Chamber Meets with Maryland Department of Environment

On Monday, December 16, the Maryland Chamber’s Environment Committee and the Maryland Department of Environment (MDE) held their annual meeting to discuss the department’s legislative initiatives for the 2014 General Assembly session, and key environmental issues and initiatives that will impact Maryland businesses.

Secretary Bob Summers gave an overview of the department’s 2014 initiatives which include: the development of the state’s draft implementation plan for Greenhouse Gas reduction, reaching the two-year milestone for the Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP), the development of the new Chesapeake Bay agreement with the Chesapeake Bay Commission, the preparation of the final report on best practices for hydraulic fracturing of Marcellus Shale and ensuring county compliance with the stormwater remediation laws. During his presentation, Summers stated that we could expect to see legislation from the department to allow some of the funds from the Bay Restoration Fund to be used for septic systems and modifications to assist counties in regulating the new septic systems.

In addition to Secretary Summers, members of his senior staff provided updates on several issues reverent to our membership such as Accountability for Growth and Zero Waste. Deputy Secretary David Costello informed the group that the stakeholder workgroup established for the offset regulations are meeting regularly in effort to find a mutual agreement between the state and stakeholders before releasing the proposed regulations for public comment and review. Deputy Secretary Costello also stated that the department is currently developing a conceptual plan to reduce the state’s waste by 2040 and plans on sharing its plan for zero waste with stakeholders mid to late spring.

Secretary Summers thanked the Maryland Chamber for its partnership with MDE and encouraged attendees to work with MDE through workgroups and advisory councils. For more information, contact Deriece Pate Bennett at dpatebennett@mdchamber.org.

Legislative Issues Tag: Environment & Energy

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