Pennsylvania is endowed with a rich mosaic of wetlands, lakes, rivers, and creeks sustained by pure aquifers that provide drinking water and world-class recreational opportunity ranging from sport fishing to paddling. Pennsylvania’s unique landscape and abundant precipitation supports 84,000 miles of rivers and streams, the most of any state besides Alaska.

Sadly, 15,000 miles of creeks and rivers are not drinkable, fishable, or swimmable – the goals of the Clean Water Act of 1972.  A combination of stormwater run-off, municipal wastewater, agricultural run-off, abandoned mine drainage, and industrial discharges degrade streams and present a complex long-term challenge.

We dig deep to understand and address policy barriers and to gather and promote innovative solutions such as green stormwater infrastructure, water quality trading, and inter-municipal cooperative agreements. PEC coordinates watershed-based programs to manage stormwater and to restore watershed function.  Rainfall is treated as a precious natural resource to be slowed and infiltrated to recharge groundwater and support stream base flow through green infrastructure.



The River Town Program

Through the River Town Program, PEC assists towns bordering navigable rivers by using outdoor recreation to help revitalize communities.

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PEC in the News

Residents and Environmental Groups Testify on Act 54 Report

March 27, 2015Observer-Reporter

CALIFORNIA – Residents and environmental groups testifying Friday on a report documenting the impacts of mine subsidence urged a state Department of Environmental Protection advisory board to recommend stronger regulations to protect streams and other water resources. About 18 speakers...

Act 54 4th Five Year Report
Press Releases

Act 54 4th Five Year Report

March 17, 2015

On March 17, PEC President and CEO Davitt Woodwell delivered the following comments to the PA Department of Environmental Protection Citizens Advisory Council on the most recent five year report on the effects of underground coal mining: http://pecpa.org/wp-content/uploads/Act-54-CAC-Testimony.pdf

Patrick Starr Discusses PEC’s work on 900 AM WURD’s “The Green Hour”
Press Releases

Patrick Starr Discusses PEC’s work on 900 AM WURD’s “The Green Hour”

March 11, 2015

Earlier this month, PEC Executive Vice President for Programs Statewide Patrick Starr was a guest on 900 AM WURD’s “The Green Hour” segment. Along with host Jerome Shabazz, Starr outlined PEC’s initiatives in energy and climate, trail work, improving Pennsylvania’s...

Policy Posts

PEC Offers Support For Pair of House Bills

February 2, 2015

Support for House Bill 48 (P.N. 42) On behalf of the Pennsylvania Environmental Council (PEC), I am writing to express our support for Representative Godshall’s House Bill 48 (P.N. 42) which would establish construction and decommissioning standards for private water...

Pennsylvania Environmental Council: Policy Priorities for 2015

January 23, 2015

Tom Wolf has been sworn in as Pennsylvania’s 47th Governor and the focus in Harrisburg can now move past campaigns and ceremony to the difficult task at hand: governing a state with a projected $2.3 billion deficit. Tough questions and...

PEC Statement on Act 162 of 2014

October 23, 2014

Pittsburgh, Pa. – Yesterday Governor Corbett signed House Bill 1565 into law as Act 162 of 2014. Act 162 amends Pennsylvania’s Clean Streams Law to weaken forested riparian buffer requirements in Pennsylvania’s most pristine watersheds. “House Bill 1565 weakens our...