Carlisle.