The best of Pennsylvania

From Valley Forge to the rolling fields of Gettysburg; from Pennsylvania’s portion of the Appalachian Trail and the Delaware Water Gap to Pennsylvania’s awe-inspiring state parks like Ohiopyle and Ricketts Glen. These are our greatest places—for PA and the nation—and where families hike, camp, fish and teach their kids about our state’s history.

Constant threats

Unfortunately, our state’s parks face a barrage of threats from encroaching overdevelopment, ongoing pollution, fracking and Marcellus Shale drilling, and coal mining. These activities would degrade these great places, threaten the wildlife that make the parks their home, and diminish the natural heritage that we’ll leave for our children and future generations.

Congress is moving in the wrong direction

To make matters worse, Congress is on the verge of decimating the nation’s most successful program that protects our parks and other open spaces from development and drilling—the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

For the past five decades, the Land and Water Conservation Fund’s mission has been to protect America’s greatest—and often most threatened—places. For Pennsylvania, that means places like Valley Forge, Gettysburg and our portion of the Appalachian Trail.

But if our elected officials don’t act soon, this critical program will end up on Congress’s cutting room floor, forever hindering America’s great legacy of conservation and protection for our best places.

Together, we can protect Pennsylvania’s parks

Saving the Land and Water Conservation Fund will be a tough challenge, but we’re up to the task. We are talking to Pennsylvanians about what’s at stake, testifying in Washington, D.C., educating lawmakers, and shining a spotlight in the media on the need to protect our parks. Please take action for our parks and email your member of Congress.

Preservation Updates

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Keep Pa. Growing Greener

Pennsylvania is fortunate to be full of priceless natural landscapes.

From the mountains of the Poconos, to the Susquehanna River, to the family farms of Amish farm country, and the historic green fields of Gettysburg — these are the types of places that make Pennsylvania great.

Knowing the incredible value of our state’s natural heritage, it’s shocking to know that elected officials in Harrisburg are on the verge of letting one of Pennsylvania’s most important conservation programs, known as Growing Greener, expire, putting many of these great places at risk.

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Gov. Corbett, Keep Our State Parks Public

Gov. Tom Corbett recently told reporters that our stunning state park system tops his short list of state assets to privatize along with liquor stores and prisons.

Pennsylvania’s state parks are one of the Commonwealth’s greatest resources, and we should value them as such. We should be working to repair, restore, expand and improve these places that make Pennsylvania great—not trying to sell them off to the highest bidder.

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Severance tax could be used to fund Growing Greener program

Incredibly, Pennsylvania remains the only major drilling state in the nation that has failed to implement a severance tax on gas drilling. Due to the destructive and dangerous nature of Marcellus Shale drilling, it only makes sense to direct a portion of the funds to the state's environmental and conservation programs, like Pennsylvania's Growing Greener program.

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Report | PennEnvironment Research and Policy Center

Grand Canyon at Risk

Uranium mining—which often requires vast open pits, spreads radioactive dust through the air, and leaks radioactivity and toxic chemicals into the environment—is among the riskiest industrial activities in the world. Every uranium mine ever operated in the United States has required some degree of toxic waste cleanup, and the worst have sickened dozens of people, contaminated miles of rivers and streams, and required the cleanup of hundreds of acres of land.

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News Release | PennEnvironment

PennEnvironment Applauds Executive Order to Protect State Forests

PennEnvironment applauds Governor Ed Rendell for signing an Executive Order today to ban any further leases for Marcellus Shale gas drilling in Pennsylvania’s state forests. While the drilling industry appears to be using its access and influence to run rampant in Harrisburg—most recently convincing the state Senate to hold up a natural gas severance tax—it is reassuring to see Gov. Rendell take such strong steps to protect this valuable resource.
 
Because all Pennsylvanians are the owners and stewards of our state forests, we have an obligation to protect them from encroaching gas drilling and all of the negative environmental impacts that come with it.

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