Protecting the County’s Natural Resources
The Bucks County Conservation District works to educate and help people and the community take care of the natural resources in Bucks County including soil, water, wildlife, trees and other plants. Using natural resources wisely helps to ensure their availability well into the future.
DEP Updates to NPDES NOI
The PA DEP has recently updated the NPDES NOI form and Checklist. The new forms can be found in the Permitting Documents section of our website. The only difference with this NOI is an interim step to address buffers according to Act 162. The Department is developing technical guidance for Act 162 and will be making another update around the second week of February to address Act 162. THERE ARE NO OTHER CHANGES TO THE NOI/APPLICATION AT THIS TIME.
Northern Long-Eared Bat Considered Threatened Species under the ESA
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on April 1, 2014 it is protecting the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), primarily due to the threat posed by white-nose syndrome, a fungal disease that has devastated many bat populations. At the same time, the Service issued an interim special rule that eliminates unnecessary regulatory requirements for landowners, land managers, government agencies and others in the range of the northern long-eared bat. These measures are designed to protect northern long-eared bats when they are most vulnerable, including when they are hibernating and during the two-month pup-rearing season from June through July.
The listing becomes effective on May 4, 2015, 30-days after publication of the final listing determination in the Federal Register. This final listing was published in the Federal Register on April 2, 2015.
Habitat screening for the Northern Long-Eared Bat will be required in all counties in Pennsylvania beginning on Monday May 4, 2015.
PADEP 2015 Growing Greener Grant Round Open!
PADEP has opened the 2015 Growing Greener grant round. Please click here for the application package. The application deadline is July 10, 2015. Bucks County's 2 largest watersheds, the Neshaminy Creek and the Tohickon Creek, have been identified as priority areas for this funding round.
TreeVitalize Watersheds 2016 Grant Round is Open
TreeVitalize Watersheds, which offers funding to purchase plant material for riparian buffer restoration and basin naturalization projects, has opened a grant round for planting projects planned for Spring or Fall 2016. Please visit our TreeVitalize Watersheds page for more information and copy of the grant announcement/eligibility criteria.
On October 22, Governor Tom Corbett signed H.B. 1565 into law, creating Act 162. This Act amends Section 402 of the Pennsylvania clean Streams Law by creating a new subsection to address the mandatory riparian buffer requirements in Chapter 102. The law becomes effective December 21, 2014. Act 162 includes two general provisions: 1) riparian buffers are a non-mandatory option for NPDES permittees; AND 2) riparian buffer off-sets are required for all projects that do not choose a riparian buffer BMP approach.
You may have wondered how this will impact you or how DEP plans to implement these changes. Over the next several weeks, DEP plans to draft guidance documents and other helpful resources to bring you up to speed on Act 162, and to provide a smooth transition to these new requirements.
BCCD is Keep Bucks Beautiful
Did you know that the BCCD is the local affiliate of the state-wide organization Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful?
Keep Bucks Beautiful was formed 4 years ago to help fulfill the mission of Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful (KPB) in Bucks County. KPB works to eliminate illegal dumping and littering in Pennsylvania. A survey of the County was completed in 2011 identifying over 100 illegal dumpsites in Bucks County. Since then, Keep Bucks Beautiful along with partner groups such as the Greenbelt Alliance Of Levittown (GOAL) have worked to clean those sites up and protect them from future dumping.
We welcome you to join us in our effort to beautify Bucks County! The Illegal Dump Survey for Bucks and other counties can be viewed at www.keeppabeautiful.org. There you will also find great information about other programs and opportunities to protect our environment. Start planning now to participate in the Great American Cleanup this coming spring! You can register an event, and receive free supplies!
There are always opportunities to contribute. We hope you join in the effort!