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at ClearWater Conservancy

 

2010 Meeting Highlights

January 13, 2010 - General Meeting - at Willowbank Building Room 317.

Steve Lupis distributed the replacement chemicals to teams who had not already received them.

Marcellus shale drilling is presently occurring in the Beech Creek Watershed area.  There is concern that adequate monitoring on affected area streams will not be done.  Dr. Mohamed Khalequzzaman (Dr. K) from Lock Haven University discussed locations of the current well sites and future drilling sites using a very detailed GIS map.  He presented background information on the drilling operations and their implications for environmental impacts.   He proposed several stream monitoring sites upstream and downstream of several drilling sites. CCPaSEC will participate in the monitoring of some sites.  Participants and tests to be completed will be determined shortly.  It was suggested that we perform the tests that we currently do at all our sites as a starting point.  If any member is interested in participating in this monitoring, please contact Doug Macneal or Steve Lupis.

James R. Walker, Beech Creek Assn. president will discuss monitoring efforts at the next meeting of the Beech Creek Watershed Assn. on Monday, Jan. 18, at Beech Creek Borough Bldg., 7:00 p.m

3 new members were welcomed into the group.

Election of officers was held.  The following are the results:

  • President - Doug Macneal
  • Vice President & ClearWater Conservancy liason - Mick McKay
  • Secretary - Genie Robine
  • Treasurer - Helen Perry

Loretta Jeffreys will work with Ann Donovan on a grant application.

Mick McKay listed ClearWater Conservancy's upcoming events and accomplishments in 2009.

ClearWater's fundraiser "For the Love of Art & Chocolate" will be held on January 22, 6:30-10:00 pm at the Penn Stater Conference Center.  Tickets ($30.00) are available through Mick McKay or from ClearWater.

The next meeting will be on February 10, at the Willowbank building, Room 317.

March 10, 2010 - General Meeting - at Willowbank Building Room 317.

A letter of inquiry (LOI) was submitted to the Foundation for PA Watersheds requesting a grant for the purchase of testing kits and supplies for the Marcellus shale testing sites.  Loretta Jeffreys and Steve Lupis worked with Ann Donovan on the grant LOI.

Manuals - The files for the Field and Test Kit Manuals were obtained from Melinda Hughes-Wert (Nature Abounds).  These have been posted on the CCPaSEC website.  They are available to members only after logging in to the site.

Doug Mcneal gave a report on a Waterdogs Training Session he attended.  The purpose was to learn about monitoring streams for the effects of Marcellus shale gas well drilling.  A discussion of the tests we would do at several Marcellus shale drilling sites followed.  Dr. K and Dr. Way from Lock Haven University will be contacted on which tests should be done before grant applications will be sent out.  A representative from AALARM (Alliance for Aquatic Resource Monitoring) was also in attendance at the training session.  ALLARM will be contacted to send someone to speak at one of our future meetings.

Six new members were trained at the February training session.   Ralph Locklin developed and distributed a questionnaire for feedback on the session.  A training video may be produced for obtaining stream flow measurements.  This could be used when weather conditions would not permit actual stream flow measurement.

Mick McKay presented a Quality Control report on the Lick Run and Little Fishing Creek data.  Graphs of the various data versus time were examined.  He noted where test results were out of range considered acceptable.  This type of graphing with our monitoring data, enables us to see where red flags might be raised to question a result, redo a test, or decide whether some changes need  to be reported.

Bacteria Sampling - Angela Bransteitter, with DEP, will be asking for volunteers to collect bacteria samplings on some of our streams this summer.  Results from summer sampling in 2009 on Elk Creek and Little Fishing Creek were presented.

A demonstration of the new features of the CCPaSEC website was given.  New menu items for Data Help, and Document Help were shown along with the log-in procedure for members to access members-only features of the site.

The next meeting will be on April 14, at the Willowbank building, Room 144.

April 14, 2010 - General Meeting - at Willowbank Building Room 144.

Doug Macneal gave a report on the Marcellus monitoring meetings held at Lock Haven University (LHU) on April 9, 2010.  Teams 13 & 14 will monitor 6 locations up and down stream from gas-well drilling locations.  Teams will perform pH, conductivity, total dissolved solids (TDS), sulfates, water temperature, and stream flow tests & measurements.  Samples will be collected and taken to Dr. Khalequzzaman's (Dr. K) lab at LHU for chloride, barium, salinity, hardness, and other testing.  If unusual readings are found by the teams' tests, Jamie Walker of Beech Creek Watershed Association will be notified.  He will then alert Dr. K, the media, and PA DEP, when appropriate.  Loretta Jeffreys will finish writing a grant for funds to pay for chemicals and equipment when needs have been determined.

Bacteria Sampling - Angela Bransteitter, with DEP, spoke on the protocol for collecting samples for the Pa DEP's bacteria sampling project.  The importance of preventing contamination of the water samples was stressed.  Fecal coliform tests are used as indicators.  She noted that results from 2009 sampling done on Elk Creek and Little Fishing Creek are part of an Integrated Report submitted to EPA and have now been published (April 3, 2010).  The streams' water quality for recreational use (swimming, boating, and fishing) were obtained from testing the samples.  She noted that the water quality standards are different for aquatic life health.  Teams 3, 5, and 13 have volunteered to do the bacteria sampling for the summer of 2010.

Several members will present a field test "training" session at the West Branch Susquehanna Stream Recovery Symposium on May 6 and 7 in Williamsport.  Details of the symposium are available at http://www.wbsrc.com/symposium.html

The 2010 PA Watersheds Summit will be held at the Ramada Inn in State College on Saturday, May 1, 2010, 8:00-4:30.  The cost for registration which extends until April 28 is $25.  Details are available at http://pawatershedsummit2010.wordpress.com .

Meeting Locations - The May, June, and July, and September general meetings will be held at Laurel Haven Environmental Education Center in Julian. (map)

Mick McKay gave a ClearWater update.  Genie Robine and Brianna Huchison are working to create a program to allow individuals on probation in the Department of Corrections to perform roadside clean-ups as part of their sentences.  Ann Donovan and Brianna will produce a video highlighting the Watershed Clean-up Day on April 17.

Carnegie House coupons are available which give a donation of 10%  of a food bill to ClearWater Conservancy when presented when dining.

A list of upcoming ClearWater events can be found on the ClearWater website.

The next meeting will be on May 12, 9:30 am at Laurel Haven Environmental Education Center in Julian. (map)

May 12, 2010 - General Meeting - at Laurel Haven Environmental Center.

Doug Macneal reported on the Marcellus monitoring tour on May 11, 2010.  Dr. Khalequzzaman (Dr. K), Dr. Way and others from Lock Haven University (LHU), several members from Teams 13 & 14 and CCPaSEC, Ann Donovan, and Jamie Walker from Beech Creek Watershed Association were present.  Exact site locations were determined (lattitude & longitude), and several parameters were measured using Dr. K's meters.  Samples were collected for transport to Dr. K's lab at LHU for chloride, barium, salinity, hardness, and other testing.

Grant Proposal - Inclusion of a request for funds to partially cover gas expenses for Marcellus shale Teams 13 & 14 was discussed.  The mileages for the sites' routes are far beyond what other teams travel to monitor other site locations.  Loretta Jeffreys will be notified to include mileage funds in a  grant proposal for funds to pay for chemicals and equipment when needs have been determined.

Bacteria Sampling - Stream samples to be tested this summer for bacterial testing will be collected from Penns Creek, Buffalo Run, and Beech Creek.  Labs used for testing are the UAJA and the Bellefonte Sewage Treatment Plant.  Results will be sent to Angela Bransteitter at PA DEP.

Doug will give Stream Bottom and Habitat Assessment training at our next Quality Control workshop in September.

West Branch Susquehanna (WBS) Stream Recovery  Symposium, May 6 and 7 in Williamsport - Day 1: Presentations included cleanup of Abandoned Mine Drainage (AMD) efforts and successes in the WBS River watershed. Day 2: Several CCPaSEC members presented a chemical testing "training" session. Others presented habitat assessment and stream flow measurement training.  Details of the symposium are available at http://www.wbsrc.com/symposium.html

The 2010 PA Watersheds Summit was held May 1, 2010 in State College.  Several members and Ann Donovan attended.  Organizational and technical breakout sessions were held.  AMD and Marcellus shale issues were discussed.  Technical resources for watershed and environmental/educational groups were presented which included the Datashed database, grants, GIS mapping, quality control/quality assurance, and macroinvertebrate training/identification.  Details from the summit are available at http://pawatershedsummit2010.wordpress.com .

Growing Greener Support -The 10th Anniversary of  the Growing Greener program was noted. A discussion of individual and/or organizational support was held for renewing Growing Greener funding.  The program and a timetable for expressing our individual and/or organizational views will be investigated.  For more information on the Growing Greener program, visit http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/growing_greener/13958/what_is_growing_greener_/588899

"Business"-type name cards listing member's name, CCPaSEC's website info, and member's or CCPaSEC's email address are available for members to print out.  Contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more info.

August Picnic - (August 11 tentative date) Clearfield County chapter of PaSEC will be invited to join our chapter for our annual picnic at Black Moshannon State Park.  Participants will be asked to bring a covered dish to share, table service, and drinks.

The next meeting will be held on June 9, 9:30 am at Laurel Haven Environmental Education Center in Julian. (map)

 

June 9, 2010 - General Meeting - at Laurel Haven Environmental Center.

Bacteria Sampling - The first five Beech Creek stream samples have been collected already this summer for bacterial testing.

Travel Expense Reimbursement for Marcellus Teams - Inclusion of a request for funds in a grant to partially cover gas expenses for Marcellus shale Teams 13 & 14 was discussed again.  Anadarco will also be contacted for possible travel expense reimbursement.

Chemicals and Equipment Funding - Melinda Hughes-Wert of Nature Abounds received a grant from the US EPA 319 Fund for assisting the PaSEC's with chemicals and equipment purchases and database and website development.  We will forward to her a list of needed chemicals and equipment.

Growing Greener - Ann Donovan gave background information on the Growing Greener program. A discussion of individual and/or organizational support was held for renewing Growing Greener funding.  It was decided to send a letter of our organization's support for this funding renewal to our legislators. Individuals also had the opportunity to sign a petition of support.  For more information on the Growing Greener program, visit http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/growing_greener/13958/what_is_growing_greener_/588899

Clean Water Act - It was decided to support America's Commitment to Clean Water Act  (HR 5088) legislation.  Doug Macneal will send a letter of support to Rep. Glenn Thompson.

August Picnic - (August 11 tentative date) Clearfield County chapter of PaSEC has been invited to join our chapter for our annual picnic at Black Moshannon State Park.  They will notify us of their intentions following their June 7th meeting. Participants will be asked to bring a covered dish to share, table service, and drinks.

ClearWater Conservancy's upcoming events were highlighted.  For more info, visit the ClearWater's website.

The next meeting will be held on July 14, 9:30 am at Laurel Haven Environmental Education Center in Julian. (map)

 

July 14, 2010 - General Meeting - at Laurel Haven Environmental Center.

Bacteria Sampling - The Beech Creek stream samples have been completed already this summer for bacterial testing.  Wallace team will start collecting in July.  Penns Creek sampling is underway.

Travel Expense Reimbursement for Marcellus Teams - A discussion of soliciting funds for travel reimbursement was again held.

Chemicals and Equipment Funding - Melinda Hughes-Wert of Nature Abounds will be contacted at the August Picnic concerning  assisting CCPaSEC with chemicals and equipment purchases.  We will also forward to her a list of needed chemicals and equipment.

Macro Data -  Data sheets have been developed in Google Docs to house each monitoring site's Macro data.  Data enterers for each team have been sent the links and instructions for data entry.  Little Fishing Creek and Lick Run sites' data sheets have been linked to from CCpaSEC's website on the Monitored Sites and Data web page under the Biosurvey Data heading.

Meeting Locations - CCPaSEC will request the reservation of a room at Willowbank building for all meetings in the future except for Quality Control (QC)/workshop training dates and the picnic date.

Team Leaders will be asked to have at least one member attend each meeting and 2 team members for QC workshop/meetings.

August Picnic - (August 11) Clearfield County chapter of PaSEC will join our chapter for our annual picnic at Black Moshannon State Park.  Those attending are asked to bring a covered dish to share, table service, and drinks.  Friends and significant others are invited.

New members are needed to join teams low in membership.  RSVP will be contacted to help in the recruiting process.

ClearWater Conservancy's upcoming events were highlighted.  For more info, visit the ClearWater's website.

The next picnic/meeting will be held on August 11, 9:30 am at Black Moshannon State Park in Julian. (map)

 

August 11, 2010 - General Meeting & Picnic- at Black Moshannon State Park.

17 CCPaSEC members and a guest attended the joint Centre/Clearfield County PaSEC picnic. A new member was introduced to the group. During the meeting, it was decided to put on hold for now transportation reimbursement requests to Anadarko for the Marcellus Teams until further input from ClearWater Conservancy is received.

Meters and chemicals replacements will be ordered from Nature Abounds.

Mick McKay gave a presentation on the flow and diffusion of pollutants as they mix with the volume of stream flow.

Team leaders will be asked to have a representative from their team attend the monthly general meetings.

Melinda Hughs-Wert gave an update on the progress of Nature Abounds with regards to funding and database development.

Dr. K. gave a short update of the progress of the Marcellus Shale monitoring progress. Procedures are working well for collecting samples and samples have been tested. Results will be provided to us in electronic form.

The next meeting will be the Quality Control meeting, September 8, 2010 at 9:30 am at Laurel Haven Environmental Center in Julian. (map) Each team should have two members present and bring their kit.

 

September 8, 2010 - General Meeting & Quality Control Session - at Laurel Haven Environmental Center.

18 CCPaSEC members attended the Quality Control Session and general meeting.

Bacteria Testing - Steve Lupis reported that Team 3 is completing its second set of collection samples. This will complete the 2010 samplings.

Marcellus Monitoring Sites - The Marcellus monitoring sites (markers 1-9) are now marked on the Site Maps section of the web site. There is now a Marcellus task force at the Centre County Planning Office and a Marcellus Center at PSU.

Executive Committee Report - An executive committee meeting was held since the last meeting. The following items were decided:

  • An executive committee meeting will be held each January to review the previous year and plan for the upcoming year.
  • A nominating committee for next year's officers was formed, with Steve Lupis as the chairperson.
  • A new Macroinvertebrate Sampling Squad headed by Genie Robine will be formed, beginning in the 2011 year. This group will work to assure that the macro sampling is completed and data recorded for all teams, twice per year.
  • More guest speakers will be invited to our meetings.
  • The 10th anniversary of our CCPaSEC group is coming up in 2012. Promotional literature and publications for this were discussed. This will require a group leader and a committee.

Spring Creek Day at Millbrook Marsh will be held on the afternoon of October 3rd . Several members will represent us there with our display board, brochures, and possibly other demos/activities.

At our annual Quality Control meeting, a different format was followed this year. All teams did the same test from the same water sample and recorded results. Those results will be reviewed and reported on. The status of available chemicals and the chemical replacements needed for all teams were determined. A battery check for all meters was completed and meters were calibrated.

The next meeting will be Wednesday, October 13, 2010 starting at the Elk Creek, Millheim Narrows site at 9:30 am. Doug Macneal will send out directions in advance of the October meeting. This will be a Habitat Assessment Training & meeting so you will need at least 1 person from each team to attend!

 

October 13, 2010 - General Meeting & Habitat Training Session - at Elk Creek Team 5 Sites.

16 CCPaSEC members attended the Habitat Training Session and general meeting.

Using the Stream Habitat Assessment Field Data Sheet, Doug Macneal led members in assessing various stream habitat parameters at the Centre Mill site along Elk Creek.  Members compared results. The second site was along Elk Creek at the Milleim Narrows where a vast habitat difference from the first location was noted. Habitat Assessments should be completed twice each year by each of our teams at their monitoring sites. Thanks to Doug for arranging and conducting this training session. The final location was Coburn Park where the meeting was held.

Meters and Chemicals - Steve Lupis will order four Oakton meters and liquid standard solutions for meter calibrations.

Marcellus Monitoring Sites - The road in the area of the well sites along Kato-Orviston Road has been widened and paving nearly complete, making room for laying pipeline. No stream changes have been noted during monitoring. Team pictures and site location pictures have been taken and will be posted on our website. Discussion was held concerning the possible loss of funding of Dr. K's research from Lock Haven University for Marcellus Shale sites monitoring. The possibilities of working with Penn State will be explored. Marcellus Shale information is available from the Penn State College of Agriculture Sciences Cooperative Extension and also at the Penn State Marcellus Center for Outreach and Research.

Four members represented our CCPaSEC at Spring Creek Day at Millbrook Marsh on October 3rd . Susan Budha of the Susquehanna River Basin Commission assisted in a stream study for children.

New Officers - The January 12, 2011, meeting will be a meeting for new and outgoing officers and committee chairpersons. The nominating committee will have a slate of officers prepared for a vote at the November meeting. The new officers will take office with the January meeting. The slate of officers will be emailed to the membership prior to the November meeting.

Guest Speakers - It was suggested that Tom Murphy, a Marcellus Shale researcher from Penn State, might be a possible speaker.

New Members - New members have been placed on Teams. Ralph Locklin is looking for placements on Teams for other new members and has asked that Team leaders inform him of their needs.

The next meeting will be Wednesday, November 10, 2010 in the Willowbank Building in Bellefonte at 9:30 am in Room 317.

 

November 10, 2010 - General Meeting - at Willowbank Building Room 317

17 CCPaSEC members attended the general meeting.

Meters and Chemicals - Four Oakton meters and liquid standard solutions for meter calibrations have been ordered.

Grant from Trout Unlimited - The grant has been received!  Thank you TU!!!!

Assistance with the Water Resources Monitoring Project - Brianna Hutchison does stream, spring, and well monitoring and data recording for the WRMP. She asked for our assistance with monitoring and data recording, and sample collection on a short term basis. Training sessions will be held for members who volunteer to download data from loggers, using a laptop computer, at 11 sites. Volunteers are also needed to collect water samples from 14 stream sites and 7 spring sites, and prepare the samples to be sent to PA DEP.

Quality Control Summary Report - Mick McKay presented a handout summarizing our Annual Quality Control session, held on September 8th.  Mick charted the test results from all Teams and discussed the results with us.  It should be noted that it takes at least 2 minutes to stabilize meters and that care should be taken to be sure meters are stabilized before taking readings.

Mick prepared a chart of our PaSEC Teams' pH and Sulfate data, plus a comparison of data on alkalinity for Little Fishing Creek and Moshannon Creek.

Important Water Issues in PA - Mick reviewed 3 important water issues in PA - acid mine drainage, Chesapeake Bay pollutants run-off, and Marcellus Shale chemicals. Mick's handout gave information on nine water quality tests, Chesapeake Bay Clean-up Plans, and a brief review of Marcellus Shale issues.

Poster from Dr. K - Dr. K., from Lock Haven University prepared a large poster with pictures and the data, to date, of the Marcellus Shale monitoring sites in the Beech Creek Watershed Area. He presented the poster to the Susquehanna River Heartland Coalition and to the Susquehanna River Basin Commission. CCPaSEC was given a copy of the poster. It will be laminated and displayed at various places such as the Willowbank Building and the ClearWater office.

Grant for Marcellus Shale Monitoring Sites - A grant was submitted by Ann Donovan, on our behalf, to PA DEP-Water Quality and Regulations Standards to cover costs involved with monitoring the Beech Creek watershed sites in the Marcellus Shale drilling area. It will cover travel costs for the team members, lab testing analysis, and macroinvertebrate analysis once a year. The grant was awarded and will begin in approximately March of 2011 and end in 2012. Thanks Ann!!!

Officer Elections for 2011 - The results are as follows: (1 year terms) President - Mick McKay, Vice President - Lou Mayer, Secretary - Ella Bashore, Treasurer - Ellen Perry.

One-hour Webinars on Water Use and Water Reuse/Recycling in Marcellus Shale Gas Exploration - on the following dates: December 16th- "Plumbing the Depths in PA"; January 20th-Marcellus Shale Legislation; Feb 16th-Dealing with Gas Tax Issues; March 17th-Natural Gas Well Development and Emergency Response and Management. For more information, contact John Turack at 724-837-1402 or email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

The next meeting will be Wednesday, December 8, 2010 in the Willowbank Building in Bellefonte at 9:30 am in Room 317.  A Luncheon will follow at the Gamble Mill restaruant in Bellefonte.

 

December 8, 2010 - General Meeting - at Willowbank Building Room 317

18 CCPaSEC members attended the general meeting.

Assistance with the Water Resources Monitoring Project -  Our assistance with monitoring and data recording will probably not be needed since ClearWater will be hiring a staff person in the near future for those tasks for the WRMP project. Genie Robine organized several sample collection outings for springs and streams in December.  The water samples collected from 14 stream sites and 7 spring sites will be prepared and sent to PA DEP. CCPaSEC will continue to be a resource and provide continuity for the WRMP project.

Poster from Dr. K - The large poster with pictures and the data, to date, of the Marcellus Shale monitoring sites in the Beech Creek Watershed Area prepared by Dr. K., from Lock Haven University, was laminated and will be displayed at various places such as the January Spring Creek Watershed Commission meeting, the Willowbank Building and the ClearWater office.

Grant for Marcellus Shale Monitoring Sites -  The 2 year grant is in its final stages of review but Ann Donovan has not received the final contract yet. It specifies that bromide testing should be part of the protocol, but the labs at PSU do not typically do that test. Brian Walters is the contact person at DEP for the grant.

The January meeting will be an Executive Committee meeting instead of a general meeting.  Incoming and outgoing officers and the chairpersons for supplies, membership, training, and website should also be in attendance.  The next general meeting will be in February.

Possible guest speakers for some our meetings may include Bryan Swistock and Tom Murphy, one of the directors of the Penn State Marcellus Shale Center.

The need for training presentations were discussed.  A committee will be formed to work on this.  Anyone interested in helping should contact Ralph Locklin.

A Monitoring and Chemicals Testing and a Macroinvertebrate Survey video, have been added to the website courtesy of Laurie Jeffries and Teams 1 and 12.

Lou Mayer will replace Mick McKay as our representative on ClearWater Conservancy's Board of Directors.

Doug Macneal and Genie Robine who served CCPaSEC for 8 years as president and secretary respectively were honored by our membership with framed certificates recognizing their immense contributions to the group.

ClearWater Conservancy's fundraiser, For the Art & Love of Chocolate, will take place Friday, Jan. 28, 2011, 7-9:30 p.m.

One-hour webinars will be held on Water Use and Water Reuse/Recycling in Marcellus Shale Gas Exploration on the following dates: "Plumbing the Depths in PA"; January 20th-Marcellus Shale Legislation; Feb 16th-Dealing with Gas Tax Issues; March 17th-Natural Gas Well Development and Emergency Response and Management. For more information, contact John Turack at 724-837-1402 or email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

A Luncheon followed the meeting at the Gamble Mill restaurant in Bellefonte.

The next general meeting will be Wednesday, February 9, 2010 in the Willowbank Building in Bellefonte at 9:30 am in Room 317.

 

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