The Poconos region attracts millions of people to its scenic and natural beauty, as well as to its many local businesses. We are proud of the mutually beneficial relationship that has been built between business and the environment, a relationship that provides for good jobs and wholesome family recreation.
But many of our clean, fishable streams are now being threatened by business interests who would rather pollute them than invest in updated technology and engineering practices that would protect our streams. As local business owners, hunters, anglers, hikers, conservationists, and community members, we demand that our clean streams, which support a healthy economy, remain a priority for our community.
The utmost protection of streams in our region is important for many reasons. While only two percent of PA streams are classified as "Exceptional Value," 80 percent of the state’s “EV” streams are in the Poconos, primarily located in Monroe, Pike, and Wayne counties. It is everyone’s responsibility to protect these streams, and we rely on local businesses to continue to respect our natural environment while reaping the rewards of being located in a scenic and beautiful place that attracts so many customers and tourists. Protecting the unique EV waters through innovative and thoughtful development must be the future for the Poconos, and it will ensure a thriving economy for generations to come.
We ask you – our elected officials and business leaders – to prioritize the protection of our clean streams by publicly supporting the PA Department of Environmental Protection’s and the Environmental Quality Board’s ability to safeguard our extraordinary Pocono waters through appropriate Exceptional Value designation.
Together, we can continue to maintain our reputation as a region in which a robust economy and outstanding nature go hand-in-hand. Allowing thoughtless development to take over the Poconos could ruin not only the heritage of the area, but the longevity of the natural beauty that has drawn people to the region for centuries. As a leader, your vocal support for Exceptional Value streams in the Poconos is critical because:
EV is the highest quality stream designation and ensures that streams receive the strongest level of legal protection under state law.
After a stream is designated EV, its outstanding water quality must always be protected and no degradation of the waters is permitted under any circumstance, thus protecting our precious natural resources that attract so many to the region.
These streams not only provide local and regional benefits, but are also the headwaters to the Delaware River, the source of drinking water for millions of people throughout the region.
The EV streams in the upper and mid Delaware River supports approximately $22 billion in regional economic activity, which includes hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, tourism, and farming, according to Delaware Riverkeeper Network.
As our elected officials and business leaders, we urge you to make the right choice for our community. Investing in the protection of our streams means investing in the future of our region, and we believe this must be a priority for all.
Please tell the PA Department of Environmental Protection and the Environmental Quality Board that you support their efforts to keep streams in the Poconos protected under Exceptional Value designation. Our clean water, our clean streams, and our communities depend on it.