Posts Tagged ‘United States Forest Service’

On June 17-19 Allegheny Defense Project will meet near the confluence of Salmon Creek and The Branch (a tributary of Salmon Creek) for our Spring Outing. Follow this link to a map of the camp location and/or see illustrations below. The easiest path to the site is from Route 666 crossing the bridge over Salmon Creek at Kelletville near Cougar Bobs. We will make camp Friday evening (June 17), starting at 5pm. The camp will be beside the Branch where the North Country Scenic Trail crosses FR 127 (AKA the Branch Ridge Road) and meets The Branch. Saturday morning we will discuss issues and strategy in a Forest Watch update. Saturday afternoon we will hike and backpack as far as we like on the North Country Trail and spend Saturday night on the trail. Please bring all of your own gear and food (including device to filter water). Our base camp Friday night (June 17) will be a primitive camp with no facilities. Saturday night (June 18) will be backpacking hiking and camping.

If you do not have gear but would like to join us for the base camp or backpack camp we may be able to outfit you with some items. Please contact us below if you need gear or have questions.

Please also feel free to join us for socializing and Forest Watch update Friday evening or Saturday morning even if you do not intend to camp.

Contact: Office: 814-454-7523 Cell: 814-520-4639 (We will be unable to communicate by phone after noon Thursday June 16).

Spring Outing (right click for larger image)

Spring Outing Location

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The Allegheny Defense Project (ADP) is holding its 17th Annual Fall Gathering at Loleta in the Allegheny National Forest (ANF) September 17-19th. Please join us for camping, hiking, rappelling, foraging, music, food and fun! Please RSVP so we can plan for food (we will asking for donations for each meal, ca $15 for the weekend) Meals are vegan and vegetarian, but feel free to bring your own veg or non-veg supplies to supplement.

We will be setting up camp on Friday September 17th in a group camp area at the Loleta Camping Facility in the ANF (see map here, and image below, Download Loleta Map). The camping area is on the north/east side of Loleta Road (AKA State Route 3002)–that is the left side of the road if you are heading south; the right side of the road if you are heading north. We will be in the Millstone Group Camp area.

“What is the “Fall Gathering”?

It’s a family oriented event providing time for Allegheny Defense Project members, supporters and “environmentally conscious” individuals to come together in the fall to camp, hike, eat and learn about issues impacting the Allegheny National Forest, Pennsylvania’s only national forest.

The Allegheny Defense Project is an organization founded on principles of non-violence. We request that participants do not bring any illegal substances. Your well-behaved pets are always welcome.

Friday the 17th: Set-up camp in the afternoon. 6PM Dinner; 7PM Author of Hartwell Road, Reg Darling will lead a discussion on memoir/journal writing.
Saturday the 18th: 9AM Forest Watch issues tour; 3PM ADP presentation on the State of the Forest; 6PM dinner; 7PM Music by Stan Barton and Matt Homan; 9:30PM night hike led by John Stoneman of Allegheny Outdoor Adventures.

Sunday the 19th: explore Buzzard Swamp (biking tour), local geocaches, trails, etc.

Please bring feel free to bring bikes, GPS (for geocaching and hiking), canoes and kayaks, fishing equipment, and musical instruments. There will always be coffee, food, and a fire at the camp so join us anytime during the weekend.

The schedule is flexible and you can come out and spend whatever time you have whether its for one event, a meal, any day, the whole weekend, or just stop by for the campfire in the evening. If you can provide a dish, or can help with kitchen duties please let us know 🙂 Please also bring all of your own camping equipment including cup, plate, and spoon. If you would like to join us, but do not have equipment, we may be able to hook you up with some…let us know!

To RSVP and for more information contact:

Cathy Pedler

Mary Belitskus

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A Report on the NCT Allegheny 100 Challenge and Small Whorled Pogonia Survey in the Tionesta Scenic and Research Natural Areas

The adventure started June 18 at the North Country Trail Head on RT 346 near the New York border. John Stoneman, of Allegheny Outdoor Adventures, and I arrived just as the other hikers were starting out. Boots hit the trail at 6PM sharp. The event was the North Country National Trail ANF Chapter’s Allegheny 100 Challenge. Hikers were traveling between 25 and 100 miles on the North Country Trail in the Allegheny National Forest between June 18 and June 20.

John, more competitive and in shape than I, would have burned the trail up with the rest of the group, but he was kind enough to take a more leisurely pace with me. I had only committed to 25 miles rather than pushing for 100. We had parked a car at Sugar Bay planning to at least hike the entire Tracy Ridge section that evening, but some of the other hikers were going to try to make it all the way to Chappel Bay that evening (a full 25 miles). Our plan was to hike at night, but to be off the trail and back to Tracy Ridge for camping by 10 or 11PM.

The sunset hike was beautiful. The water reflected and magnified the evening light, fortunately long into the twilight. The trail was relatively easy except for a few inclines that caused my heart and lungs to jump out of my body and smack me around for using them without sufficient warning.

We eventually caught up with some of the hikers who were resting at one of the trail’s many springs and streamlets that trickle down to the Allegheny River Reservoir. We passed the hikers for a short time but regrouped with them after dark, posing for a picture by an abandoned artifact from previous episodes of human stupidity in the Allegheny (see picture below). Oil and gas debris became a theme on day two of my hike in the Tionesta Scenic and Research Natural Areas, where we were looking for Pogonias, but kept stumbling onto pipes, and tanks.

As it does, the sun finally left us and night came in full. There were moonbeams dappling the path. Unfortunately, John and I—who had again fallen away from the hiking group at the insistence of my internal organs—had turned out our lights to hike by, and admire, the moonlight. We missed our turnoff to Sugar Bay and proceeded unwittingly toward the Hopewell Camping area. John took a nice spill on the way down to Hopewell, but caught himself with his forehead on a large, flat log. He shook it off pretty well. After we discovered our mistake at Hopewell and turned around to hike back to our missed turn (adding another few miles to our evening adventure), I took a tumble going uphill, which is a lot harder to do, but hurts less than the way John did it. Eventually, we made it out to RT 321, to the car, and to Tracy Ridge for a dinner of cheese curds and Pringles. It was sometime after 1PM. We were bruised, and beat. John looked forward to his hot tub. I looked forward to 10 more miles the next day…Read More

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Documents from a Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) request by the Allegheny Defense Project (ADP) show that there are currently plans for five Marcellus Shale gas wells on the public lands of the Allegheny National Forest (ANF).

Three of the wells are planned by East Resources (Royal Dutch Shell) including,

1) one well in the Glad Run watershed,

2) a well on FR 444 in the Chaffee Run watershed (headwaters of the South Branch Of Tionesta Creek), and

3) one well in the Log Run watershed (East Branch of Millstone Creek).

Pennsylvania General Energy is planning

4) one well on Coalbed Run.

Hanley & Bird is planning

5) one well on Pine Run (headwaters of Big Mill Creek).

In addition to these five wells there are nine wells in the footprint of the ANF on private in-holdings or on State Gamelands (i.e., No. 28, and No. 24). There are a total of 92 Marcellus Shale gas wells in the four county area of the ANF, including Warren, Forest, McKean, and Elk counties. The image on the right links to a map that plots the Marcellus Shale gas well drilling sites with well and company data…Read More

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On May 4, 2010, four days after a Howard Drilling oil spill was reported in the Warren Times Observer, “Oil Spill In ANF Contained By Dike,” an Allegheny Defense Project team hiked several miles up gated Forest Service Road FR 261 to investigate the spill.  Upon arriving at a Howard Drilling tank battery, ADP discovered a spill that had, in fact, breached the dike and flowed several hundred feet downhill toward Mud Lick Run (see photo on right, Mud lick run photo below).

At the site, the scent of oil permeated the air and some of the soil was still blackened with oily residue.  The ADP team investigating the Howard Drilling spill saw evidence that workers had cleared soil from a large area within the dike, and from a wide path that ran over the dike and downhill toward Mud Lick Run. The affected area had been covered with straw, gravel, and seed. According to the April 30 Warren Times Observer article, the spill on FR 261 had been contained within the tank battery’s dike. According to the article, the spill was discovered by ANF officials and reported to the DEP, who in turn alerted Howard Drilling, who subsequently told the PA State Police that someone else was responsible for the spilled oil. The spill that the Allegheny Defense Project discovered on FR 261 on May 4, 2010, was very obviously not contained by a tank battery dike (see more photos below). See Also alleghenydefense.org.

Above: Apparent spill path (covered with straw) running downhill from tank battery

Above: Top of dike with evidence of spill on both the inside and outside dike wall

Above: Note path of cleared soil with straw on wall and top of dike

Above: Evidence of spill inside dike, soil cleared and covered with straw

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ADP Investigates Snyder Brothers 2008 Oil Spill Sites; Finds Valves Still Unlocked and Evidence of More Spills

A team of Allegheny Defense Project (ADP) volunteers discovered that all is not well on FR 267 and FR 269, the sites of a major oil spill two years ago. At these sites, disgruntled former employees of Snyder Brothers, Inc. let loose more than 40,000 gallons of oil that fouled Indian Run, Chappel Fork Creek, and the Allegheny River Reservoir. On May 22, 2010 ADP staff, board, and volunteers visited the sites involved in the spill, observed that the there have been subsequent dike breeches, and that the valves on the same tank batteries that were tampered with in 2008 are still unlocked two years later. The valves pictured here are located at the back of the tanks in the Snyder Brother development on FR 269. Workers use these valves to drain brine water, but if left unattended, they will also drain oil from the tanks. The photo on the left shows the unlocked valve. The photo on the right shows the brine water tank, which given its horizontal placement, will only hold about half its total volume before water and oil spill out of the hole where the liquid is supposed to enter (which apparently has happened at the Snyder Brothers site pictured here). The tank battery dikes are filled with gravel. For oil to pool as it is in the photos here the gravel-filled tank battery dikes must be saturated with oil.

On FR 267 at the tank battery, and gravel pit near Hemlock Run, ADP noted a recent spill or seepage from what appeared to be a newly expanded or repaired dike…Read More

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Live appearance by Sundance Film Festival-winning director Josh Fox

WARREN, Pa., (May 14, 2010) — The Boonies International, an Independent Film Festival at Warren, PA announces the presentation of the Josh Fox film Gasland at the Struthers Library Theatre in Warren, PA on Sunday, June 6, 2010 at 1:30 PM (doors open 1:00 PM); and in Bradford, PA at the University of Pittsburgh at 6:30 PM (doors open at 6:00PM). Warren and Bradford are two of 20 stops on the filmmakers’ grassroots tour with his film through Pennsylvania and New York, in a run-up to its June 21st HBO premiere. The event is part of an ongoing series of independent films being screened in Warren as a means of introducing the community to the world of independent film.

The Struthers Library Theater (302 West 3rd Avenue, Warren, PA )
will host the first screening on June 6th—a Sunday matinee. Theatre doors will open at 1:00 PM. Local musician Stan Barton will perform on stage prior to the screening of the film, which will begin promptly at 1:30 PM. A panel discussion and Q& A with Fox; Ben Price, Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, and the Pennsylvania Community Rights Network Projects Director; and Paul Burroughs, Environmental Attorney

The Environmental Studies Club at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford (300 Campus Drive, Bradford, PA) will host the evening show on June 6th with doors opening at 6:00 PM. There will be a short introductory performance for the film, which begins showing at 6:30 PM. The Q&A panel described above will also follow the evening show.

The hosting coalition includes the Allegheny Defense Project, Bradford Earth Day, the Lake Erie Group of the Sierra Club Public Lands Action Team, the Niagara Group of the Sierra Club, the Environmental Studies Club at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, the Seneca Chapter of Trout Unlimited, Friends of Rimrock, Good People Gather, Presque Isle Audubon Society, Tionesta Valley Snowmobile Club, Allegheny Outdoor Adventures, Save Our Streams, The Pennsylvania
Steelhead Association, Moshannon Group of the Sierra Club, Earth Action and other community groups. The 20-city screening tour is co-organized by Delaware Riverkeeper Network, Catskill Mountainkeeper and Earthjustice. Read More


Jeff Clark, The Boonies Executive Director
814.723.1952, jeffclark1952@verizon.net

Cathy Pedler, Allegheny Defense Project, Forest Watch Coordinator
Lake Erie Group of the Sierra Club Public Lands Action Team
814-454-7523, cpedler@alleghenydefense.org

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By Forest Watch Staff

Take Action on Pine Bear!

The Pine Bear Project, located on 10,055 acres in the southeastern part of the Allegheny National Forest (ANF), proposes approximately 3,000 acres of even-aged logging—1,324 acres of which is clearcuts and 1,781 acres staged clearcuts (see location). Additionally, the project calls for 2,294 acres of other “treatments,” 1,483 acres of herbiciding, 105 acres of burning every 3 to 5 years, over 500 acres of fencing, 12 acres of stone pit expansion, and 2.5 miles of new road.

Within the Pine Bear project boundary are high quality aquatic habitats, which will be adversely affected by the actions proposed in the Pine Bear project (e.g., by clearcutting, and herbiciding). Bear Creek is classified as a High Quality, Cold Water Fishery, which must be afforded special protection. Additionally, the Pennsylvania Fish And Boat Commission recognizes Bear Creek as well as the streams and creeks listed below as Naturally Reproducing Trout Streams.

Stream Tributary to
Bear Creek Clarion River
Pigeon Run Bear Creek
Maple Run Bear Creek
Pine Run Bear Creek
Twin Lick Run Bear Creek
Red Lick Run Bear Creek

These important aquatic habitats must be protected. The proposed action in the Pine Bear project will damage these streams and creeks with increased runoff and siltation, stream warming from canopy openings, and pollution from herbicide applications. The USFS must conduct an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to determine the impact of the project on these important aquatic habitats and on the species that inhabit them.

The northwest area of the Pine Bear Project includes the Sackett oil field seen in the sattelite image below. This area has been heavily fragmented and impacted by oil and gas drilling.

Also note previous clear-cut activities in image above. Some of these resulted from the East Side and Mortality I projects. Now the U.S. Forest Service intends to layer additional impacts on an area already hit hard by industrialization and extraction.

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Take Action on Pine Bear!

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April 30, 2010. Warren Times Observer

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See Map of Spill Location

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On April 15, 2010, ADP Board President Bill Belitskus and I hiked through the Glad Run Watershed, a tributary of the South Branch of Kinzua Creek near Kane, PA. We are monitoring this area because soon this watershed will be subjected to clear-cutting (North Drive In Timber Sale), shallow well drilling (TEIS Area 8), and deep gas well drilling as East Resources moves forward with its plans to drill a Marcellus Shale Gas well in the headwaters of  the South Branch of Kinzua Creek.

We discovered the Marcellus Shale gas well location through a file review  at the Meadville Offices of  the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). According to the coordinates provided on the well permit, the well will be drilled on FR 186A, a short road leading to a stone pit on the south side of FR 186. The western end of FR 186 intersects Route 6 near the the drive -in theater east of Kane, and the eastern end of FR 186 meets FR 150, not far from Route 219 north of Lantz Corners. The well permit shows that East Resources will use hydraulic fracturing and drill at least one horizontal bore  thousands of feet from the well-head south toward Route 6…read more.

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