Warner and Kaine announce funding for solar energy

Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine announced over $156 million in federal funding to help low-income and disadvantaged communities in Virginia more easily access solar energy.

The funding was awarded to the Virginia Department of Energy and will be used to eliminate barriers to solar development like:

  • reducing upfront costs
  • broaden access to leasing and power purchase agreements
  • additional access to financing

This will help lower energy costs for families while creating jobs and tackling the effects of climate change.

The funds are part of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Solar for All program through the Inflation Reduction Act which supports solar projects like this as well as investments in home energy repairs and lowering the cost of energy efficient appliances.

The Commonwealth has taken recent strides in expanding clean energy including the groundbreaking of the largest clean energy project at a U.S. airport in August which will support 37,000 homes and businesses in Northern Virginia.

To view the full announcement, click here.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

$4 million grant expands Northern Shenandoah Valley’s recycling infrastructure

amanda behan

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a $4 million grant is coming to Winchester and the Northern Shenandoah Valley to expand recycling infrastructure and waste management systems.

The grant is the largest recycling investment in Virginia in 30 years.

Funding will support three primary objectives:

  • Upgrade tire grinding operations leading to marketable, reusable products 
  • Re-establish curbside recycling in towns throughout the region
  • Purchase upgraded recycling receptacles for landfills, convenience sites, and transfer locations to increase recycling capacity and overall operational efficiency.

The project aims to divert 750 tons of tires from landfills and introduce 936 tons of mulched rubber for reuse into the market annually.

Recycling at this magnitude will also result in 11,000 tons diverted from landfills each year and a CO2 emissions reduction of 12.15%.

To learn more about the recycling program in the City of Winchester, click here.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Monsanto Company makes statement following $80 million settlement with Virginia

The Monsanto Company released a statement following Attorney General Jason Miyares’ announcement regarding the $80 million settlement reached between the Company and Virginia.

In the statement, Monsanto mentions they have reached settlements with Virginia and Pennsylvania to resolve all claims relating to polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs.

The statement also highlights that the settlement does not contain an admission of liability or wrongdoing by the Company and they will fully resolve all PCB claims in both states.

Monsanto also states they never manufactured or disposed of PCBs in Pennsylvania or Virginia’s environments.

The Monsanto Company’s full statement reads:

Monsanto has reached settlement agreements with the Commonwealths of Pennsylvania and Virginia to resolve all claims relating to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a legacy product the Company ceased producing in 1977, two years before EPA banned their manufacture. The settlements contain no admission of liability or wrongdoing by the Company and will fully resolve all of those states’ PCB claims. Under the terms of the agreements, Monsanto will make a payment of $99.5 million to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (plus $500,000 in costs) and $80 million to the Commonwealth of Virginia, terms that demonstrate the prior settlement with the State of Oregon was an outlier. The Company never manufactured or disposed of PCBs in Pennsylvania or Virginia’s environments.

“In 2022, Monsanto filed a lawsuit in Missouri against six former PCB customers seeking to enforce contracts under which these companies agreed to fully defend and indemnify Monsanto. The Company entered into these indemnity agreements, beginning in 1972, as a condition of continuing to provide these former customers with bulk PCBs for use in their closed-end finished products. Monsanto ceased its legal manufacture of PCBs more than 45 years ago. Prior to this time, PCBs were highly valued as nonflammable safety fluids, specified by many electrical and building codes as well as insurance companies to protect against serious fire risk. Monsanto remains committed to defending existing and future cases at trial and will only consider settlements when it is in the Company’s interest to do so.”

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

River Report: 5-26-23

It’s another Shenandoah River Report with Mark Frondorf! As we head into Memorial weekend, Mark weighs in on a Supreme Court ruling yesterday that affects our waterways. Brought to you by Front Royal Outdoors. Let Don Roberts and his crew plan some Summer South Fork fun for you! Visit https://frontroyaloutdoors.com and find out more! Have a great weekend on the river!

(the views expressed by Mark Frondorf are not necessarily those of WZRV or Royal Broadcasting)

Winchester releases annual water quality report

The City of Winchester’s Public Utilities Department released their 2022 Annual Water Supply and Quality Report.

The report was prepared in accordance with the Virginia Health Department and EPA’s rules and regulations for drinking water.

Winchester’s drinking water was found to fully comply with all monitoring and reporting requirements without any violations reported for the 2022 calendar year.

The report includes a variety of information including the sources and treatment of local drinking water, quality of water, and a full list of potential contaminates with their suggested and actual levels.

To view the full report, click here.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Clarke County resident takes on recycling shortfall

Clarke County resident Christi McMullen saw a problem and decided to fix it.

The area did not offer glass recycling so she took it upon herself to collect glass at the Convenience Center.

She then bought a special machine that is used to grind glass back to its original state, sand.

Since starting her collection, she has recycled over 27,500 pounds of glass that was kept from the landfills.

The EPA has a tool that estimates harmful CO2 emissions and her collections have saved the environment from 3.61 metric tons of CO2 which is the equivalent of 370 gallons of gasoline.

She is selling 35 lb bags of sand made from recycled glass to support the project and accepting volunteers for the labor intensive process.

To learn more about her efforts, head to her Facebook page Glass Recycling Clarke.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

Virginia receives funding to replace lead pipes

Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine announced $46.3 million in federal funds are coming to the Virginia Department of Health Office of Drinking Water.

The funds will be used to replace lead service pipes throughout the state to help protect public health.

Both senators pointed towards the water crisis in Jackson, Mississippi as a driving force to improve Virginia’s water infrastructure.

The funding is through the Environmental Protection Agency and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act which was negotiated by Senator Warren with support from Senator Kaine.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.

River Report: 7-5-21

camping for hunger totals

In this edition of our twice-weekly Shenandoah River Reports, Riverkeeper Mark Frondorf outlines his interaction with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the EPA in dealing with the problem of algae. This very informative Shenandoah River Report is brought to you by Front Royal Outdoors. Don Roberts and his staff have many ways to get you out on the South Fork for some Summer fun. Find out more at https://frontroyaloutdoors.com

EPA increases fuel supplies

emergency funding for homeless

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a fuel transportation waiver to increase the supply of fuel in Virginia.

Gov. Northam’s state of emergency declaration allows the waivers to ensure that adequate fuel is supplied during the cyber attack on the Colonial Pipeline.

The American Automobile Association (AAA) assures the state that there is an ample supply of fuel.

Panic buying would be the cause of any shortage.

Conserving fuel is a better alternative to panic buying.

One of the lines that runs from North Carolina to Maryland has already been restarted to add to the current supply.

For more news from across the Shenandoah Valley, click here.