News & Blog

The NCAEP uses this site to keep our members and the public informed on the latest news and events concerning the environment and the environmental profession in North Carolina. Use the links below to access and comment on the latest news and postings.

  • 16 Jun 2015 6:45 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    Passed by the Senate (3rd reading) on 15 June 2015

    RIPARIAN BUFFER REFORM

    SECTION 13.(a)  Until the convening of the 2016 Regular Session of the 2015 General Assembly, the Environmental Management Commission and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources shall implement 15A NCAC 02B .0233 (Neuse River Basin: Nutrient Sensitive Waters Management Strategy: Protection and Maintenance of Existing Riparian Buffers) as follows:

    (1)        Zone 1, as described in NCAC 02B .0233(4)(a) and Zone 2, as described in NCAC 02B .0233(4)(b) shall not be enforced.

    (2)        The riparian buffer shall consist of the 30‑foot riparian area that formerly constituted Zone 1.

    (3)        The activities and uses for the riparian buffer are those that could have occured in Zone 2.

    http://www.ncleg.net/Sessions/2015/Bills/House/HTML/H44v3.html

  • 07 May 2015 1:39 PM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    This site provides interactive access to maps and data representing Natural Heritage resources and other conservation values in North Carolina.

    https://ncnhde.natureserve.org/

    Training:

    https://ncnhde.natureserve.org/content/help

    Raleigh: 27 May; 23 June; 20 July; 6 August

    Asheville: 3 June

  • 04 May 2015 9:32 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    HOUSE BILL 795

    AN ACT to reform and amend the State environmental policy act.

    http://www.ncleg.net/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2015&BillID=h795&submitButton=Go

    f.          Any irreversible and irretrievable environmental changes which would be involved in the proposed action should it be implemented.

                For purposes of this subdivision, a direct environmental impact does not include impacts that are speculative, secondary, or cumulative with other previous actions or that occur outside of the State.

    (7a)      "Significant expenditure of public moneys" means expenditures of public funds greater than ten million dollars ($10,000,000) for a single project or action or related group of projects or actions. For purposes of this subdivision, contributions of funds or in‑kind contributions by municipalities, counties, regional or special‑purpose government agencies, and other similar entities created by an act of the General Assembly and in‑kind contributions by a non‑State entity shall not be considered an expenditure of public funds for purposes of calculating whether such an expenditure is significant

    HOUSE BILL 760

    AN ACT to provide further regulatory relief to the citizens of north carolina by providing for VARIOUS administrative reforms, by eliminating certain unnecessary or outdated statutes and regulations and MODERNIZING or simplifying cumbersome or outdated regulations, and by making various other statutory changes.

    http://www.ncleg.net/Sessions/2015/Bills/House/HTML/H760v2.html

    PART III. ENVIRONMENTAL AND NATURAL RESOURCE REGULATION 

    AMEND ISOLATED WETLANDS LAW

    (2)        Mitigation requirements for impacts to isolated wetlands shall only apply to the amount of impact that exceeds the thresholds set out in subdivision (1) of this section. The mitigation ratio for impacts of greater than one acre exceeding the thresholds for the entire project under 15A NCAC 02H .1305(g)(6) shall be 1:1 and may be located on the same parcel.

    (3)        For purposes of Section 54(b) of this section, "isolated wetlands" means a Basin Wetland or Bog as described in the North Carolina Wetland Assessment User Manual prepared by the North Carolina Wetland Functional Assessment Team, version 4.1 October, 2010, that are not jurisdictional wetlands under the federal Clean Water Act. An "isolated wetland" does not include an isolated man‑made ditch or pond constructed for stormwater management purposes or any other man‑made isolated pond.

    (4)        Impacts to isolated wetlands shall not be combined with the project impacts to 404 jurisdictional wetlands or streams for the purpose of determining when impact thresholds that trigger a mitigation requirement are met.

    AMEND STORMWATER MANAGEMENT LAW

    (2)        Vegetative buffers adjacent to intermittent streams shall be measured from the center of the stream bed.

    RIPARIAN BUFFER REFORM

    (b1)      Exceeding Minimum State Requirements. – The Commission may approve a delegation application proposing a riparian buffer width that exceeds that required by the State for the type of surface body of water and the river basin or basins in which the unit of local government is located only in accordance with the procedures of this section:

    (1)        Units of local government may request exceedances in riparian buffer widths from the Commission when submitting an application under subsection (b) of this section. Exceedances in buffer width enforced by units of local government under an existing local ordinance may not be enforced after February 1, 2016, unless the unit of local government has either received approval for an exceedance under the procedures set forth in this subsection or has an application for an exceedance pending with the Commission. Under no circumstances shall any existing local ordinance be enforced after June 1, 2016, unless the Commission has approved the exceedance. For purposes of this subdivision, an "existing local ordinance" is a local ordinance approved prior to August 1, 2015, that includes an exceedance in riparian buffer width from that required by the State.

    (2)        The Commission may consider a request for an exceedance in riparian buffer width only if the request is accompanied by a scientific study prepared by or on behalf of the unit of local government that provides a justification for the exceedance based on the topography, soils, hydrology, and environmental impacts within the jurisdiction of the unit of local government. The Commission may also require that the study include any other information it finds necessary to evaluate the request for the exceedance.

    (3)        The Commission shall grant the request for an exceedance only if it finds that the need for the exceedance in riparian buffer width is established by the scientific evidence presented by the unit of local government requesting the exceedance in order to meet the nutrient reduction goal set by the Commission for the basin subject to the riparian buffer rule.

    (4)        For purposes of this subsection, "existing local ordinance" shall include a zoning district, subdivision or development regulation; comprehensive plan; policy; resolution; or any other act carrying the effect of law

    (e3)      Limitation on Local Government Riparian Area Restrictions. – Units of local government may impose restrictions upon the use of riparian areas as defined in 15A NCAC 02B .0202 only within river basins where riparian buffers are required by the State.

    HOUSE BILL 639

    AN ACT to establish the clinical exercise physiologist licensing act.

    http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2011&BillID=H639

    HOUSE BILL 141

    AN ACT to authorize cities to undertake activities within their stormwater management programs to implement flood reduction techniques that result in improvements to private property.

    http://www.ncleg.net/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2015&BillID=h141

    HOUSE BILL 186

    AN ACT to require the Environmental ReVIEW Commission to conduct a study of water resources availability in the Cape Fear River Basin.

    http://www.ncleg.net/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2015&BillID=H186

    http://www.smithenvironment.com/

  • 24 Apr 2015 7:10 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    RALEIGH

    With little discussion and no study of the potential consequences, state legislators are looking to gut an environmental protection law that has been on the books since 1971.

    The law is meant to ensure that when state or local government agencies spend tax dollars on major projects, there is public input, all the possible impacts are considered and alternatives are evaluated. The bill’s sponsors say the State Environmental Policy Act is outdated and that any benefits are outweighed by unnecessary costs for taxpayers.

    By Craig Jarvis

    cjarvis@newsobserver.com

    04/23/2015 12:47 PM

    04/23/2015 9:28 PM

    http://www.newsobserver.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article19311273.html

    http://ncleg.net/gascripts/BillLookUp/BillLookUp.pl?Session=2015&BillID=h795&submitButton=Go


  • 15 Mar 2015 5:01 PM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    Staff of Moffatt and Nichol (John Dorney) and Watershed Science (Dave Penrose) will conduct a 4-day course on the latest version (Version 4.11, September 1, 2010) of the North Carolina methodology for identifying intermittent and perennial streams and their origins from April 21 – 24, 2015 in Raleigh, NC.  This lecture and field course will focus on the method which is the standard method used across the state by the Division of Water Resources and many local as well as other state governments to identify intermittent and perennial streams and their origins.  The course will be taught in Raleigh, NC and will focus on piedmont streams although a portion of the field work will be conducted on coastal plain streams.  This class is offered in coordination with the NC Division of Water Resources and follows the same curriculum as the course taught by DWR instructors.  Any interested parties should contact John Dorney at jdorney@moffattnichol.com or by phone at 919-522-6364 for additional information.

  • 26 Feb 2015 2:14 PM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)
    Following the death of a man in Kansas, infectious disease experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment struggled to uncover the mysterious illness that led to the victim’s untimely death. Doctors at the University of Kansas Hospital have now announced that a new tick-borne virus, dubbed “Bourbon Virus” after Bourbon County, Kan., where it was first discovered, caused the man’s death.

    http://www.medicaldaily.com/bourbon-virus-new-tick-borne-virus-linked-death-kansas-man-315266


  • 04 Feb 2015 10:13 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    Are you a student or recent graduate interested in a career in the growing field of water resources? Are you a professional looking for a career change? Join us at the NC Water Resources Research Institute’s Annual Conference (March 18-19, 2015) in Raleigh to participate in an interactive session on careers in water resources. A variety of water resource sectors will be represented by over a dozen professionals who have diverse educational, professional, and personal backgrounds and who will share their experiences, knowledge, and advice about careers in this field. Participants will interact with and learn from our guests in small, rotating groups by self-selecting the sectors and professionals they would like to meet. Professional summaries and recommended questions to ask will be provided to participants prior to the session to aid in research, preparation, and to help participants choose who they are most interested in meeting. To register, please visit go.ncsu.edu/wrriac_registration or contact water_resources@ncsu.edu for more information.

  • 20 Oct 2014 7:48 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    Below is the link to the October 17, 2014 issue of the National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP) National Desk! We are very excited to offer this NAEP and Chapter Affiliate Member benefit. The NAEP National Desk is a biweekly (once every two weeks) publication of current national issues affecting the environmental professional. The NAEP National Desk is provided through a licensing agreement with Environment and Energy (E&E) Publishing, LLC (www.eenews.net). E&E's four daily online publications are ClimateWire, EnergyWire, Environment and Energy Daily, Greenwire and E&E News PM.

    The articles listed below are included in this issue:

    • OCEANS: U.S. begins planning for nationwide marine biodiversity monitoring system
    • WATER POLLUTION: EPA allows hundreds of hazardous chemicals to pass through treatment plants unnoticed -- IG Report
    • TRANSPORTATION: Department adding to NEPA exclusion list
    • RESEARCH: Conflicting ocean studies renew a scientific argument over a warming 'pause'
    • TRANSPORTATION: Texas DOT set to take over most environmental reviews
    • AIR POLLUTION: EPA unveils new model to measure transportation emissions

    The latest issue can be found at:

    2014-10-17 NAEP National Desk Newsletter.pdf

    As part of the licensing agreement, E&E Publishing is offering a discount on new subscriptions. Please see www.eenews.net/trial/naep for more information.

    The NAEP National Desk coordinator is Ron Lamb (ronaldlamb@comcast.net). Questions or comments on the NAEP National Desk should be directed to Ron or Tim Bower ( naep@naep.org ).

  • 26 Mar 2014 10:50 AM | Ward Marotti (Administrator)

    http://www2.epa.gov/uswaters

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) are publishing for public comment a proposed rule defining the scope of waters protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA), in light of the U.S. Supreme Court cases in U.S. v. Riverside Bayview, Rapanos v. United States, and Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (SWANCC), and Rapanos v. United States (Rapanos).  Today’s proposal would enhance protection for the nation’s public health and aquatic resources, and increase CWA program predictability and consistency by increasing clarity as to the scope of  “waters of the United States” protected under the Act…

    the agencies are interested in comments, scientific and technical data, caselaw, and other information that would further clarify which “other waters” should be considered similarly situated for purposes of a case-specific significant nexus determination. The agencies seek comment on a number of alternative approaches. These alternatives include potentially determining waters in identified ecological regions (ecoregions) or hydrologic-landscape regions are similarly situated for purposes of evaluating a significant nexus, as well as the basis for determining which ecoregions or hydrologic-landscape regionsshould be so identified. The agencies also solicit comment on whether the legal, technical and scientific record would support determining limited specific subcategories of waters are similarly situated, or as having a significant nexus sufficient to establish jurisdiction.

    DATES:

    Submit comments on or before [INSERT DATE 90 DAYS AFTER DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER].

     

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880by one of the following methods:

     

    Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for

    submitting comments.

     

    E-mail: ow-docket@epa.gov. Include EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880 in the subject line of the message.

     

    Mail: Send the original and three copies of your comments to: Water Docket, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 2822T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20460, Attention: Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880.

     

    Hand Delivery/Courier: Deliver your comments to EPA Docket Center, EPA West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20460, Attention Docket, ID No. EPA–HQ–OW–2011–0880. Such deliveries are accepted only during the Docket’s normal hours of operation, which are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. Special arrangements should be made for deliveries of boxed information. The telephone number for the Water Docket is 202–566–2426.

  • 12 Feb 2014 1:31 PM | Kristin Weidner

    Remediationworkshop.com is hosting a FREE half-day Technology Lecture Series on soil and groundwater remediation in Charlotte, NC on March 25, 2014.  At the end of the day, attendees will receive a CEU certificate worth 4 credit hours towards their continuing education credits.  This is a FREE workshop paid for by the national speakers and exhibitors and a box lunch is provided.  RemediationWorshop.com brings together scientists, engineers, regulators, site managers and other environmental professionals from government, academia, service and R&D firms to advance the state of the art of bioremediation and sustainable remediation technologies.

     

    Please contact Travis Bowman at

    travis@remediationworkshop.com

    or visit www.remediationworkshop.com for more information.

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