F. X. Browne, Inc.

Sustainable Environments

February 2011



Happy Valentines Day from F. X. Browne, Inc.!



"I'm in love with a big blue frog,
A big blue frog loves me.
It's not as bad as it appears
He wears glasses and he's six foot three.

Well I'm not worried about our kids,
I know they'll turn out neat.
They'll be great lookin' 'cause they'll have my face,
great swimmers 'cause they'll have his feet!

Well I'm in love with a big blue frog,
A big blue frog loves me.
He's not as bad as he appears,
He's got rhythm and a PhD.

Well I know we can make things work
He's got good fam'ly sense.
His mother was a frog from Philadelphia
His daddy an enchanted prince.

The neighbors are against it and it's clear to me
And it's prob'ly clear to you
They think value on their property will go right down
If the family next door is blue.

Well I'm in love with a big blue frog
A big blue frog loves me
I've got it tattooed on my chest
It says P.H.R.O.G. (It's frog to me!)"


"I'm In Love With A Big Blue Frog"
by Leslie Braunstein
Sung by Peter, Paul and Mary


PA Great American Cleanup Registration Open
You can participate in litter cleanups, illegal dump cleanups, beautification projects, special collections, and educational events.  Cleanups will run between March 1 and May 31.  Free bags, gloves, vests, and cleanup supplies are available.  During Let’s Pick It Up PA days, trash collected can be taken to participating landfills for free disposal.  Since 2004, over 54 million pounds of litter and waste have been removed from Pennsylvania. 

For more information or to register, visit www.gacofpa.org.



“Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love.”
~Albert Einstein

News Clips


DEP’s Newly Designated Critical Water-Planning Areas to Better Protect Resources Threatened by Water-Use Demands: Agency Designates Three Water-Planning Areas in the Ohio, Potomac River Basins
The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP) has designated three critical water-planning areas within Pennsylvania.  They include Laurel Hill Creek and back Creek in the Ohio Basin, and the Marsh Creek and Rock Creek watersheds in the Potomac Basin.  The DEP will work with local advisory committees and regional water resources committees to create critical-area resource plans to address key problems and suggest actions.

PA DEP News Release, January 7, 2011


DCED Releases Land Use, Growth Report for Pennsylvania

The Department of Community and Economic Development issued the 2010 State Land Use and Growth Management Report to show how Pennsylvania has changed over the last five years and what it will look like ten years from now.  It details statewide and regional growth and development patterns for assessing land use trends and future growth.  The report shows that between 1990 and 2007, population increased 4.6 percent and the number of housing units increased by 10.9 percent.  Also, building permits in 2008 and 2009 reached 50-year lows.



York County Planning Commission Announces Integrated Water Resources Plan

The York County (Pennsylvania) Planning Commission is announcing an Integrated Water Resources Plan (IWRP) to guide the restoration and protection of the County’s water resources.  The Plan has been developed on a watershed level and is expected to be a model IWRP for other counties in the state.  The plan will also become the County-wide Stormwater Management Plan (including the requirements of the Pennsylvania Stormwater Act 167).  All York County municipalities will therefore be required to adopt stormwater management ordinances.
To view the plan, visit http://www.ycpc.org/public_comment.html#docs

By John Seitz, Water Resources Coordinator, York County Planning Commission, Watershed Winds Newsletter, Penn State University, January 30, 2011


Delaware Named River of the Year

The public was able to select this year’s winner for the first time.  Over 25% of the votes were for the Delaware, making it the winner.  Over 10,000 votes were tallied between December 6 and January 3, with the Delaware receiving 2,520 votes.  The Delaware River Basin Commission will receive a $10,000 grant to celebrate the river by hosting canoe trips, termed Sojourn, and educational events.  The Delaware River has the largest freshwater port in the world and is an asset to Pennsylvania tourism.

By Gema Maria Duarte, Bucks County Courier Times, February 1, 2011



Game Commission Bluebird Nest Boxes and Tree Seedlings for Sale

The PA Game Commission’s Howard Nursery is selling bluebird nest boxes and tree/shrub seedlings.  Customers can purchase assembled boxes or kits to be assembled at home.  This is the time of year to clean out your existing boxes and to hang new ones.  Bluebirds are native to Pennsylvania and have become less common due to lack of nest sites and competition with other non-native species.  If house sparrows move in, their nests should be removed immediately.  Mount your nest box on a pole 3-5 feet off the ground, preferably facing south.  Having two approximately 20 feet apart may reduce competition from swallows.  You can order by calling 1-888-888-3459 or you can  download an order form by visiting http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/pgc/9106 and clicking on “Howard Nursery” under the "General Store" drop-down menu and then selecting "Wild Homes Order Form” or “2011 Seedling Order Form.”

For more information on bluebirds, visit http://www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt?open=514&objID=623040&mode=2



“Love conquers all. “

Policy Update

Governor Rendell: Latest Growing Greener Grants Making Real, Positive Difference for Communities, Environment:
87 Grants to Improve Water Quality, Restore Lands

Pennsylvania awarded $14.1 million for 87 projects to plant over 100 miles of riparian buffers, improve approximately 30,000 feet of stream banks, and treat hundreds of millions of gallons of acid mine drainage each year.  The projects will also provide education benefits.  The Growing Greener program provided approximately $4.17 million for 21 projects.  To learn more about the projects that received funding, visit www.depweb.state.pa.us/growinggreener and click on “Watershed grants.”

PA DEP News Release, January 6, 2011



Updated Draft National Wetland Plant List

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is soliciting public comments on the updated draft National Wetland Plant List (NWPL).  This list provides wetland plant species and wetland ratings (indicator status) and is used to perform wetland delineations.  The draft NWPL was published in the Federal Register on January 6, 2011 and is open for public comment for 60 days. 

To view the draft NWPL, visit  http://geo.usace.army.mil/wetland_plants/index.html

To view the Federal Register notice, visit http://origin.www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2011-01-06/pdf/2011-3.pdf


EPA To Develop Regulation for Perchlorate and Toxic Chemicals
in Drinking Water

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will be developing a regulation for perchlorate to protect the public and ensure the quality of drinking water.  Perchlorate is naturally occurring and man-made, and is thought to affect the normal function of the thyroid.  The EPA will also establish drinking water standards to address up to 16 chemicals known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that may cause cancer. 

EPA News Release, February 2, 2011



New Jersey – Proposed Amendments to the List of Endangered Wildlife Species and List of Nongame Wildlife Native to New Jersey

New Jersey is proposing changes to their lists of endangered species and nongame native species to reflect status assessments and to correct species taxonomic names.   Comments will be accepted until March 19, 2011.  For more information, visit http://www.nj.gov/dep/rules/notices.html


“Love is an irresistible desire to be irresistibly desired.
~Robert Frost



Marcellus Shale News Articles


DEP Investigating Marcellus Shale Natural Gas Well Control Incident in Tioga County: Talisman Energy Well is on DCNR State Forest Land
PA DEP News Release, January 25, 2011


DEP Issues Report on Short-term Air Quality Impacts from Marcellus Shale Operations in Northeast PA
PA DEP News Release, January 31, 2011


Penn State Profs To Benefit From New Product To Frack Marcellus Gas Wells
PA Environment Digest, January 24, 2011


Oil & Gas Industry Groups Collaborate On Marcellus Shale Education
PA Environment Digest, January 24, 2011


DEP Issues Report on Short-term Air Quality Impacts from Marcellus Shale Operations in Northeast PA: No Emission Levels Found that would constitute a Concern to the Health of Residents
PA DEP News Release, January 31, 2011


DEP Investigating Tioga County Marcellus Well Incident On State Forest Land
PA Environment Digest, January 31, 2011


 Marcellus Shale Resources


University of Pittsburg Map of Marcellus Permits and Wells

Frackwater Disposal Locations Map (2011 Associated Press)


Citizens’ Guide to Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania




“Love is the magician that pulls man out of his own hat.“
~Ben Hecht

Grants and Awards




Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Electronic Grants System

The Department of Conservation and Natural Resources provides eGrants, an electronic grants system that contains all available DCNR grants.  Applications can be submitted online.



Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative

Under the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative (CBWI), eligible landowners can use available technical and financial assistance to address soil erosion, sedimentation, and excess nutrients in streams and waterways, as well as other related natural resource concerns such as air quality, wetlands, wildlife habitat, and forestry. Applications for CBWI will be accepted continuously and evaluated on a monthly basis. To apply, farmers must fill out an application form and contact their local NRCS office. Pennsylvania agricultural producers located within the Chesapeake Bay watershed may be eligible to apply.



Chesapeake Bay Trust Mini Grants

This program provides up to $5,000.00 for projects that focus on the Chesapeake Bay Trust's priorities.  These grants are typically used for educational purposes, small projects, and public awareness initiatives.  Grant applications will be considered until funds are exhausted.


1675 Foundation
This foundation offers support to organizations for arts/culture, education, the environment, health, human services and history.  Priority is given to Philadelphia and Chester
Counties.  Grants ranging from $2,000 to $50,000 are available to organizations that are tax exempt under IRS Code 501(c)(3) or public charities under IRS Code 509(a).  Applications are due March 1 and October 1 of each year.

Bridgestone Americas Trust Fund
This Trust provides charities with funding to support education, the environment/conservation, or children’s programs. 


William Penn Foundation Grants

This foundation provides grants that protect, conserve, and restore water resources that drain to the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers


Maryland DNR Grants and Loans
Visit this site for a comprehensive list of Maryland Department of Natural Resources Grants and Loans.


Maryland DNR Tree-Mendous Program – Trees for Schools Project

The Trees for Schools Project assists teachers and students in Montgomery County Public Schools to plant native trees in their school yards.  Six-foot tall native trees are provided at no charge to the schools with educational fact sheets on how trees benefit the environment.



The Maryland Urban and Community Forest Committee (MUCFC) Grants

The Maryland Urban and Community Forest Committee (MUCFC) is providing maximum grants of $1,500 to projects for tree planting and care.  Grants are reviewed on or about September 15, February 15 and June 15.



PennVEST Loans – Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority

Loans are provided for drinking water, wastewater and stormwater loans, on-lot sewage disposal funds, and Brownfield redevelopment.



Keystone HELP Loan Program to Help Homeowners Install Geothermal Systems

The new Keystone Home Energy Loan Program offers low-interest loans combined with companion loans in anticipation of federal tax credits for utilizing geothermal systems. 




Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission Grants Page

The PHMC offers many grants covering topics such as Historical Markers, Technical Assistance, Certified Local Governments, and more.



NY DEC Grants
Visit this site for a comprehensive list of New York Department of Environmental Conservation Grants and Loans.



USDA Rural Development Water and Waste Disposal (WWD) Loan and Grant Program for Rural Areas

This program provides loans, grants, loan guarantees and technical assistance for water, sanitary, waste and storm drainage facilities in rural areas and towns of 10,000 or less.  Assistance is provided to public entities, non-profit organizations and federally recognized Indian tribes.  Applications are accepted continually. 



USDA Technical Assistance and Training Grants for Rural Areas

These grants are provided for identifying solutions for water and waste disposal problems, assist in preparing applications for water and waste grants, and improving operations and maintenance of existing facilities.  Private non-profit organizations located in rural areas and towns of 10,000 or less are eligible.  Applications accepted October 1 through December 31 every year.



USDA Solid Waste Management Grant Program for Rural Areas

These grants are provided to public bodies, private non-profit organizations and Native American tribes for reducing/eliminating pollution of water resources and improving planning/management of solid waste sties in rural areas.  Applications accepted October 1 through December 31 every year.



PA Resource Enhancement and Protection Program (REAP)

This program provides farmers and business with tax credits in exchange for Best Management Practices (BMPs) on agricultural operations to enhance production and protect natural resources.  Applications will be accepted till fiscal year 2009-2010 appropriations are committed to projects.



Gannett Foundation – Community Action Grants

Funds are granted to provide education/neighborhood improvement, economic development, youth development, community problem-solving, assistance to disadvantaged people, environmental conservation and cultural enrichment.  Applications are due February 16 and August 17 of each year.



H2O PA – High Hazard Unsafe Dam Projects

Grants between $500,000 and $20,000,000 are provided to municipalities, municipal authorities, the Commonwealth and independent agencies for projects that repair, rehabilitate, or remove all or some of a high hazards unsafe dam.


New Jersey DEP Grants and Loans
Visit this site for a comprehensive list of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Grants and Loans.


EPA Wetland Grants Database (WGD)

The WGD is a database provides information on Wetland Program Development Grants such as project descriptions, grant amounts, final reports, geolocational information, case studies, and more.  They also have a “Model Products” section that highlights valuable products.  It is meant to be a learning tool for applicants to learn from what others have done.  To view the database, visit http://iaspub.epa.gov/pls/grts/f?p=101:1 and click on the link that says, "Click here for Public Access (read-only)."


EPA – Community-Based Environmental Grants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is providing grants through the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program to help the public understand and reduce toxic risks from numerous sources.  Applications are due March 22, 2011.



EPA – Environmental Justice Grants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is providing grants to support projects that research, educate, empower and enable communities to address local health and environmental issues.  Non-profit, faith-based and tribal organizations can apply for two categories of projects:  grants up to $25,000 for projects that address a community’s local environmental issues through partnerships or grants up to $50,000 to study science on the impacts of exposure to pollution in communities.  Applications are due March 31, 2011.

To view the application guidance, visit


For more information on the grant program, visit http://www.epa.gov/environmentaljustice/grants/ej-smgrants.html


USDA Encourages Farmers Within Chesapeake Bay Watershed to Signup for Conservation Program

The Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative (CBWI) is providing technical and financial conservation assistance for Pennsylvania agricultural producers located within the Chesapeake Bay watershed.  The focus is on controlling erosion and minimizing excess nutrients and sediments entering the Chesapeake Bay.  Practices include crop residue management, crop nutrient management,

cover crops, buffers, and streamside fencing to keep livestock out of streams and protect fish and wildlife habitat.    Applications will be accepted and evaluated throughout the year on a monthly basis.  The applications will be evaluated, ranked, and prioritized based on the effectiveness to control erosion and reduce sediment and nutrients in the Chesapeake Bay.  First, contact your local NRCS or Conservation District for assistance.  The application and information can be found by visiting www.pa.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/cbwi/index.html.


USDA’s NRCS Grants to Protect Private Forest Land in Pennsylvania

The USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) is providing grants in Adams, Adams, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Cambria, Centre, Huntingdon, Mifflin, Snyder and York Counties to protect Pennsylvania’s forest land through the Healthy Forests Reserve Program (HFRP).  The HFRP grants will be focused on protecting and improving critical habitat for the Indiana bat (Myotis sodalist), a federally listed endangered species.  Applications will be accepted on a continuous basis until funding is exhausted.



USDA – Healthy Forests Reserve Program (HFRP)

The U.S. Dept. of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is providing funds to protect forested land preferred by the Indiana bat, which is a federally listed endangered species.  Funding will go to projects in 12 Pennsylvania counties that protect and improve critical habitat.  Applications will be accepted continuously until the available $1.1 million is exhausted.  For more information, visit http://www.pa.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/HFRP/index.html.


USDA – Pest Management Funding

The USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture is providing grants for the Pest Management Alternatives Program to support the development and implementation of integrated pest management (IPM) practices.  Applications are due March 3, 2011.



Pennsylvania Conservation Programs

To find the best conservation program for you, visit


Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds Convening Grants
Grants up to $2,000 are provided to 501©3 nonprofit organizations to support project collaboration and special needs.  The primary focus areas are located from the Ohio border to the Susquehanna River’s mainstem.  Spring LOIs are due February 25, 2011, and full proposals are due March 22, 2011.  Fall LOIs are due August 26, 2011, and full proposals are due September 30, 2011


New York DEC – Urban Forestry Project Grants

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is providing grants ranging from $2,500 to $62,500 for projects that will enhance urban landscapes with healthy trees and provide environmental, health and economic benefits.  Eligible projects include tree inventories, management plans, tree and shrub planting and maintenance, green infrastructure projects, and impacts from emerald ash borer.  Grants will be awarded depending on municipal population, with a 50/50 match requirement.  Applications are due by February 10, 2011.

Environment DEC, January 2011



NY DEC – Adirondack Park Community Smart Growth Grant Program

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is providing grants to municipalities in the Adirondack Park for planning initiatives that combine environmental protection, economic development and community livability.  Applications are due March 18, 2011.



PA DCNR Community Conservation Partnership Grants

The Pennsylvania Department of Natural Resources (PA DCNR) is providing grants to assist Pennsylvania communities plan, acquire, and develop recreation, park, and trail facilities and conserve open space.  The focus is on projects that create or enhance recreation and conserve infrastructure.  Priorities include recreational facilities that have green principles and involve children, trails, river access projects, and projects identified by regional partnerships.  Applications are due April 20, 2011.



PA DEP – Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program (CELCP)

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) created the CELCP to protect coastal and estuarine areas.  The PA DEP is requesting proposals which will be provided to NOAA on potential CELCP projects within Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie, Delaware Estuary, and some Chesapeake Bay watersheds. Applications are due March 1, 2011.



WREN Community Watershed, Source Water Protection Education Grants

The Water Resources Education Network (WREN) is providing up to $5,000 for community projects that raise awareness and educate Pennsylvania citizens about the environment and protecting water resources.  Applications are due March 25, 2011.



Boat US Foundation Grassroots Grants Program

The Boat US Foundation Grassroots Grants Program is providing up to $4,000 for local projects to educate boaters on boating safety and clean boating topics.  Applications are due April 1, 2011. 




NJDEP Division of Fish and Wildlife's 2011 Native Fish Art and Writing Contest

Students in grades 4 through 7 can participate in this writing contest that encourages learning about New Jersey’s native fish species, their biological requirements and habitats.  Short stories should document the year in a life of a native New Jersey fish.  Drawings will be judged on creativity and originality.  Entries are due March 4, 2011.



PA American Water 2010-2011 Stream of Learning Scholarship Program

College scholarship assistance is provided to students living in PA American Water service Areas.  Ten $2,000 scholarships will be provided to students who are studying fields in the water and wastewater industry.  Applications are due February 11, 2011.



Coldwater Conservation School – NJ DEP Division of Fish and Wildlife & the NJ State Council of Trout Unlimited

The Coldwater Conservation School will be held from June 23-26, 2011 for youth between the ages of 11 and 14.  The School will foster knowledge and appreciation for trout and coldwater habitats.  The School includes food, lodging and equipment for four days and three nights, for a cost of $200.00.  Applications are due April 1, 2011.  For more information, visit



“Love is like war: easy to begin but very hard to stop. “
~H. L. Mencken


Oil National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill Final Report

The Oil National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill released their final report detailing the facts and circumstances that contributed to the BP Deepwater Horizon disaster.  The report also provides options to protect against potential future spills from offshore drilling.  To view the report, visit




“Love is metaphysical gravity. “
~R. Buckminster Fuller

Link Of The Month

Soil Web for the iPhone and Android

This new app can tell you what soil series you are standing in and give you information about the profile description.  This app gives you GPS based, real-time access to USDA-NRCS soil survey data.  You can also view sketches of the soil profiles.




EPA Toxic Release Inventory Program Site

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosts a website that allows citizens to learn about toxic chemicals in their communities.  Just enter your zip code to view a list of toxic chemical disposals and releases into the air, land and water.  You can also learn about waste management and pollution prevention activities.  The site currently has data from 2009. 



“Love is the poetry of the senses.“
~Honore de Balzac

Tools and Publications


The Value of Green Infrastructure: A Guide to Recognizing Its Economic, Social and Environmental Benefits

A new report by the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) and American Rivers provides the economic benefits of green infrastructure, such as best management practices (BMPs).   This guidebook provides the methodology for measuring the value of these improvements, which will allow communities to make educated investment in their infrastructure.   



Interim Report:  Evaluation of Combined Heat and Power Technologies for Wastewater Facilities

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released an interim report to be used as a planning-level tool for wastewater professionals.  The report examines combined heat and power technologies for converting anaerobic digester gas to electrical power and process heat.  It provides process descriptions, performance, and cost data. 

To view a copy of the interim report, visit   http://water.epa.gov/scitech/wastetech/publications.cfm.


New Web-Based Map – Eutrophication and Hypoxia

The World Resource Institute (WRI) and the Virginia Institute of Marine Science (VIMS) identified over 530 “dead zones” and 228 sites with signs of marine eutrophication.  They have crated a web-based database and interactive map showing these areas.  The site also provides links to information, articles, photos and resources. To view the website, visit


“Love means not ever having to say you're sorry.”
~Erich Segal



Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owls are fierce predators that live year-round in the U.S. and do not migrate.  You may see them this time of year nesting in hollow tree cavities, abandoned nests, rocky ledges, caves, barns, and artificial platforms.  They are usually active at night but can also be seen hunting in the daytime. 





Newsletter Editor/Design: 
Lisen Cummings


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F. X. Browne, Inc.  – Environmental Consulting

F. X. Browne, Inc.
 Engineers – Planners – Scientists
34 Years of Excellence & Innovation


Lake and Water Quality Studies
Watershed Management Programs
Bioengineering Projects
Stormwater Management
Watershed Inventories
Water Quality Monitoring
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Water Quality & Watershed Modeling
Open Space Planning
Water & Wastewater Planning and Design
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Corporate Office: Lansdale, PA
Pocono Office: Marshalls Creek, PA
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For more information, call us at (215) 362-3878 or visit: http://www.fxbrowne.com