Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Department of Natural Resources Secretary Collin O’Mara were on hand in Sussex County this week to applaud Cape Henlopen School District’s use of Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) funds to retrofit old diesel engines on district-owned school buses. Also on hand were representatives from the Clean Air Task Force, Clean Water Action, National School Transportation Association and the American Lung Association.
With all of the talk about universal recycling and the “bottle bill,” the state’s new yard-waste ban seems to have gone under the radar, but there are changes in that area for 2011, as well.
What better way to deal with waste than to find a way to re-use it? It’s been done forever. Everything from mushrooms to mums gets a little help from a homemade and readily available fertilizer made from manure – a material that could have just been landfilled. And, often, fields can stand a dose of nutrients that would have otherwise been trashed.
U.S. Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of Senate Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety, this week commended the House’s passage of the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act of 2010 (DERA).
Beginning Jan. 1, 2011, yard waste will be banned from disposal in Delaware Solid Waste Authority’s (DSWA) Kent and Sussex landfills near Sandtown and Georgetown. The ban goes into effect as part of a DNREC permit condition for landfill expansion and to encourage the recycling of the estimated 30,000 tons of yard waste deposited each year in the Kent and Sussex landfills.
Effective Jan. 1, 2011, yard waste can no longer be picked up with regular trash and taken to the landfill. This is a state regulation designed to increase landfill life, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase local production of mulch and compost.
The Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) for the Center for the Inland Bays (CIB) said goodbye and thank-you to outgoing CAC Chairman Ron Wuslich at their Dec. 7 meeting. Wuslich’s term does not end until August of 2011, but he put in his resignation earlier this fall, and fellow CAC member Bill Zak was nominated and accepted the challenge of filling in his shoes.
U.S. Sen. Tom Carper and incoming Sen. Chris Coons (both D-Del.), outgoing Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) and Gov. Jack Markell (D-Del.), commended the Obama administration last week for its action to streamline and expedite the application process for offshore wind energy projects.
What started as a way to aid in the World War I effort by reducing food consumption, according to MeatlessMondays.com, was revamped early this century by the John Hopkins School of Public Health as a way to cut saturated fat and reduce the risk of preventable disease – all while reducing people’s carbon footprint.
Last fall, poultry producer Doug Vanderwende attended a presentation about nutrient management and wetland restoration projects, prompting him to contact DNREC’s Drainage Program about a wetland project on his Greenwood farm. He provided a sketch that served as the basis for the project that was constructed last summer by the Sussex Conservation District and DNREC Drainage staff.
The Homebuilders Association of Delaware (HBADE) presented its top honor, the Builder of the Year award, at its annual Leadership and Legacy Ball on Nov. 20, and the award was presented to Bob Thornton, owner of Silverstock Builders in Bethany Beach.
During the Center for the Inland Bays’ Scientific & Technical Advisory Committee Meeting last week, Greg DeCowsky of the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) spoke on the Burton Island clean-up project.
The SEU’s Energize Delaware has selected three Delaware companies to conduct winning home energy makeovers – a free energy audit and computerized energy modeling (worth $400) and up to $5,000 in home efficiency improvements.
Arsenic is a naturally occurring metal that can be toxic to people, estuarine organisms, and the environment at high concentrations. It is present in feed additives used to raise poultry, in some types of pressure-treated wood and in the residual ash of coal burned to produce electricity.
Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) Secretary Colin O’Mara met with members of the Center for the Inland Bays’ Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) at their Oct. 20 meeting, and the basic notion of how they talk to each other was one of the topics on the agenda.
Kent and Sussex County residents who take yard waste to the Central and Southern Waste Management centers near Sandtown and Georgetown can no longer co-mingle yard waste with regular trash starting Jan. 1, 2011. The restrictions will join those already in place in New Castle County, which has had a yard-waste ban at the Cherry Island landfill since 2008.
For those who are not the type to look up what a TMDL* is (or care), or whose eyes gloss over at the mere mention of scientific phrases like “nitrogen-rich soil” or “algae bloom” but do concede that the inland bays are not quite the “swimmable and fishable” gems they once were, a visit from the Citizens Advisory Committee’s (CAC) outreach program might be the ticket to get educated just enough to want to get involved.
Lieutenant Gov. Matt Denn and the Delaware Economic Development Office announced on Oct. 12 that the State of Delaware has created a new $1 million revolving loan fund to help jump-start businesses specializing in energy efficiency. The fund was made possible by a $500,000 grant from the United States Department of Commerce, which was matched by a contribution from the state’s Strategic Fund.
After receiving public feedback and consumer pushback, and conducting product research and tests for months, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced this week the approval of the use of higher levels of ethanol in gasoline in late model automobiles.
In 1782, Owen Isaacs took a plow to soil in Sussex County, Del., with high hopes for his new farm. Five generations later, Robbie Isaacs stands on the family farm near Ellendale, Del., with a huge grin spreading across his face as he watches a virtual electric meter spin backwards on his iPhone – he, too, with high hopes.