Feds Announce $140k for Shoreline and Green Infrastructure Projects in Maryland

Last week, members of Maryland's Congressional Delegation announced more than $140,000 in federal funding for shoreline and green infrastructure projects. The Maryland Department of the Environment will be receiving $142,758 in federal funding to protect wetlands and shorelines in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Funds come from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Wetland Program Development Grant program that provides resources for projects that promote research, training, and more for water pollution elimination. From the press release:…

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MD Congressional Reps Announce $13.4 Million for Wastewater Infrastructure in Cecil

Yesterday, U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressman Andy Harris announced $6,529,000 in federal funding to construct a new wastewater treatment plant in Chesapeake City. The new plant will replace two existing sites, and meet new nutrient removal requirements. Funds for the project come in the form of a $5,029,000 grant and a $1,500,000 loan from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development as a part of the Water and Waste Disposal…

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Maryland Joins Virginia, North Carolina in Agreement to Propel Offshore Wind Development

Governor Hogan joined the governors of North Carolina and Virginia today to announce a collaborative effort that would propel offshore wind projects and promote the region as a hub for the wind energy industry. The three states from the Mid-Atlantic and Southeast coast have come together to form the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic Regional Transformative Partnership for Offshore Wind Energy Resources (SMART-POWER) Leadership Team. From The Office of Governor Larry Hogan: “Maryland has been leading the…

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Howard County Executive  Announces Public Review of Forest Conservation Manual
Howard County Executive Calvin Ball at today's announcement (photo courtesy of Howard County Government)
Howard County Executive Announces Public Review of Forest Conservation Manual

Howard County Executive Calvin Ball just announced a 21-day public comment period on the county's Forest Conservation Manual draft. The goal of the guide is to detail how forest conservation should be handled before, during, and after the development process. From Howard County's press release: “For nearly two decades, our Forest Conservation Act remained unchanged. In recent years the Act’s out of date standards lacked real positive environmental impact,” said Ball. “Green infrastructure can no longer be…

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St. Mary’s Approves New Ordinance to Protect Waterways

Yesterday, the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County approved a new resolution regulating non-stormwater discharges to the storm drain system. Commissioners approved the Pollution Prevention and Illicit Discharge, Detection and Elimination resolution after County staff completed a thorough stakeholder outreach to ensure the community was on board with the proposal. Outlined in the ordinance are methods for controlling pollutants into the sewer system and enforcement guidelines. The ordinance will take effect on January 4, 2021. From…

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Howard Recertifies Status in Federal Flood Program

Howard County recently recertified its class six status in the annual Community Rating System (CRS) with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Status within the CRS allows residents of that community to take advantage of discounted rates for flood insurance. Currently, because of the class six rating, Howard County residents are eligible for a 20 percent discount on premiums if they reside within a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA), and 10 percent if they do…

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CARES Funding Available for MD Fishing Industry

Maryland to Provide $3 Million in Direct Assistance to Commercial Seafood Industry The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) this week announced that applications will be available on November 4 for economic relief funds for the commercial seafood industry through the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES), for those who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The application will be available to eligible members of the seafood industry on the Maryland…

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Feds Grant Maryland Over $20 Million for Drinking Water Projects

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that Maryland will receive $20,170,000 for drinking water improvement projects. The funds will go to the State's Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF) Program that provides low interest loans to communities for projects such as upgrades to existing drinking water treatment facilities and water transmission line replacement. The grant will be met by $4 million in state matching funds. From the press release: “EPA’s continued commitment to…

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Anne Arundel Rolls Out Program to Buy Flood-Prone Homes

Anne Arundel County is coordinating a pilot program along with the City of Annapolis and the Chesapeake Bay Trust to purchase properties that see frequent flooding. The program will use acquired properties to better protect other nearby areas from the impacts of frequent non-tidal or stormwater flooding, and give frustrated property owners a new option. The County has dedicated $1.3 million to the pilot program, and intends to purchase initially purchase only a few properties.…

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Offshore Seismic Testing Thwarted

Seismic air gun testing will not occur off the mid-Atlantic coast anytime soon after legal obstacles forced five companies to concede their permits which are set to expire next month. Oil and gas drilling companies use seismic air gun testing to find deposits of oil and natural gas below the ocean floor. High-powered air guns blast the ocean floor, and receivers trailing the watercraft measure the echoes. Many environmental groups have fought for years to…

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