When something important is happening that will affect our rivers - and we need your help - we will let you know here. We are a growing organization and we can work with our members to let elected officials and other decision-makers know that we care about the West and Rhode Rivers.
(To contact our state representatives, click here.)
The Maryland General Assembly is in session! West/Rhode Riverkeeper is a member of the Citizens Campaign for the Environment (CCE). Each year, CCE votes on its priority bills in the state legislature (bill numbers are listed in parentheses). This year, there are four priorities:
The Bay, a national treasure and regional economic resource, suffers from severely degraded water quality. This campaign is designed build on last session's successes and further Maryland's waterways and the Chesapeake Bay itself down the path of steady improvements in water quality and quality of life for those who live, recreate, and work on and near the Chesapeake. The suite of policies we are pursuing will build on last session's successes by improving the stormwater pollution regulation, ensuring that funding sources are protected and secured, that beneficial regulations on septic systems and manure spreading are enacted, and significantly reduce the number of disposable bags used and entering the waste and litter stream.
Maryland Offshore Wind Energy Act of 2013.
Offshore wind is one of Maryland's greatest untapped energy resources. Capturing even a fraction of this potential will yield dramatic benefits for our nation's energy security and the environment. Developing Maryland's offshore wind resources could lead to the creation of more than 15,000 jobs over the next 20 years and would enable us to meet our clean energy requirement of 20% renewable energy by 2022. In utilizing the resource, we will reduce hazardous heat-trapping pollution, and greater energy independence will strengthen our national security. We will be working to pass legislation to incentivize offshore wind power and create good local jobs.
Marcellus Shale - Hydraulic Fracturing
Fracking is a dangerous drilling method used to extract natural gas from shale rock. Around the country, natural gas fracking has attracted widespread attention as surrounding communities have been subjected to drinking and ground water contamination, climate pollution, and land scarring. In Ohio, Arkansas, and Oklahoma, the injection of wastewater from the fracking process caused tremors and earthquakes. Due to the threat of these consequences in Maryland, it is imperative that the General Assembly place a moratorium on fracking until careful, independent analyses are completed to determine whether the risky drilling practice makes sense for Maryland.
In addition to those four CCE priorities, West/Rhode Riverkeeper is supporting other legislation that will help our Rivers. We will post more bills as they become available!
You can look up information about any state legislation on the MLIS website: http://mgaleg.maryland.gov/
(To contact our county council representative, click here.)
The County Council often considers legislation which affects our environment. See the pending legislation on the Council website: http://www.aacounty.org/CountyCouncil/pendingLegis.cfm