Watersheds

Pennsylvania is endowed with a rich mosaic of wetlands, lakes, rivers, and creeks sustained by pure aquifers that provide drinking water and world-class recreational opportunity ranging from sport fishing to paddling. Pennsylvania’s unique landscape and abundant precipitation supports 86,000 miles of rivers and streams, the most of any state besides Alaska.

Sadly, 15,000 miles of creeks and rivers are not drinkable, fishable, or swimmable – the goals of the Clean Water Act of 1972.  A combination of stormwater run-off, municipal wastewater, agricultural run-off, abandoned mine drainage, and industrial discharges degrade streams and present a complex long-term challenge.

We dig deep to understand and address policy barriers and to gather and promote innovative solutions such as green stormwater infrastructure, water quality trading, and inter-municipal cooperative agreements. PEC coordinates watershed-based programs to manage stormwater and to restore watershed function.  Rainfall is treated as a precious natural resource to be slowed and infiltrated to recharge groundwater and support stream base flow through green infrastructure.

 

Watersheds

Community Illegal Dumpsite Cleanup Program

PEC has been working since 2007 to clean up illegal dumpsites through a multi-faceted approach.

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Programs

Other Recent Programs


Inside News and Policy

Regional Watershed Workshops Kick Off With Event in Southwest Pennsylvania
Featured Post

Regional Watershed Workshops Kick Off With Event in Southwest Pennsylvania

On March 8, PEC officially held the first of six regional watershed group workshops as part of a statewide initiative aimed at building local capacity for stewardship. Funded in part by a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s...

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What’s New

Pennsylvania Legacies #39: A Legacy of Service
PEC Blog

Pennsylvania Legacies #39: A Legacy of Service

May 19, 2017By: Josh Raulerson

PEC opposes a state Senate bill that would expose surface water to further impacts from underground mining, and we pay tribute to two western PA environmental leaders up for Lifetime Achievement honors at our spring awards dinner.     Links:...

Extreme Physiology Returns to NEPA
PEC Blog

Extreme Physiology Returns to NEPA

May 8, 2017By: Josh Raulerson

Students in the University of Scranton’s “Extreme Physiology” program learn about the physiological effects of different training environments by experiencing them firsthand. A new four-week summer course offering has participants hiking, biking, and paddling through the often rugged terrain of northeastern Pennsylvania to earn elective credits in...

Pennsylvania Legacies #37: Into the Woods
PEC Blog

Pennsylvania Legacies #37: Into the Woods

May 6, 2017By: Josh Raulerson

The Montour Woods Conservation Area outside Pittsburgh is a time capsule, studded with remnants of the area’s agricultural and industrial past. It’s also part of the pathway to a future when public parks and greenspaces across the region will be...

Policy Posts

PEC Opposes Senate Bill 624

May 18, 2017

Update (May 22): The Senate Environmental Resources & Energy Committee, in an “off-the-floor” vote, approved SB 624 as committed. The bill awaits consideration by the full Senate. *** Today PEC sent the following letter to the Senate Environmental Resources & Energy...

PEC Supports House Bill 417

February 10, 2017

Today PEC sent the following letter to the House Consumer Affairs Committee in support of House Bill 417. February 10, 2017 To:  Members of the House Consumer Affairs Committee From:  John Walliser, Pennsylvania Environmental Council Re:  Support for House Bill...

PEC Supports Senate Bill 30 and Senate Bill 192

January 31, 2017

The Pennsylvania Environmental Council sent the following letter to the Senate Game & Fisheries Committee today, offering support for Senate Bills 30 and 192. Dear Senators: In advance of tomorrow’s Senate Game & Fisheries Committee meeting, I would like to...