Public Policy

Energy Policy

Coal, natural gas and wind, in addition to pipelines and other transmission infrastructure are familiar sights on our landscapes. The ongoing challenge is to guide development of our energy resources into areas that have the least amount of impact on our most exceptional, sensitive and high value ecological areas. These include lands that the Conservancy has conveyed to public agencies in the past. WPC has a wealth of scientific and planning expertise that can help achieve this goal. In addition, the Conservancy restricts energy development on lands it owns and holds.

The following guidance document provides an overview of the principles, considerations and approaches that inform and characterize WPC’s policy work.

Natural Gas DevelopmentWindmill Energy

Over the last decade, Western Pennsylvania has seen a dramatic increase in the amount of exploration and extraction of natural gas. To address this increased activity, the Conservancy has responded by developing a public policy statement, taking a leadership role in disseminating information, and offering guidelines for addressing conservation concerns related to natural gas exploration and extraction.

You can download our Oil, Gas and Minerals Policy Statement (updated February 2015) and Considerations for Gas Leasing: Avoiding and Minimizing Ecological Harm from Natural Gas Development, a guide for landowners (updated December 2016).

Wind Energy

WPC supports the development of renewable energy sources, including wind, in suitable locations of Pennsylvania. To ensure the long-term viability of Pennsylvania's native plants, animals and habitats, WPC supports and encourages the use of the best available scientific data to guide development.

Read our Wind Energy Policy Statement (last updated May 2016).