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September 30, 2014
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NEW YORK CITY, NY — Of the 400,000 or so people participating in the People’s Climate March on September 21, quite a few were from the Upper Delaware Valley. There were representatives from the Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy, Catskill Mountainkeeper, Damascus Citizens for Sustainability and the Delaware Riverkeeper Network. There was also a contingent of about 20 residents from The Weather Project, which was created by the NACL Theater in Highland Lake.

PA FBC sues Consol Energy over Dunkard Creek environmental disaster

HARRISBURG, PA – The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) has sued Consol Energy for civil damages resulting from a devastating 2009 pollution incident in which discharges from a Consol coal mine entered Dunkard Creek, contributing to a massive fish kill spanning nearly 30 miles of stream in West Virginia and Pennsylvania. The lawsuits seek compensatory damages for the lost aquatic life and lost fishing opportunities for Pennsylvania anglers and punitive damages to deter future pollution.  Read more

DEC Begins 90-Day Public Comment Period on Draft Hydraulic Fracturing Study

ALBANY, NY — The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation opened a more than 90-day public comment period on its revised draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement, DEC Commissioner Joe Martens announced today. In addition, the agency will issue its proposed regulations governing high-volume hydraulic fracturing in early October.  Read more

Flood warnings cancelled, Sullivan open for business - 2:15 Friday

Sullivan County is open for business; all flood watches and warnings have been rescinded.

Sullivan County Manager David Fanslau issued the following statement: "Sullivan County has recovered quite well from the wrath of this week's storms that brought remnants of Tropical Depression Lee. The vast majority (if not all) of the Sullivan County Catskills is clear for traveling and its businesses are open and welcoming visitors. This weekend's Farming with Kids at Applepond Farm, the Harvest Festival at Bethel Woods on Sunday, rally New York autumn rallysprint, various exhibits, several area farmers markets and much more.  Read more

Roads closed due to flooding in Wayne, Pike, Sullivan 2:00 pm

This is a list of road closures due to flooding and downed power lines caused by the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee.  Read more

DRBC will not act on gas drilling regulations at September 21 meeting; special meeting scheduled for October 21

WEST TRENTON, N.J. (Sept. 6) – Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) Executive Director Carol R. Collier today announced that draft natural gas development regulations will not be on the September 21, 2011 meeting agenda for consideration by the commissioners.  Read more

World Trade Center artifacts on display

As the 10th anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City approaches, artifacts are on display or being readied for display in at least three locations in Sullivan County.

At the government center in Monticello, there is a display of a crushed door from a fire truck that belonged to Squad 18 of the FDNY.  Read more

TGP tunnels under Route 590

Just prior to Hurricane Irene’s arrival in the Upper Delaware region, Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP) crews tunneled underneath Route 590 in Lackawaxen Township during the ongoing expansion of its 300 Line Project. Shown here is a road bore machine, which runs on tracks, according to Jerry Creel, TGP’s 300 Line Project manager. A massive auger drills horizontally through earth and rock, depositing the pulverized material in the trench. Standing on the roadway, the vibrations could be felt through the road’s surface.

Ruling on Toronto Reservoir access may come soon

The 10-year battle over the public access point at the Toronto Reservoir may soon be settled as a judge in Albany considers the merits of the case.  Read more

Frost Valley YMCA clobbered; FEMA funds may be available to help

Hurricane Irene pounded Claryville and the Frost Valley YMCA when it blew through the area on August 28. According to a press release from the organization issued on September 2, there was no road access to Frost Valley and no estimated timeline on when one would become available.

The organization says entire roads and bridges were washed away, and one of its historic buildings, Pigeon Lodge, was shattered beyond repair.  Read more

River trenching delayed by storms

Plans to begin trenching activities in the Lackawaxen River related to the Tennessee Gas Pipeline’s (TGP) 300 Line Project in Pike County continue to be delayed following Hurricane Irene and a series of rain events that have beset the region.  Read more

Watching water quality; multiple efforts underway

Little known and rarely observed are several water quality initiatives underway in the region. The River Reporter takes a look at what’s being done and by whom in this series.  Read more

Frost Valley YMCA clobbered;FEMA funds may be available to help

Hurricane Irene pounded Claryville and the Frost Valley YMCA when it blew through the area on August 28. According to a press release from the organization issued on September 2, there was no road access to Frost Valley and no estimated timeline on when one would become available.  Read more

Feds soften harsh sign rule; Congress isn’t providing funding

WASHINGTON, D.C. — It’s a sign of the times. The Federal Highway Administration is caving in to a tsunami of complaints about its stringent sign law that had the potential to pressure local budgets to the breaking point.  Read more

News in brief

Tar sand protest arrest tally tops 1,200

WASHINGTON, DC — A civil disobedience demonstration in front of the White House, protesting the construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline that has been proposed to carry oil from Canada’s tar sands concluded last Friday after its planned two-week run. As of the last day, 1,250 people had been arrested.  Read more

Bethel Democrats rift healing? Party withholds backing of candidates

Three Democratic candidates for two seats on the town board will face off in a primary contest on September 13. Long-time incumbents Vicky Vassmer-Simpson and Bob Blais will be sharing the ballot with former highway superintendent Bernie Cohen.

The local Democratic Committee has decided not to back a candidate until after the primary, at which time it will presumably back the two winners. If Vassmer-Simpson wins and the committee supports her, it may signal the beginning of an end to a huge rift in the party that has defined it for the past couple of election cycles.  Read more

Flood Watch issued for Sullivan County

Sullivan County Manager David Fanslau has issued a Flash Flood Watch associated with Heavy Rain Potential into Monday evening.

Fanslau said, "The National Weather Service (NSW) has issued a Flash Flood Watch in Sullivan County for periodic heavy rain that will continue to affect the watch area through the day Monday (Labor Day) and into Monday evening. Additional rainfall amounts of one (1) two (2) inches are expected for most areas, with localized amounts of three (3) inches or greater likely in more persistent and heavier rain bands.  Read more

Wayne to collect hurricane damage information

On Tuesday September 6, 2011, Wayne County Emergency Management will begin to collect data from individuals and business owners concerning losses and damage from Hurricane Irene. Information will be gathered by telephone at 570-253-1622, by fax 570-253-2943 or by e-mail at damage11@co.wayne.pa.us.  Read more

Bonacic Urges President Obama to Declare Orange and Sullivan Counties a Disaster Area

Between Sunday and Tuesday, State Senator John Bonacic has visited locations around the four counties of his Senate District to view flood damaged properties and put local officials in touch with officials from the State and FEMA.  Read more

Fanslau explains FEMA disaster declaration process

Sullivan County Manager David Fanslau issued the following statement: "There have been some news media this morning that left the impression that a determination was made that Sullivan County was rejected for inclusion in federal disaster aid through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). That conclusion would be an incorrect conclusion.  Read more

Protesting the tar sands pipeline

WASHINGTON DC — This August, well-known environmental writer and leader for action against climate change Bill McKibben, along with other leading environmentalists, environmental groups like the Indigenous Environmental Network and religious organizations organized the “Tar Sands Action,” a massive civil disobedience protest to encourage President Obama to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline.  Read more