EPA: Pa. needs to keep Chesapeake clean

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The Environmental Protection Agency says Pennsylvania needs to do more to keep the Chesapeake Bay clean. If the state doesn’t, the EPA could take action and that could cost Pennsylvania.

Keeping the Chesapeake clean starts in the Midstate. According to the executive director of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation’s Pennsylvania office, 50 percent of the water in the bay comes from the Susquehanna River.

“Roughly 19,000 of Pennsylvania’s own rivers and streams are considered impaired just like the Chesapeake Bay, so the things that we do to address the challenges of the Chesapeake Bay are also going to help us address the majority of these issues,” Harry Campbell said.

A new EPA report says Pennsylvania is “substantially off track” when it comes to meeting goals. For example, the commonwealth would need to reduce nitrogen loads from agriculture by 14.6 million pounds and add more than 22,000 acres of forest and grass buffers by the end of 2015.

If Pennsylvania doesn’t comply, the EPA will impose penalties, which could impact the amount of grants and permits the state gets.

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