Penn. municipalities use innovative technologies to improve water quality

Governor Edward G. Rendell praised the efforts of four municipalities -- including three in the Chesapeake Bay watershed -- that are putting well established, but seldom used, innovative technologies to work to improve water quality for residents. The Governor said the four municipalities, in Centre, Dauphin, Mercer and Northumberland counties, will share $1 million through the Department of Environmental Protection's Growing Greener Innovative Technology Grant program...

• Municipalities in Centre, Dauphin, Mercer, Northumberland counties share $1 million in Growing Greener Innovative Technology grants

HARRISBURG, PA, April 22, 2008 -- Governor Edward G. Rendell praised the efforts of four municipalities -- including three in the Chesapeake Bay watershed -- that are putting well established, but seldom used, innovative technologies to work to improve water quality for residents.

The Governor said the four municipalities, in Centre, Dauphin, Mercer and Northumberland counties, will share $1 million announced today through the Department of Environmental Protection's Growing Greener Innovative Technology Grant program.

"These four municipalities are to be commended for thinking outside of the box on how to improve the water quality in their communities," said Governor Rendell. "Rather than falling back on the same old approach, these innovators looked at the challenges facing their systems and wondered what could be done differently and to the advantage of those who depend on their services.

"The result was four improved wastewater treatment systems that were upgraded in a way that offers additional value to the community; one will better protect against bacteria, another will remove a greater amount of nutrients from the water, and two will produce their own electricity to help power operations.

"Supporting these projects is important to protecting the public health and ensuring the economic vitality of our communities," said the Governor. "Without a dependable supply of drinking water, or reliable wastewater treatment services, a community's quality of life and ability to attract new economic development will suffer. Without these essential services, a community cannot grow."

The grants announced today included $167,065 to Millheim Borough, Centre County; $82,935 to Wiconisco Township, Dauphin County; and $375,000 apiece to the Hermitage Municipal Authority, Mercer County, and the Milton Regional Sewer Authority, Northumberland County.

The innovative technology grants are funded through the state's Growing Greener program, and offer communities, municipalities and public school districts up to $500,000 to make physical improvements to existing facilities, as well as sanitary and combined sewer collection/conveyance systems.

Preference was given to wastewater treatment projects that use new or innovative technology to reduce energy consumption compared to conventional processes. New or innovative technology refers to an approach that is commercially available but is not yet used widely in Pennsylvania, and should provide one or more significant advantages over conventional technology.

For more information on the program, visit www.depweb.state.pa.us, keyword: Growing Greener Innovative Technology.

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