Governor Carney, Atlantic Governors Issue Joint Letter to U.S. Department of Interior Opposing Offshore Drilling

Bipartisan group includes Governors from Massachusetts to North Carolina; letter sent to U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney joined a bipartisan group of seven Atlantic state governors in issuing a joint letter to U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, opposing the Trump Administration’s plan to allow oil and gas drilling in the Atlantic Ocean. Along with Governor Carney, the Governors of Maryland, Connecticut, Massachusetts, North Carolina, Rhode Island, and Virginia signed the letter. The Governors requested an exemption from new oil and gas drilling off their states and the entire Atlantic Coast, similar to the exemption offered to the State of Florida.

Read the full letter here. The following are excerpts:

“Like Florida, each of our states has unique natural resources and an economy that is reliant on tourism as an essential driver. We support the notion of energy diversity, but the environmental and economic importance of the Atlantic Ocean must be weighed against the potential unintended consequences of these types of activities.”

“Not only are ocean and oceanside resources at risk, but also nearby bays, estuaries, coastal communities, iconic natural areas, and ports. The irreversible impact on ecosystems including marine mammals, fish, sea turtles, and other aquatic life that inhabit the ocean offshore is gravely concerning, as is potential risk and harm to our state’s economies, our natural resources, our military installations, and our residents.”

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Related news:
Governor Carney Releases Statement on Call with U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke
Governor Carney Requests Meeting with Secretary Zinke to Discuss Offshore Drilling Plan
Governor Carney Releases Statement on Trump Administration’s Offshore Drilling Plan
Governor Carney to Trump Administration: No Drilling in the Atlantic


Governor Carney Releases Statement on Call with U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke

WILMINGTON, Del.Governor John Carney spoke by phone on Friday with U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke to express his concerns with the Trump Administration’s plan to allow oil and gas drilling off the coast of Delaware. Governor Carney released the following statement on the call, which came a day after the Governor requested a meeting to discuss the risks associated with new oil and gas drilling in the Atlantic:

“I want to thank Secretary Zinke for taking time to discuss the risks associated with offshore oil and gas drilling. During our conversation, I invited the Secretary to visit Delaware to see firsthand what’s at stake for our state, our beach communities, our economy, and our natural resources. He accepted the invitation, and we look forward to his visit. As we’ve said publicly, drilling off Delaware’s coast would create the risk of a catastrophic spill that would have devastating effects on Delaware’s economy and our environment. Our coastal economy generates $7 billion in economic activity, and supports more than 60,000 jobs in the fishing, tourism, and recreation sectors. The health of Delaware’s economy and environment are directly tied to the health of our coastal areas. Delaware simply cannot accept the risks associated with offshore drilling, and we will continue to express our concerns to the Trump Administration. I was encouraged by my conversation with Secretary Zinke today and look forward to continued dialogue.”

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Delaware to Sue U.S. EPA for Failure to Curb Out-of-State Air Pollution

“Delawareans deserve clean air,” says Governor John Carney 

WILMINGTON, Del. – Delaware announced today its intent to send four Notice of Intent to Sue letters to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding air pollution that comes into Delaware from other states.

The NOI letters, as required by the federal Clean Air Act, inform the EPA that the Delaware Department of Justice – acting on behalf of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control – will file suit against EPA for its failure to require power plants in Pennsylvania and West Virginia to reduce air pollution that significantly affects the quality of the air that Delawareans breathe.

Delaware has previously petitioned for relief to the EPA.

“The Clean Air Act entitles Delaware to relief from upwind pollution and the remedy we are seeking is reasonable and within EPA’s authority and responsibility to grant,” said Governor John Carney. “Delawareans deserve clean air, but our air quality is significantly impacted by pollution traveling downwind from other states. We are simply asking that the EPA require these power plants that pollute Delaware’s air to run their existing pollution control equipment when the plants are in operation.”

Four petitions filed between July and November 2016 by DNREC under Section 126 of the federal Clean Air Act, sought to have EPA require certain power plant units in upwind states to use their air pollution controls to reduce emissions.

The lawsuits will contend that EPA’s approval of the petitions is critical to protecting the health of Delawareans and helping contain the state’s rising healthcare costs from treating respiratory and lung diseases. EPA approval is also important to Delaware’s economy because fewer health-related absences from the workforce results in an increase in productivity.

Ground-level ozone, or smog, has been one of Delaware’s most pervasive and challenging air pollution problems. More than 90 percent of the ozone in Delaware originates from emissions in upwind states.

The filing of the Section 126 petitions, as well as the related Notice of Intent to Sue letters, comes after decades of efforts by DNREC to influence reduction of air pollution transported into Delaware from upwind states.

Though Delaware has made dramatic progress on improving air quality in recent years, emissions from out-of-state power plants continue to prevent Delaware from attaining and maintaining federal health-based air quality standards.

“The Department has pursued – and will continue to pursue – voluntary and collaborative efforts with partner states to ensure upwind power plants meet the same stringent standards which Delaware is required to meet,” said Shawn Garvin, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. “It is now time for EPA to hold upwind sources accountable for ozone emissions that are impacting downwind states.”

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Related news:
Governor Carney, Congressional Delegation Oppose Trump Administration on Clean Air Ruling


Governor Carney Presents Order of the First State Posthumously to Molly Murray

Murray, a longtime environmental reporter, honored for her contributions to Delaware

DOVER, Del. – Governor John Carney on Tuesday presented the Order of the First State posthumously to Molly Murray, a longtime environmental reporter for The News Journal, who passed away in July. The Murray family accepted the Order – an honor bestowed for meritorious service – at Woodburn, the Governor’s official residence.

“Molly had the respect and admiration of generations of Delawareans for her commitment to storytelling and to our state. Like many Delawareans, I learned so much about Delaware and our natural environment by reading Molly’s stories in The News Journal. She was full of enthusiasm for Delaware and our natural world, and shared that enthusiasm with her readers. I was proud to join Molly’s family this week to honor her legacy on behalf of the State of Delaware.”

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Make an ‘ECOnnection’ with DNREC at this year’s Delaware State Fair

Step right up and into DNREC’s newly-climate-controlled fair building for exhibits and environmental displays galore!

HARRINGTON  – With the 2017 Delaware State Fair throwing open the gates today for its fun-filled 10-day run (Thursday, July 20 thru Saturday, July 29), DNREC is again right in the middle of the annual extravaganza – with an array of environmental displays in a newly-climate-controlled State Fair building, and game prizes to be won by kids of all ages for showing their knowledge about the state’s natural resources and environment.

Under the banner with this year’s theme, “DNREC – Your ECOnnection,” DNREC’s displays link visitors to environmentally-friendly programs and ideas. Fairgoers will find information and activities from DNREC’s divisions and programs. Featured this year: DNREC’s refurbished Energy House and a new interactive watershed display demonstrating how water flows and wetlands hold water, plus a 3-D map of stormwater runoff flowing from a suburban yard to Delaware’s wetlands, rivers, streams, bay and the ocean. State Fair visitors young and older also are invited to play DNREC’s scavenger hunt game for discovering eco-friendly facts about Delaware that can be found within the DNREC building, and to pick from a wide range of prizes after their successful “hunt.”

Meanwhile, the DNREC On Stage theater offers a preview of programs from parks, nature centers and other facilities statewide owned and operated by the Department’s Divisions of Fish & Wildlife, Parks & Recreation and Watershed Stewardship. Stop by daily to learn more about what we have to offer – and discover unique new places you and your family can visit!

ECOnnect with DNREC!
At the Fair, adults and kids of all ages can learn more about the science behind the work DNREC does in protecting the environment and Delaware’s natural resources. DNREC’s building includes displays, hands-on activities and educational games. At DNREC on Stage, in the building’s air-conditioned theater, they will also see live animal shows and presentations ranging from maritime history to geology to Delaware’s unique plants and animals. DNREC’s building is located on the fair grounds’ East Rider Road – admission is free and the building is open from 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. daily during the fair. For more information, please visit www.dnrec.delaware.gov.

DNREC on Stage Schedule

Thursday, July 20

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Build Your Own Horseshoe Crab! Kids of all ages are invited to color and create their own model of a horseshoe crab, and learn more about these unique aquatic creatures. (From the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve)

Friday, July 21

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Wildlife in the Parks … and in your Backyard! Learn about the animals that call Lums Pond home – and the critters in your own backyard. Plus, meet some park residents, including a turtle and toad. (From Lums Pond State Park)

Saturday, July 22

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Herbivore, Omnivore, Carnivore! Mammal teeth tell the story of what their owners eat, as illustrated by skulls such as black bear, beaver, deer, and others, along with animal pelts to touch. (From White Clay Creek State Park)
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Live Music with Switchback! Stay awhile and enjoy upbeat rock and pop from the 70s to now with this three-piece local band!

Sunday, July 23

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Bringing the Zoo to You! Meet a few of the residents of Delaware’s very own zoo and learn about where and how they live. (From the Brandywine Zoo)

Monday, July 24 – Senior Day

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Beach Comes to the Fair! Live horseshoe crabs and other beach creatures travel inland to DNREC’s fair building to meet visitors. (From Cape Henlopen State Park)
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Who’s in the Bay Today? Learn about some aquatic species that live in the Delaware Bay and meet some up close! (From the DuPont Nature Center)

Tuesday, July 25 – Kids Day

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Reptiles and Amphibians of Delaware! Meet the often-unnoticed creatures that crawl, hop, swim and slither in our wetlands, woods and waterways. (From Killens Pond State Park)
  • Noon – 3 p.m. Experience Colonial Games and Toys! Costumed interpreters invite visitors to play games and check out toys from Colonial times, on the DNREC building’s porch. (From First State Heritage Park)
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Shipwrecks & Surfman Selfies! Celebrate Delaware Seashore State Park’s 50th anniversary with displays telling the park’s unique story and maritime history activities.

Wednesday, July 26 – Armed Forces Day/Military Appreciation Day

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Creating Power through Natural Resources! See how water creates power by watching a steam engine in action, then create your own pinwheel to harness wind and make energy (From Auburn Heights Preserve)
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Travel Back to the Civil War Days! Interpreters in period costume invite children to play games and try on period costumes, then march in children’s infantry drills. (From Fort Delaware State Park)

Thursday, July 27 – Governors Day/Senior Day

  • 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Join DNREC’s Volunteer Olympics! Get a taste of some of the volunteer opportunities DNREC offers by competing in fast and fun games including beach grass planting and horseshoe crab counting … with prizes.
  • 1 – 2 p.m. DNREC Awards at Mann Tharp Pavilion! DNREC’s Young Environmentalists, Youth Fishing Tournament winners, Wetland Warriors, Volunteers of the Year, Hunting and Fishing Photo Contest winners and Rain Barrel Art Contest winners will be recognized. Also, get a close-up look at one of DNREC’s environmental Emergency Response Team vehicles.
  • 1:40 p.m. Bayshore Forever! Catch the premiere of this new video tour of Delaware’s beautiful Bayshore region.
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Horseshoe Crabs and Skins, Scat and Tracks! Two fascinating programs about Delaware’s resident living fossil – the horseshoe crab – and a close-up look at identifying animals by their tracks, scat and skins. (From the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve)

Friday, July 28

  • Noon – 3 p.m. Beauty and the Beaks! Learn about how different kinds of Delaware birds use their specialized beaks and feathers – and try being a bird. (From Alapocas Run State Park/Wilmington State Parks)
  • 3 – 6 p.m. Primitive Skills: Making Slate Cutting Tools! Learn how our ancient ancestors created cutting tools from slate and try making your own slate tools with help from a park naturalist. (Killens Pond State Park)
  • 4:30 – 9 p.m. How Does Your Deer Measure Up? Learn how Boone & Crockett’s white-tailed deer scoring system works, see some examples of mounted record-holders and get your own evaluated. (On the DNREC Bldg. porch)

Vol. 47, No. 163

Media contact: Joanna Wilson, 302-739-9902 or Joanna.Wilson@delaware.gov

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