Chesapeake Council Meets, PA “Upstream” Issues Still Linger

This week’s meeting of the Chesapeake Bay Executive Council, including several watershed areas states and chaired by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, brought continued focus to Pennsylvania’s role in Bay pollution, and next steps in these tenuous interstate issues.

The Chesapeake Bay Executive Council, created under the Chesapeake Bay Program to promote inter jurisdictional cooperation toward Bay restoration and cleanup goals, convened on September 5 for its annual meeting. The meeting was hosted in Oxon Hill, Maryland by Governor Hogan, who currently chairs the body.

Among discussion topics was the state of cleanup efforts – Watershed Implementation Plans – adopted by each area state, and their progress with funding and cleanup goals. That discussion has its sharpest point when discussing Pennsylvania, whose pollution load contributes substantially to the downstream problems of the Susquehanna Riven, which flows into the Bay toward its north end.

From coverage in Maryland Matters:

Maryland Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R) on Thursday sought to downplay any animus between his state and Pennsylvania over Chesapeake Bay cleanup efforts – a week after blistering the Keystone State in a letter to federal and commonwealth officials.

“I wouldn’t really describe it as a tiff,” Hogan said in response to a reporter’s question following the annual meeting in Oxon Hill of the Chesapeake Bay Executive Council, which Hogan leads. “I think we’ve had very productive discussions today. I do think they’re doing everything they can…They’re good neighbors.”

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation took to social media to raise concerns that issues with upstream pollution were not confronted more directly at the meeting:

See more social media coverage from both the Chesapeake Bay Program, and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties