|Posted by Michael Brooks on November 24, 2020 at 12:25 AM||comments (0)|
Norman Dean is the 2020 Watershed Hero!
Watershed Network news: See this link for more information. https://wvrivers.org/2020/11/symposium/
Last year, WV Rivers Coalition became the fiscal sponsor of the West Virginia Watershed Network (WVWN), a statewide organization of of nonprofits, state, and federal agencies who support the work of community-based watershed groups.
The Symposium, staying true to its Watershed Celebration Day roots, kicked off by honoring five outstanding groups and one individual for their contributions towards watershed restoration.
And the prestigious Watershed Hero Award, presented to an individual for their volunteer efforts that go above and beyond their call of duty, was bestowed upon Norman Dean for his nearly 20 years of service to both Sleepy Creek Watershed Association and Warm Springs Watershed Association based in the Eastern Panhandle. Norman has been the steadfast lead for the Sleepy Creek Watershed Association and Warm Springs Watershed Association’s WV Save Our Streams monitoring programs. He has trained individual volunteers and led in-stream sampling and the collection of benthic macroinvertebrates, spending countless hours analyzing, categorizing, and reporting sample results to watershed association members and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection.
|Posted by Michael Brooks on November 10, 2020 at 12:40 AM||comments (0)|
The Warm Springs Watershed Association is sponsoring a Rain Garden Workshop, Tuesday November 10, from 10am to 1pmon Congress Street in downtown Berkeley Springs.
Learn about the Rain Gardens on Congress Street, a Town of Bath public works project, funded in part by a WV Chesapeake Bay Implementation grant.
Master Gardener volunteer credit is approved for attendance. Come prepared to help plant the beds for more credit hours.
For more information please email [email protected]
|Posted by Michael Brooks on October 15, 2020 at 3:35 PM||comments (0)|
After a covid-19 semi-annual hiatus, work resumed on our major project this year, the boardwalk, bridge and walking paths in the Wetlands in front of the Widmyer Elementary School on Rt 522 south of Berkeley Springs.
The superfluous grass growth between the wetland stream and the sports oval was extensively cutback. The 5 sections of the boardwalk were installed and the planking is now 60% complete. The Boy Scout Troop 12 installed the bridge on Oct 3. The last two days have seen the meadows cut back behind the wetland to clear out old growth (honeysuckle, greenbrier, grass) to make the scenery attractive and to lay out a path from the bridge to the existing stone walk.
A good time was had by all and lots of volunteer hours have been accumulated. Unfortunately I cannot upload photos here (temporary problem) but the FaceBook page has several.
|Posted by Michael Brooks on September 24, 2020 at 11:25 AM||comments (0)|
This is the text of a letter to WV DEP requesting a public hearing in Berkeley Springs about the 522 ByPass.
Director, Division of Water and Management, DEP
ATTN: Sharon Mullins, Permitting Section
601 57th Street SE
Charleston, WV 25304-2345
Re: Application No. WVR110602
Berkeley Springs Bypass Construction
We are writing to request that a public hearing be held in Berkeley Springs regarding the NPDES permit application by WVDOH to construct a bypass in the Warm Springs Run watershed. The Warm Springs Watershed Association has been active in the Berkeley Springs community since 2008. We annually monitor and report to WVDEP the water quality of Warm Springs Run, have commissioned a number of watershed assessments, and have installed numerous best management practices and demonstration projects in the watershed that will be affected by the proposed activity. A few of our concerns raised by the WVDOH NPDES application include:
The construction disturbs a significant amount of land, impacts 14,650 feet of stream and 14.8 acres of floodplain. This amount of disturbance in a watershed already subject to flash flooding requires additional information not found in the permit application.
The application places the burden on the successful low bidder to the project to interpret the necessary protections to streams and wetlands in the area. This seems deficient and an abdication of necessary guidance.
Over 89% of the area is comprised of Weikert or Weikert -Berks Soils, with highly erodible fine and usually with less than 18 to bedrock. The soil has severe limitations for construction of embankments and ability to establish vegetation.
The calculations used for sizing sediment basins uses a woods/grass combination in good or fair condition and a Hydrologic Soil Group B infiltration as the basis for sizing all basins. The soil is Hydrologic Group D, and there are many areas that would be considered poor cover due to the documented depletion of top soil and organic matter.
The watershed hydrology is increasingly subject to flash flooding resulting from lower amounts of rain than previously caused such events. It is a narrow watershed with a large amount of impervious area. The addition of a number of sediment basins have altered the time of concentration and appear to increase the number of out of bank occurrences resulting in increased flood damage. Adding additional basins without improving infiltration of collected runoff will exacerbate flooding for the community.
Forested areas and urban tree canopy are important flood control methods for the community. The removal of over 100 acres of trees and conversion to impervious area will alter the stream conditions.
The opportunity to discuss mitigation was not afforded to the community because the WVDOH completed a renewal of a 20 year old Environmental Impact Statement. As a result residents are in the dark as to what, if any, mitigation will be done to offset the negative environmental effects of construction. We are concerned that issues that have been raised during public meetings have gone unheeded by WVDOH. The minimal thought and process in this NPDES application seems to verify that.
We are requesting that a public hearing be held in Berkeley Springs to provide the opportunity to provide more detailed information regarding our concerns and afford the community residents more time to discuss mitigation needed as a result of this project.
Katherine Lehman, President
Post Office Box 757
Berkeley Springs, WV 25411
|Posted by Michael Brooks on September 9, 2020 at 11:20 AM||comments (0)|
Our first group project since March is the installation of the boardwalk in the Widmyer Wetlands near the Widmyer Elementary School. The frames were built last spring by the Ag-Mechanics class let by Dave Aberegg at the High School.
On Aug 31, Bob Wurster led a 'demonstration project' to set the first platform. Seven masked women and men put in a fine morning digging out waterlogged post holes, trimming legs, leveling the walk and carrying the other walks into positions for continuing work when the rain abates.
The demo was so successfull that between Sep 6 and 8, the remaining 4 sections were laid in place. The faithful 5 (Bob, Tim, Kate, Andy and Rebecca) completed the job on Tuesday morning.
There's more work - filling in post holes, deck boards, stairs and weeding. But not today!
(PS Uploading photos is not working at the moment. Check our Facebook page...)