Pennsylvania DEP Seeks Public Input on Climate Change Plan

January 29, 2009
by TODD KANTORCZYK and BRYAN FRANEY
MGKF Special Alert

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) recently issued a press release inviting public participation to help develop recommendations to reduce or offset greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from various industrial sectors in Pennsylvania. Starting at the end of February, these recommendations will be evaluated by the 21 member Climate Change Advisory Committee (CCAC). The CCAC was created by the Pennsylvania Climate Change Act (Act 70) and is charged with, among other things, advising DEP on the development of a climate change action plan that will be presented to the Governor and the General Assembly in October 2009.

The CCAC is divided into several subcommittees, each of which are actively reviewing, scoring, and ranking a list of GHG reduction options. Established subcommittees include (1) Electricity Generation, Transportation and Distribution; (2) Industry and Waste; (3) Land Use and Transportation; (4) Residential and Commercial; and (5) Agriculture and Forestry. The subcommittees will be evaluating existing and proposed GHG reduction options based on factors including GHG reduction potential, ease of implementation, economic costs and benefits, and other externalities (e.g., public health and environmental impact). The public is invited to provide comments to the subcommittees on the existing options and/or to propose additional actions for consideration. The subcommittees will begin making recommendations to the full CCAC at the next meeting on February 27, 2009. Accordingly, the window for public involvement at this early planning stage is quickly closing. After the recommendations have been scored, ranked and reviewed by the CCAC, DEP anticipates releasing a draft of the climate change action plan for public comment in May or June 2009.

If you wish to provide input to a CCAC subcommittee on GHG reduction options, or if you have any questions about this alert, please contact Todd D. Kantorczyk at tkantorczyk@mgkflaw.com; 484-430-2359 or Bryan P. Franey at bfraney@mgkflaw.com; 484-430-2308.