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Pennsylvania Lake Erie Phosphorus Reduction Domestic Action Plan

[47 Pa.B. 6127]
[Saturday, September 30, 2017]

 The Department of Environmental Protection (Department) finalized the Pennsylvania Lake Erie Phosphorus Reduction Domestic Action Plan (DAP) to assist in the elimination of nutrient pollution in Lake Erie.

 The Commonwealth is one of eight state governments with coastline and contributing tributaries to the Great Lakes, and one of five states that share jurisdictional responsibilities for water quality in the Lake Erie Basin. In 1972, the United States and Canada signed the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (GLWQA) to provide a framework for the restoration, protection and management of the Great Lakes water resources shared between the countries. The states in the United States and Canadian provinces fully participate in this process to assure cooperative restoration success.

 The GLWQA was amended and reaffirmed in 2012 to include a process to develop new phosphorus reduction targets for Lake Erie, which was adopted formally by the parties in February 2016 to address over-nutrification problems identified within Lake Erie and develop United States and Canadian DAPs for phosphorus reductions in each country. The United States Environmental Protection Agency is developing the United States DAP that will coordinate and integrate each United States state-written DAP. The United States DAP also will include those actions to be completed by each United States Federal agency with programs that affect Lake Erie water quality. The United States and Canada are bound by the GLWQA to complete these plans by February 2018, and the DAPs will be included as components of the Lake Erie Lakewide Action and Management Plan to be completed by the end of 2018.

 The Department announced a 30-day public comment period at 47 Pa.B. 3045 (May 27, 2017) which allowed for submittal of comments on the draft DAP from May 27, 2017, to June 26, 2017, through the Department's eComment system, by e-mail and mail. A public webinar was conducted on June 15, 2017, to review the draft DAP. The Department received one formal comment on the DAP pertaining to Section 5, ''Measuring Progress and Achieving Consensus,'' and Section 5.1 was revised accordingly to address the comment. The formal Comment and Response Document was added as Appendix 1. Additionally, minor revisions were completed to Sections 3.4, 3.4.1, 3.4.2, 3.5, 3.6, 4.2, 4.2.1, 5 and 5.3 to provide updated information and more detailed program descriptions.

 The final DAP is available on the Department's web site at www.dep.pa.gov (select ''Businesses,'' then ''Water,'' then ''Compacts and Commissions,'' then ''Great Lakes Program''). Questions regarding the final DAP should be directed to Timothy Bruno at (814) 835-1477 or tibruno@pa.gov.

PATRICK McDONNELL, 
Secretary

[Pa.B. Doc. No. 17-1626. Filed for public inspection September 29, 2017, 9:00 a.m.]



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