Montgomery County’s 2021 Energy Summit Announces Session Schedule

Montgomery County’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the US Green Building Council National Capital Region have announced the preliminary schedule of the virtual 2021 Montgomery County Energy Summit. The Summit’s 2021 theme is “Resiliency, from Building to Community,” and will build upon the County's goal to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2035. The Summit will explore strategies, technologies and case studies. This year's Summit is a forum for the community to discuss ways…

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Climate Leadership Academy to Host Webinars with MEMA and MDH

The Maryland Climate Leadership Academy recently announced that they would be hosting webinars in partnership with the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) and the Maryland Department of Health (MDH).  On April 7th, 2021 at 12:00 noon, MEMA will host a webinar entitled "Emergency Management and Hazard Mitigation Planning Tools." In this webinar, they will discuss the role emergency management plays in climate resiliency and the shared risk and role of public and private entities. Read…

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State Settles Lawsuit With Luke Paper Mill

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh and Secretary of the Environment Ben Grumbles today announced a settlement with the owners of the Luke Paper Mill. Under the terms of the settlement, Verso Luke LLC and its parent company, Verso Corporation will have to continue investigating the source of seepages, remediate the discharge, and pay a civil penalty of $650,000.  The lawsuit began last year after reports that "black liquor," a sludge byproduct of paper production, was…

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Prince George’s Urban Farm Incubator Initiative Wins Urban Ag Conservation Grant

The National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) announced $1 million in urban agriculture conservation funding for 20 conservation districts across 14 states, including Prince George's County Soil Conservation District. NACD and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) first partnered through the Urban Agriculture Conservation Grant Initiative in 2016 to support technical assistance activities related to community-oriented agricultural programs. Photo credit: NACD From the NACD press release: “The Urban Agriculture Conservation…

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Washington County Commissioners Appoint New Environmental Director

Earlier this week the Washington County Board of County Commissioners announced the appointment of Mark Bradshaw as Director of the Division of Environmental Management. Bradshaw will lead Solid Waste & Recycling, Water Quality, and the Clean County Initiative. He has served Washington County Government for the past 22 years, most recently as Deputy Director of Engineering Services. From the press release: Bradshaw graduated from Wilkes University earning a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering. He…

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CBF: Global Pandemic or Not, We Won’t Stop Putting Oysters in the Bay

The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) didn't let the pandemic stop them from their efforts to restore the Chesapeake Bay's native oyster population, a critical initiative in restoring the Bay. The Little Choptank oyster restoration project, completed last summer but spanning about 5 years, is one of the largest in the world. The 358-acres of oyster sanctuary (that's larger than the National Mall in Washington, DC) are home to 2 billion baby oysters. From the CBF…

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MDE Urging Marylanders to Test Their Homes for Radon

The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) is urging Marylanders to consider testing their homes for radon by accessing a reduced price ($3) radon test kit. During National Radon Action Month in January, approximately 1,500 radon test kits were sent out to Marylanders who were eager to learn about the radon levels in their homes. Radon exposure is a health hazard with a simple solution. Radon is an invisible, odorless radioactive gas in the earth…

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EPA Seeking Nominations for Local Government Advisory Committee

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is accepting nominations to serve on its Local Government Advisory Committee (LGAC).  Members of the Committee advise EPA on a variety of topics including improving access to clean air and water, climate change response, greenhouse gas emission reduction, and more. Candidates must be current elected or appointed officials representing local, state, tribal or territorial governments. From the press release: “Local and state partnerships are vital to EPA’s mission of…

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Baltimore County, Utility Partnering to Install EV Charging Stations

This week, Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski announced that the County is partnering with Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) to bring more charging stations to the area. Building upon other sustainability measures, Baltimore County is working to get 28 new electric vehicle charging stations installed at no cost to the County. Stations will allow EV owners to charge their vehicles with either Level 2 smart chargers or DC fast chargers. A strong charging station…

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MACo Supports Novel Approach to Address Septic System Pollution

MACo Executive Director Michael Sanderson yesterday testified in support of HB 878 Bay Restoration Fund - County Authority to Incur Indebtedness before the House Ways and Means Committee. This bill provides counties with an optional and flexible tool to make grants and loans to address septic system pollution. From the MACo Testimony: HB 878 authorizes a county to borrow money and incur indebtedness through the issuance and sale of notes in anticipation of the receipt of…

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