National Parks Group Asks Pennsylvania Court to Protect Upper Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River

 
PRESS RELEASE
  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date:   December 23, 2011
Contact:   April Mims, Northeast Program Manager, National Parks Conservation Association C: 917.903.8862
Kati Schmidt, Senior Media Relations Manager National Parks Conservation Association, C: 415.847.1768


National Parks Group Asks Pennsylvania Court to Protect Upper Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River

Philadelphia, PA—Today, the nation’s leading voice for our national parks, the nonprofit National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), filed a Friend of the Court brief in support of the Upper Delaware Council’s lawsuit to prevent the expansion of a quarry in Lakawaxen Township, PA.  The proposed expansion of this quarry would violate the Upper Delaware River Management Plan (RMP) and would harm the Upper Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River.

“The Upper Delaware National Scenic and Recreational river is a national treasure that must be protected for our children and grandchildren to enjoy,” said Cinda Waldbuesser, NPCA’s Pennsylvania senior program manager.  “Since 1978, the River Management Plan has successfully ensured that the Upper Delaware remains a pristine river for park visitors to enjoy. Local governments must continue to abide by the plan to protect the Delaware’s clean water.”

One of the cleanest rivers in the country, the Delaware River is America’s largest un-dammed river east of the Mississippi and the last major free-flowing river on the East coast.  The river provides drinking water to more than 15 million people, exceptional recreational opportunities for visitors, and habitat for a diverse wildlife population.    In 1978, recognizing the importance of the river, Congress designated 73.4 miles of the Upper Delaware River as part of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.  The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act states that the river must be protected in its free-flowing condition and that it must be managed for the benefit and enjoyment of present and future generations.

In July, the Holbert Brothers Bluestone Quarry, located in Lackawaxen Township within the river corridor, applied for and was granted Conditional Use Approval to expand their existing quarry by 40 acres.  However, this approval is in violation of the township’s zoning regulations and of the River Management Plan.  In order to protect the river corridor, the River Management Plan limits quarrying use to two acres at any one time. 

“This blatant disregard for local land use ordinances within the Upper Delaware Scenic River corridor sets a dangerous precedent and could have long lasting impacts on one of the cleanest rivers in the county,” said Waldbuesser. 

Also of concern, Lakawaxen township denied the Upper Delaware Council, the entity responsible for representing local, state, and federal government interests for the river, the ability to be present and participate at the hearing when the expansion was approved.  Prior policy practices have allowed the Upper Delaware Council to participate in past hearings on this very same issue. 

“The board’s unlawful decision to deny the Upper Delaware Council’s participation in the conditional use hearing is an abuse of discretion,” said Susan Kraham, NPCA’s attorney and senior staff attorney for Columbia University School of Law Environmental Law Clinic.  “This decision will hinder Upper Delaware Council’s ability to effectively advocate on behalf of the Upper Delaware, which will ultimately jeopardize the long-term health of the national park and river.”

###

 

 

Close

Want to learn more about the  ?

The   can be seen in the wild in America’s national parks. Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect parks in   & other states

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Sign up to protect   and other National Parks

Why not join the National Parks Conservation Association Community to protect and preserve our national parks?

Please leave this field empty
Yes, please sign me up for NPCA’s newsletter and other emails about protecting our national parks!

National Parks Conservation Association
National Parks Conservation Association

Log In

Or log in with your connected Facebook or Twitter account:

GO

Welcome to our growing community of park advocates. Thanks for signing up!

Sign Up:

Or sign up by connecting your Facebook or Twitter account:

GO