Delaware river

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PHILADELPHIA (AP) - A freighter has run aground in the Delaware River south of Philadelphia.

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The Army Corps of Engineers has approved speeding up $62.5 million for deepening the main channel of the Delaware River for the current budget year.

The agency wants to make sure that the entire 102 mile project is done by 2017.

Most of the money will go toward dredging, blasting and rock  removal on a portion just north of Edgemoor near the Philadelphia International Airport.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the schedule was moved up to make sure that contractors could meet restrictions that limit work to a December 1st through March 15th time frame.

delaware.watersheds.gov

A new report by the Army Corps of Engineers is warning state and coastal residents that they need to rethink their policies involving the coastline in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

For Delaware, the report says, there are two high risk areas.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that these include the shoreline of the Delaware River and Bay as well as the resort areas of the Inland Bays.

During Superstorm Sandy the worst flood damage occurred on the bay sides of Fenwick Island, South Bethany Beach, Bethany Beach and Dewey Beach following the hurricane.

PBF

PBF is seeking a key permit for a $100 million hydrogen plants for ultra-low sulfur fuel production at its Delaware City refinery.

The company would like to begin production by November of next year.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that news of the application surfaced after environmental groups pressed state officials about a cooling tower system at the plant.

The groups say the recycling tower is important in reducing the refinery’s 300 million gallon per day withdrawals from the Delaware River.

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Plans to expand the Port of Wilmington that could bring some 4-thousand jobs and it would stretch over 176-acres on the Delaware River in New Castle.

Today, the public will get a chance to take a look at the preliminary findings of a $100-thousand feasibility study.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that it has obtained a draft copy of the report on the $400 to $500 million project.

It is a project that has been pushed by the International Longshoremen’s Association as a viable option to keeping the port competitive over the next half century.

delaware chapter of the sierra club

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Environmental groups want the state to hold a public hearing on a plan to restore and protect Delaware River shoreline at docks near Delaware City.

Delaware Sierra Club and Delaware Audubon said in a letter to state environmental regulators that PBF Energy's plan could attract birds near an area they say is at risk for oil spills.

PBF's plan for its docks at its Delaware City refinery includes refilling shoreline and replacing nearly 1,000 5-foot high wave dampeners. Pilings would be driven to anchor oil spill containment booms.

EVRAZ website

The state of Delaware has decided to carry out a wide-ranging environmental evaluation at the Evraz Claymont Steel plant which has been a source of pollution problems over the years.

But Department of Natural Resources and Environmental control Secretary Collin O’Mara told the Wilmington News Journal that work begin  in mid-July one the 425-acres of the plant that ceased operations in December.

O’Mara told the Wilmington News Journal that this would be done to assess pollution risks and prepare for a change of ownership or usage.

Delaware River Basin Commission

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware environmental and health officials are easing fish consumption advisories for fish caught in the tidal Delaware River, citing reduced levels of chemical contaminants in the water.

Officials on Wednesday said the fish consumption advisory for the river from the Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey border to the Chesapeake and Delaware canal has been updated because of falling levels of polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, dioxins and furans, chlorinated pesticides, and mercury.

PBF Energy

DOVER, Del. (AP) - Officials at the Delaware City refinery are trying to determine the source of a chemical release that left a sheen on the Delaware River.

A spokesman for refinery owner PBF Energy said Wednesday that the release was reported to state environmental officials late Tuesday night but that he didn't know what type of hydrocarbon material was involved or where it came from.

PBF says it deployed booms, absorbent and skimmers to contain the release.

It was not immediately clear whether the sheen has reached the main body of the river.

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There were no bids from contractors in the latest phase of deepening the Delaware River channel and using the sand to rebuild Broadkill Beach.

With the latest setback the Army Corps of Engineers says that it will try to figure out why there were no bids before moving forward.

Delaware Environmental chief Collin O’Mara told the Wilmington News Journal that he had just signed the last five outstanding easements that would have allowed the sand to be pumped onto Broadkill when he learned yesterday afternoon about the no-bid situation.

family photo

FINNS POINT, Del. (AP) - A body has washed ashore along the Delaware River, and state police are investigating.

The body was discovered Tuesday night along Finns Point, an area along the eastern shore of the river near the New Jersey border.

An autopsy is being done to determine the person's identity and cause of manner and death.

Delaware Coastal Cleanup, dnrec.delaware.gov

DOVER, Del. (AP) - State environmental officials got more than 2,000 volunteers to join in Delaware's annual Coastal Cleanup.

The 26th annual cleanup took place  on Saturday morning along 97 miles of Delaware river and ocean shorelines, as well as wetland and watershed areas. More than 40 sites in New Castle, Kent, and Sussex counties are targeted this year.

Last year's cleanup volunteers collected more than 10 tons of trash from along Delaware's shorelines and tributaries.