the environmentally sensitive Blue Mountain and the Appalachian Trail
are threatened with large-scale development. A landowner in Ross and Eldred
Townships (identity unrevealed) is proposing a massive resort complex
be built on 1100 acres of undeveloped land on the north side of Blue Mountain
straddling the boundary between the two townships in Monroe County.
came down from the Environmental Hearing Board on September 7, 2006. Judge
Michael Krancer sustained the Blue Mountain Preservation Association’s
appeal of the DEP-issued stormwater discharge permit for Alpine Resorts
Inc. While this does not mean that the racetrack and associated development
on Blue Mountain will not happen, it is a significant setback for Alpine
Rose and there is renewed hope that the project can be stopped.
writing a letter to your Congressman urging him to co-sponsor the Clean
Water Authority Restoration Act (S. 912/H.R. 1356) and thus help in keeping
ALL of our nation's waters healthy and safe.
the excellent work by a coalition of environmental, sportsmen, public
health and religious groups, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental
Protection (PADEP) recently introduced a draft rule that will require
the state's power plants to stop spewing toxic mercury by 90 percent by
2015; it’s called the PA Mercury Rule.
County Parks Department at their Doe Hollow property in Upper Mount Bethel
Township, Northampton County. County plans are to construct a 150-foot
by 150-foot parking lot for motorized vehicles and a ramp into the river
for motorboat access. This proposed work is in the floodplain of the Delaware
River and lies at the mouth of Mill Creek. It is a poor location for these
The Lehigh Valley Group of the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter and the Chapter’s Clean Air Committee explain the necessity for community & state action for air pollution control. Sierra Club and its 28,000 members proclaim the inherent need for change in the way that PA & this nation approach the control of dangerous air pollutants.
Wondering what you can do to help promote clean water? Read this article for a few suggestions
A Shawnee developer is planning to build a 250-room conference center on Depue Island in the Delaware River. The island is in the midst of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, in Delaware River Basin Commission’s (DRBC) “Special Protection Waters” because of the high quality designation of its waters.
Bush Plan Favors Polluters over Public Health. Therefore we will continue to be exposed to air pollutants.
The Borough of Wind Gap has proposed amendments to their Land Use Ordinance. David McGuire, past chair of the Lehigh Valley Group of the Sierra Club, gave testimony on behalf of Sierra Club at Wind Gap's open meeting of September 30, 2002.
Sierra Club support the amendments which would limit development on wet soils, and amendments that would preserve the scenic beauty of the Blue Mountain. We also urge the municipality to give a high priority to preserving and protecting the two important streams that flow through town.
Upper Milford Township has turned down the proposal by Cloud Nine Pet Resort to build a 150-run boarding kennel, dog-training center, and 50-lot parking lot that would create about 1 acre of concrete and blacktop in an area prone to run off problems.
Governor Rendell vetoed HB 1222, which was amended late in the process by a Senate committee to include provisions unrelated to the main body of the bill. Those amended provisions would punish municipal governments for regulating industrial-scale animal factory farms.
Both Lehigh and Northampton County voters have approved bond issues for preserving open space. Although each county has a different perspective on their ordinances, each lump preservation of open space, farmland, and recreation areas into their bonds. We are closely following the processes for allocating these funds.
On July 22, 2003 a Monroe County judge reversed the conditional preliminary approval that township supervisors granted last November to the plans. The court's opinion could be considered the first to interpret and apply the Appalachian Trail Act which requires municipalities "to preserve the natural, scenic, historic and aesthetic values of the trail and to conserve and maintain it as a public natural resource." Judge Ronald Vican's opinion orders the supervisors to evaluate more thoroughly three factors he says were addressed inadequately when the officials approved the racetrack project.
On May 21, 2003, the Lehigh Valley Group sent a letter to Governor Rendell asking for his help in stopping the Alpine Rose Resort.
On March 26, 2003 it was revealed the Alpine Rose Resort officials used a flawed method to calculate noise levels with the proposed resort. This method that underestimates how dramatically the noise level will increase. This provides new ammunition for resort opponents, and may cause the township officials to rethink their authorization of the project. The problem with the study was that the measured and predicted noise levels did not employ the same scale, so it was like comparing apples to oranges.
On November 6, 2002, a developer operating as Alpine Rose Resorts won approval from Eldred Township supervisors to build a 360+ acre high-end sports car driving track along the north side of the Blue Mountain in Monroe County along the Northampton County border.
This resort, which would include a 3.2 mile race track, time share villas, restaurants, go-cart tracks, an area for commercial hotels, auto specialty shops, and a 4 acre concourse for outdoor events, expects to bring 150,000 - 200,000 people a year to an area that was recently named one of Pennsylvania's "Important Bird Areas."
The Blue Mountain Preservation Association and the Appalachian Trail Conference have teamed up to file a Monroe County Court challenge to Eldred Township supervisors' conditional approval of the Resort. The appeals argue that the township's land use ordinances violate the 1978 Pennsylvania Appalachian Trail Act.
here for more information.
There is no requirement in the State of Pennsylvania that managers of public lands consider the environmental impact of their decisions on the recreation, fisheries, wildlife, air and water quality of these lands, as we have been finding out lately.
Now, State Rep. Chuck McIllhinney has introduced legislation (HB 2799) that would require land managers to assess the environmental impacts of actions and to involve the public fully in those decisions. We, and Pennsylvania, need your help to ensure that the legislation gains the support it needs to become law.
The Lehigh County Parks and Recreation Department has proposed "thinning" the old growth trees in Jordan Parkway in order to deal with ecological problems occurring in the forest. Rather than thinning the forest, we in the Sierra Club believe that this forest needs a greater degree of protection than is currently provided. We request that the Department consider further restrictions on the types of recreational activities that will continue to compact soil and damage wildflowers, shrubs and saplings.
Now you can receive e-mail alerts from the Lehigh Valley Group. These will be about important environmental events in the Lehigh Valley, outings, programs, news from the group, and actions you can take to support the local environment.
a member of the Lehigh Valley e-mail alert list, click on mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org?body=SUBSCRIBE