EXPLAINER | Delaware Watershed
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Delaware Watershed

The crew on the Drillboat Apache brings in lines tied to explosives used to break up rocks at the bottom of the Delaware River near Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania. It’s one of the final stages of a controversial project to deepen the river’s shipping channel.

Kimberly Paynter / WHYY

The crew on the Drillboat Apache brings in lines tied to explosives used to break up rocks at the bottom of the Delaware River near Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania. It’s one of the final stages of a controversial project to deepen the river’s shipping channel.

StateImpact Pennsylvania, Newsworks.org, WHYY and NJ Spotlight are collaborating on a series of stories about the Delaware River Watershed.

The watershed stretches from upstate New York through Pennsylvania and New Jersey, emptying out in the Delaware Bay. It supplies water to more than 15 million people, or about 5% of the nation’s population. Its natural lands both protect clean water and provide a habitat of regional and hemispheric importance.

The story of the river includes stories of its people and wildlife that depend on it for survival; the threats to continued sources of clean water; and the river as an economic engine.

The project is funded by The William Penn Foundation. Below are contributions from StateImpact Pennsylvania.

Latest stories


A Chicago-based redeveloper was the winning bid for the bankrupt Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery. PES was the largest refiner on the East Coast, but the city says there are no plans for the site to remain a refinery.

No plans for bankrupt Philadelphia Energy Solutions to re-open as refinery, city says

A Chicago-based firm bid $240 million to become new owner of the 1300-acre site in southwest Philadelphia.
By Catalina Jaramillo

Detailed view on the newly installed system to filter out PFAS Forever Chemicals at Well #2 of the Horsham Water and Sewer Authority facility in Horsham, Pa., on August 22, 2019.

PFAS chemicals detected in water supplies nationwide

In Philadelphia, the survey found two of the most commonly researched PFAS chemicals at levels far below the EPA’s recommended limit.
By Susan Phillips

Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery in South Philadelphia. Workers are in the process of neutralizing a highly toxic substance as part of a shut down.

Chicago-based Hilco Redevelopment Partners buys PES refinery for $240 million

Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery entered bankruptcy after an explosion and fire ripped through the facility last June.
By Catalina Jaramillo

The dredger named the

Construction on the Mariner East 2 pipeline has faced myriad problems, including damaged water supplies and sinkholes in a residential neighborhood in Chester County.
Updated: December 3, 2019 | 4:30 pm

Chester County DA charges Energy Transfer security manager, others in scheme to use constables for Mariner East pipeline security

Those charged include employees from the international security firm TigerSwan.
By Susan Phillips

An LNG tanker in Tokyo Bay unloads its cargo at a regasification plant at the Port of Yokohama, Japan.

America’s shale gas ‘revolution’ has led to exports that span the globe — and helped solve Japan’s energy needs after a nuclear disaster

Drilling of the Marcellus and Utica shale created a glut of natural gas and drove down prices. Now, new pipelines and export terminals are aiding overseas sales.

By Susan Phillips

Wolf speaks to reporters after an event in Camp Hill on Nov. 13.

Wolf says he’s unaware of any wrongdoing in Mariner East pipeline permitting process

The FBI has reportedly opened a corruption investigation into the way the administration issued permits for the multibillion-dollar Mariner East 2.

By Katie Meyer

The Andover estate in Thornbury Township, Delaware County, along the route of the Mariner East 2 pipeline which began operating on Dec. 29. A valve site for the pipeline is in the center of the picture.

In this file photo, Mariner East 2 pipeline construction crews work in the backyards of homes on Lisa Drive in West Whiteland Township, Chester County, on May 2, 2018 after sinkholes opened in the area. That caused one of the ME2 project's many delays.
Updated: November 12, 2019 | 9:02 pm

Associated Press: FBI is investigating Wolf administration’s issuing of Mariner East pipeline permits

The Associated Press cites three sources who say FBI agents have interviewed current or former state employees in recent weeks about the Mariner East project and the construction permits.

By Staff

A basket of crabs caught on the Delaware bayshore.
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