This morning Governor Tom Wolf released a report about oil train safety in Pennsylvania along with 27 recommendations. We’re still reviewing the report, but already we like what we see. The recommendations would go a long way toward improving safety along oil train routes here in Pennsylvania. For the full report click here, or scroll down for the list of recommendations: Primary Recommendations Railroad 1. It is recommended that the routes over which CBR trains operate in Pennsylvania be tested at a rate such that the service defect rate is maintained at 0.04 to 0.06 service failures/mile/year. In all cases, rail on these routes should be tested no less than three times a year. 2. It is recommended that the routes over which CBR trains operate in Pennsylvania be tested by a railroad owned Track Geometry Car at a minimum of four times a year. 3. It is recommended that the routes over which CBR trains operate in Pennsylvania be tested by a vision based joint bar inspection system at least once per year, this test to be in lieu of one of the required on-foot inspections, as permitted by FRA. 4. It is recommended that NS and CSX adopt the BNSF Railway voluntary speed reduction to 35 mph for crude oil trains through cities with a population greater than 100,000 people. 5. It is recommended that the railroad have sufficient Wheel Impact Load Detector (WILD) units in place to monitor all loaded oil train cars along their entire route within Pennsylvania, such that any track location on an oil train route within the state should have a WILD unit no more than 200 miles preceding (in the loaded...Read More
We’re screening 9 awesome films at our Wild & Scenic Environmental Film Festival this Saturday, August 8 in Ohiopyle! Here’s a preview of each of them. Please join us! Click here for more info. Adventures with a Purpose: A Higher Calling Renowned snowboarder, Jeremy Jones, teams up with Clif Bar and Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation to study glacial fresh water reserves across the globe. Get the facts with Dr Natalie Kehrwald and ride with Jeremy Jones as he collects ice samples from the high peaks of the Himalaya, on a mission to protect the places where we play. Dryden: The Small Town that Changed the Fracking Game The industry kept saying: ‘We have the power; you have none. We are coming. Get out of the way or leave,” said Joanne Cipolla-Dennis, recalling what happened when the oil and gas industry came to her town of Dryden, NY. But Joanne and her neighbors came up with a plan. This is the true story of people who discovered their shared strength and turned the tables on a powerful industry. Overburdened: Undermined For years, strip mining by coal companies has taken a toll on both the people and the environment of Alabama. This sobering documentary explores the devastating impacts of this industry on water quality, local communities, and wildlife in the Black Warrior River watershed. The Ridge Danny Macaskill is a very good bike rider. A very, very good bike rider. So he climbed a mountain near his home on the Isle of Skye and did something that will make you scream with joy and horror. Backyard Backyard tells the stories of five people in four states, all with very different backgrounds and...Read More
On July 17, 2015, MWA filed an amicus, or friend of the court, brief with the Interior Board of Land Appeals (“IBLA”). This marks the next step in our continued fight against Amerikohl’s mining operations at the Curry site. We have continued our opposition because of the significant threat this site poses for the Youghiogheny River watershed and gorge. We hope this brief will result in a precedent-setting decision. To put this most recent filing in context, it is important to first consider the history of MWA’s struggle with this site and the legal landscape we are working in. Amerikohl’s Curry surface mine is located in the heavily forested, wild, and remote Youghiogheny River gorge in southwestern Pennsylvania. It is entirely surrounded by public lands. It is located within three high-quality watersheds, the second highest level of stream designation in the Commonwealth. This area is used extensively for recreation including cycling, paddling, and fishing. Of particular note is the fact that it borders the Great Allegheny Passage. In order to mine this sensitive area, Amerikohl needed to obtain zoning approval from Fayette County and a permit to mine from the Department of Environmental Protection (“DEP”). Amerikohl first attempted to gain zoning approval in 2009. Because of MWA’s opposition, Amerikohl’s efforts failed and despite its appeals all the way to the Commonwealth Court, its zoning was not approved. Also in 2009, Amerikohl applied for its state mining permit. Despite MWA’s best efforts, the DEP approved that permit in 2011. In 2012, Amerikohl again applied for zoning approval. This time Fayette approved its application. MWA’s appeal of that approval is currently pending. In 2011, at the same time MWA was contesting...Read More
We have a unique approach in that we pursue on-the-ground restoration of past damage while also advocating on local issues as well as regional and national issues that have a local impact. Learn more about us and our work.
We’re hosting this great annual event on September 26th. We hope to see you there! Click here for details.