Save The Allegheny is a regional environmental and citizen advocacy organization that formed in response to the lack of transparency by Coudersport Area Municipal Authority (CAMA) regarding their partnership with Epiphany Environmental to create a frac wastewater treatment plant to work in conjunction and alongside our local sewage treatment plant. CAMA chose to not include the public in this community transforming project. This is a cause to restore our rights.
We are working to improve our understanding of how this monumental undertaking to restructure our community occurred; explore its benefits and detriments, and share this information with the public as a community liaison using local, county, state and federal agency documented research and informational programs including Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), specifically the laws that regulate wastewater management and Publicly Owned Treatment Works or POTW’s, the term commonly used for sewage plants.
Of special concern is the proximity of the frac wastewater treatment facility to the Coudersport Area Elementary School, downwind one mile from leased site.
Save The Allegheny is a collaborated effort by volunteers seeking governmental and agency insight after CAMA refused to allow questions in its special meeting designated for that purpose.
Save The Allegheny sees CAMA's decision to implement a frac wastewater treatment facility here as a short-sighted decision biased by appeasing corporate, not public interests. CAMA accepted a proposal from a JKLM Energy representative to “fill a gap” and provide the regional shale gas industry with a local, Centralized Wastewater Treatment (CWT) facility.
Site of the proposed facility at the headwaters of the Allegheny River threatens the drinking water of downstream communities and the region's exceptional value watershed that has brought tourism and revenue into our area for generations. Potter County Visitors Association (PCVA) has invested tremendous effort and expense to promote Potter County as a tourist destination. Area residents and businesses have used demographic research based on these key findings to better strategize, promote and develop their investments. “Our study site, Potter County, Pennsylvania, represents a typical American rural area with a population of 18,080, which is currently struggling to pursue economic revitalization by attracting tourists.” Segmenting the rural tourism market, The case of Potter County, Pennsylvania, USA; Journal of Vacation Marketing, Sage Journals, http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1356766712471231
CAMA needs to show the area residents that it acted in good faith. The board needs to answer the lingering questions and address the fiscal, environmental, health and safety concerns related to their plan that were raised before their decision to lease was made.
Save The Allegheny will continue to expand its scope by expanding on established rapport with DEP and other agency officials, conservation groups and others to provide the community with guidance and information during the remainder of the application process.
It is our hope that justice will prevail. And citizens’ rights to protect their environment and have a voice in the vision of their community's future will be restored.
"The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic and esthetic values of the environment. Pennsylvania’s public natural resources are the common property of all the people, including generations yet to come. As trustee of these resources, the Commonwealth shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all the people."