Energy and Environment

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State lawmakers advocating statewide action on climate change will on Monday urge Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf to join the U.S. Climate Alliance, a new group of 13 states that seeks to comply with the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement despite the withdrawal by the Trump administration.  

Associated Press

Gov.Tom Wolf said he will veto a bill that would stop Pennsylvania towns and cities taxing or banning plastic single-use shopping bags. The bill, HB 1071, went to Wolf’s desk after receiving final legislative approval from the Senate on June 14. It received bipartisan support, including from the lead sponsor, Democratic Rep. Mike Hanna of Centre County, who sought to protect jobs in a plastic bag factory in his district. 

REID FRAZIER / THE ALLEGHENY FRONT

Shell’s $6 billion ethane cracker in Beaver County could be the first of several large chemical plants in the region, petrochemical industry leaders and observers said at a conference in Pittsburgh Monday. That’s because there’s enough ethane being produced in the region to provide the chemical industry with the raw material without any additional drilling. 

SCOTT DETROW, StateImpact Pennsylvania

In a landmark environmental decision, a majority of Pennsylvania’s Supreme Court justices established a broad interpretation of the Environmental Rights Amendment to the state constitution Tuesday, cementing in place the commonwealth’s role as trustee for public natural resources. The move is a victory for environmental advocates, and a defeat for the state and industrial polluters, who had argued that granting a wider interpretation could deter economic development. 

Shell via flickr

Shell’s $6 billion ethane cracker in Beaver County could be the first of several large chemical plants in the region, petrochemical industry leaders and observers said at a conference in Pittsburgh Monday. That’s because there’s enough ethane being produced in the region to provide the chemical industry with the raw material without any additional drilling. 

Susan Phillips, StateImpact Pennsylvania

Sunoco Pipeline has asked a Huntingdon County judge to order a family protesting the Mariner East 2 pipeline, and their supporters, to refrain from obstructing pipeline construction or face arrest. It’s the latest legal maneuver in a stand-off that has pitted the pipeline company against the Gerhart family. 

Citizen lobbyist Jay Butera believes in the power of polite persistence. Nearly every week for the past 10 years, he has taken the Amtrak train down to Washington D.C. from his home in Montgomery County to convince congress to take action on climate. 

Research On Lake Erie Algae Blooms Imperiled

Jun 15, 2017
ELIZABETH MILLER / GREAT LAKES TODAY

GREAT LAKES TODAY - A lot of attention has focused on President Trump's proposal to eliminate funding for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which doles out $300 million a year for various projects. But his "skinny budget" has other cuts -- including the National Sea Grant program -- that would affect the region. 

MARIE CUSICK/ STATEIMPACT PENNSYLVANIA

More than 100 people turned out in Lancaster County Monday evening to weigh in on the Atlantic Sunrise, a large interstate natural gas line planned to run through 10 counties in Pennsylvania.  

Photo: Brian Moran / flickr

Matt Owens stands at the bottom of a freshly dug hole, about the size of a football field, cut 120 feet deep into a hillside in Somerset County. The pit will soon become the entrance to the Acosta Deep mine. Owens, safety manager at the mine, points to the wall of the pit. 

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