Armstrong Conservation District Holds Municipal Workshop

Pictured are Gregg Smith, Resource Conservationist DGLVR (left), and Ken Blake, Mahoning Township Supervisor. Photo provided by Armstrong County Conservation District.

The Armstrong Conservation District held a workshop for municipal officials on December 15, 2020. Thirty-nine municipal officials representing fifteen municipalities attended the workshop. Topics included stormwater management ordinances; dirt, gravel, and low volume road program (DGLVR) updates; MS4 permit requirements; and meeting MS4 compliance using environmentally sensitive maintenance practices on DGLVR and watershed restoration efforts.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Perry County Conservation District Holds Field Day & Launches Podcast

Photo provided by Perry County Conservation District.

On August 7, 2020, the Perry County Conservation District held an equipment demo day. A diverse audience of farmers attended, ranging from those concerned about soil health to farmers who use 100% tillage. Demonstrations included soil disturbance by running a grain drill and no-till equipment.A rainfall simulator was shared, and many conversations were started about erosion versus the ability to get the seed in the ground in less than ideal conditions.

The district also created a podcast to facilitate sharing farmers’ success stories to create a positive culture around conservation. Click here to listen to the “Carefully Cultivated” podcast, which currently has 11 episodes!

Financial and other support for the NPS Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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$60,000 Available for 2021-22 Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts

Thanks to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection continuing to support conservation district educational projects, PACD is ready to open a new round of Nonpoint Source (NPS) Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grants!

Grants up to $2,000 are awarded to conservation districts for adult educational projects that offer strategies for reducing and preventing NPS Pollution. Projects should stimulate a local awareness of water quality issues, promote the theme “We All Live Downstream,” and encourage citizen participation in activities to improve water quality in local watersheds.

The deadline for NPS mini-grant applications is January 29, 2021. Click here for the online application and more information. Questions should be directed to Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org.  

Financial and other support for the NPS Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Template Signage Available

PACD received a PA Department of Environmental Protection Environmental Education grant for Template Watershed Signage. This project aims to provide templates for conservation districts to use for interpretative signage to educate the public on completed stream restoration projects. Draft versions of the signs were shown to the watershed specialists during their annual meeting in October.

The templates are complete and now available at this link. The topics are vegetative buffers, fish structures, and macroinvertebrates. The templates are in Publisher so districts can insert their logo, update the URL and phone number, and swap out photos.

Districts may apply for the Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Mini-grant program (see above) to create a sign using the templates. Contact Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org about what should be included in this type of application.

Thanks to Tammy Piper at Franklin County Conservation District for partnering with PACD on this project.

Financial and other support for this signage has been provided by the Department of Environmental Protection’s 2020 Environmental Education Grants Program.

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New PACD Mini-grant Rounds Opening in January

Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts

The 2021-22 round of the Nonpoint Source Pollution Prevention Educational Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts opens on January 4, 2021! The funding provided through this program supports conservation districts to implement water quality and pollution prevention education programs for adult audiences. The program will award up to $2,000.

Click here for guidance and the application in Word. 

PACD will host a Zoom meeting on Wednesday, December 16, from 9:00 a.m. -10:00 a.m. to answer questions and discuss ideas districts may have for projects. PACD will also review an example of a good application and encourage discussion among participants about what has worked and what hasn’t in regard to past projects. Click here to register for the Zoom meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0tdu6srzIqG9GFr9yc5H3N3CBBs2p5aoFc

Contact PACD Director of Communications & Education Shannon Wehinger at swehinger@pacd.org with questions.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

CREP Mini-grant Program for Conservation Districts

This mini-grant program funds up to $1,000 for conservation districts to implement educational and outreach activities that support and extend the work of the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). Projects focus on CREP enrollment, re-enrollment, and/or CREP maintenance.

The grant round is scheduled to open on January 1 and end on June 1, 2021. Please contact PACD Program Manager Amy Brown at abrown@pacd.org to talk through your ideas. Projects will likely need to be virtual. Educational videos and webinars are encouraged.

Financial and other support for the CREP Outreach Program Office Mini-grant Program is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a Growing Greener Watershed Protection grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and with additional support from USDA-NRCS.

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Susquehanna County Conservation District Holds Virtual Rain Barrel Workshop

Pictured with the newly donated rain barrel at Ira Reynolds Riverside Park: Susquehanna Borough Community Development Coordinator, Valerie Senese, Conservation Specialist, Don Hibbard and Watershed Specialist, Nate Harpster. Missing from the photo: Borough Council President Roy Williams.

This past summer, the Susquehanna County Conservation District held an online rain barrel workshop to educate participants on managing stormwater in their community. Ten participants virtually explored the Chesapeake Bay watershed, acquired knowledge on water quality problems associated with the Chesapeake Bay watershed, and learned how individuals could reduce their stormwater footprint. Following the workshop, each participant was able to pick up a rain barrel to install on their property.

The grant also provided funding for two additional rain barrels to be purchased for environmental education purposes. One rain barrel has been donated to the borough of Susquehanna, where it will be installed at the newly opened Ira Reynolds Riverfront Park. The second rain barrel will be on display at the Susquehanna County Conservation District. Once installed, the public is encouraged to visit both locations to learn more about stormwater and see how a rain barrel functions.

Click here to read the entire press release. 

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Pike County Conservation District Produces Brochure & Website

Pike County Conservation District produced a bi-fold brochure titled “A Homeowner’s Checklist for a Watershed Friendly Home.” The brochure presents information about reducing nonpoint source pollution from private property in the form of a checklist homeowners can use to evaluate their own homes. These brochures have been distributed to the Pike County municipalities and will be handed out at future district events and other locations upon post-pandemic reopening.

To distribute the information more effectively in the current climate, the checklist was also made into an interactive, illustrated webpage (which can be viewed here: https://pikeconservation.org/checklist/, allowing people to access the checklist while remaining socially distanced.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Beaver County Conservation District Holds Stormwater Workshop for Homeowners

Screenshot from BCCD’s “Rain Barrel Workshop” video. The video shows how to assemble a rain barrel.

The week of October 12-16, 2020, the Beaver County Conservation District (BCCD) held a virtual workshop for homeowners on stormwater management. Susan Boser from Penn State Extension presented a program focusing on watersheds, nonpoint source pollution, and stormwater best management practices. The presentation is available here. BCCD Watershed Specialist Hannah Ward demonstrated how to build a rain barrel via video. Click here to view the video. Participants received a rain barrel kit after completing the online workshop.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Four Conservation Districts Join Forces for Virtual Forestry Workshop

Elk County Conservation District Manager Kate Wehler facilitates presenter introductions. Photo provided by McKean County Conservation District.

Every year a partnership of northcentral PA conservation districts holds a cooperative workshop for forest industry professionals. The popular full-day workshop includes best management practices for timber operations; regulatory information and updates, permitting needs; other current environmental considerations; and a field portion to look at real-life BMP scenarios and challenges.

This year’s four-hour “Erosion Control in Our Forests” webinar on October 1, 2020, had 119 participants, well exceeding normal attendance for the in-person event. Cameron, Elk, McKean, and Potter County Conservation Districts coordinated the event.

Click here to read the entire article. 

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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Juniata County Conservation District Holds Stormwater Workshop

Juniata County Conservation District provided the photo of the workshop.

Juniata County Conservation District held a workshop in McAlisterville for property owners and municipal staff on September 30, 2020. The “What’s the Point” workshop defined stormwater runoff and its sources, encouraged management and reduction of stormwater, and developed an understanding of stormwater’s effects on watersheds near and far.

The workshop was held in person and had thirteen participants. Municipal officials attended and engaged in brainstorming ways to be more effective in educating residents about stormwater management. The workshop also had a hands-on planting component.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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