Updated Daily  11/22/2017 RochesterEnvironment.com

Our Environment is changing: Keep up with the Change. *Note: Henceforth 'environment' means "our life support system."


Rochester, NY was one of the hosts of the World Canal Conference on September 19, 2010.

If it deals with the environment, Rochester, New York, and the Internet, it's here.

Adapting to and mitigating Climate Change in a way that sustains all life while striving to do so equitably is the defining issue of our time.  How we comport ourselves during this historic trial by fire will reveal our true nature.

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Since 1998, RochesterEnvironment.com has been an ongoing experiment to completely inform one community [Rochester, NY] of all its environmental Newslinks, Events, Daily Updates, Resources, Environmental Education, regional Climate Change, and Environmental Issues. Green Apps, and more...    * Please read this carefully, it's not the usual Yada Yada

(Above scripts from Dynamic Drive)  [Website best viewed on your tablet device.]

RochesterEnvironment.com – This is site a free media resource to encourage public dialogue on local environmental issues, a local newspaper devoted to a single community’s environment, an archive of Environmental News to capture a proper sense of time in which environmental issues transpire, and an attempt to frame environmental issues free of corporate, governmental, and any ideology.  Sustainability, connecting the dots of our environmental information, rules.  Understanding that all of our local Environmental Issues now must be interpreted in the context of Climate Change, which will be continually moving the bar on the state of our environment, is critical for our survival.  We Don't Get It!

The great conundrum of our times is that in a time of rapidly occurring Climate Change and a rapid disintegration of the environment that we need to thrive and survive, mainstream media still marginalizes environmental concerns. [Check often for this continually updated list on the possible consequences of Climate Change in our region--supported by facts.] If there isn’t a quick and substantial change in how environmental concerns are reported, edited, and chosen in mainstream media, the public will continue to believe that environmental concerns are merely special interest matters, issues they can avoid if they choose.  How can we inform the public and monitor our environment without abridging our Freedoms--in enough time to save ourselves?   Bookmark This Site

Watch this short video about addressing Climate Change from friend and dedicated advocate for strong action on Climate Change. Paul’s message, the importance of showing up and demonstrating that you care about our people and our planet, will get you moving. Imagine if we all felt and ACTED towards our life support system as Paul. RT. Please make Paul’s message go viral. #StandUpForScience  #climatechangeshealth  ClimateFacts #MarchForScience #ScienceMatters #ClimateChange

Likely Changes     Real Changes      Frank's Essays     Climate Studies

Anything else you're interested in is not going to happen if you can't breathe the air and drink the water. Don't sit this one out. Do something. You are by accident of fate alive at an absolutely critical moment in the history of our planet.-- Carl Sagan

 

Page Contents: Rochester-area NewsLinks | Daily Updates | Green Business | Top 10 things you can do for our environment | Green Events | Green Actions | This month's Winner of the Environmental Site Award

 

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SEARCH: Use search engine below to find anything posted since 1998.

Rochester area NewsLinks.

NewsLinks: Get the most important environmental news of the day and monitor your environment daily.  Also: Get Newslinks since 1998… Unlike other news, environmental news often takes time to reach our attention. Follow potential problems and catch them before they're catastrophes.

CheckerRecent Daily Average Mauna Loa CO2: July 29:   406.04 ppm  (from NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory Global Monitoring Division

 

This week's RENewsletter has been published RENewsletter November 19, 2017 Each week get all the environmental news, events, actions and comment free.  Click Subscribe

 

Today's Rochester-Area Environmental News:

My hope is that you will read these stories and connect them to the world we now live in, one that is warming because of Climate Change.  Then pass these stories to those you are connected to and have them spread the word.  Mainstream media is either unwilling or incapable of reporting responsibly and adequately on a world that is warming, which is why many still don’t understand the vast changes we must make to adapt and mitigate Climate Change. 

Posted Today - Monday, November 20, 2017

  • Toxic Algae: Once A Nuisance, Now A Severe Nationwide Threat He recovered, but Lake Erie hasn’t. Nor have other waterways choked with algae that’s sickening people, killing animals and hammering the economy. The scourge is escalating from occasional nuisance to severe, widespread hazard, overwhelming government efforts to curb a leading cause: fertilizer runoff from farms. Pungent, sometimes toxic blobs are fouling waterways from the Great Lakes to Chesapeake Bay, from the Snake River in Idaho to New York’s Finger Lakes and reservoirs in California’s Central Valley. (November 19, 2017) The Post-Journal [more on Water Quality in our area]

  • Lake Effect Snow Season is Shifting and Contracting Arctic air begins to race across the relatively milder water of the Great Lakes every fall, generating lake effect snow. These snowfalls can be intense, but are often localized. Several inches of snow can fall a few miles away from a place that only gets flurries. As the planet has warmed from the increase in greenhouse gases, so have the lakes, meaning more evaporation into the atmosphere during the winter. Paradoxically, this had led to an increase in lake effect snow, but that trend is not expected to last. A recent study used a regional climate model to investigate these changes in lake effect snow if our current rate of greenhouse gas emissions continues. By mid-century, the amount of seasonal lake effect snow is projected to increase modestly, as the Great Lakes will remain ice-free longer into the winter. However, as the air warms, the amount of snow during the transitional seasons of late fall and early spring is expected to decrease, with more of the precipitation falling as rain. (November 15, 2017) Climate Central [more on Climate Change in our area]


News Highlight

Climate Change is not just an individual responsibility      

by Frank J. Regan


“Photo by Frank J. Regan: "

This mostly wonderful essay by the Democrat and Chronicle Editorial Board about local efforts, including those of the Rochester People’s Climate Coalition (RPCC), gets at the heart of what folks in our region can do to address Climate Change.

Editorial: Climate change is everyone's problem While the United States is no longer leading the world against climate change, state and local efforts aimed at helping stabilize the earth’s temperature are building steam. While these initiatives are critical, they are also not enough. We must do more. Even New York state, which has set some of the nation’s most ambitious targets for lowering greenhouse gas emissions, is falling short according to a new report from the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Economic researchers outlined a more dramatic clean energy investment plan that they say would “put the state on a true climate stabilization trajectory,” create jobs, and show the world what needs to be done. Now. The reason for urgency is obvious. A time series heat map created by NASA shows the average variation of global surface temperatures between 1884 and 2016. Cooler averages are marked in shades of blue. Warmer averages are colored red. Blue goes from being the overwhelmingly dominant color, to nearly disappearing off the map within the past 35 years. (November 15, 2017) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on Climate Change in our area]

While I agree that Climate Change is everyone’s problem, I’m having a problem with the last sentence: “We do not need to be participating in this week’s United Nations climate talks in Bonn to increase our own knowledge about what needs to be done, and to take individual responsibility for helping change the world.” The statement is literally correct, but sidesteps the responsibility of all the players (including media, government, and businesses) involved in this crisis.

First, I’m not sure who the ‘we’ in this sentence refers to: the D&C newspaper, ‘we’ (as in the public), or ‘we’ as in the US federal government. If the “we” refers to the D&C, I think that this major print publication should be reporting to the local public what is going on at the COP23 climate talk in Bonn and why it is important that our government chose to pull out of the Paris Accord, but showed up anyways peddling more fossil fuel use. In this quickly warming world, we must be able to continually depend on our local major media to communicate accurately and effectively how this crisis will affect our ability to plan sustainably in this region. The media is our collective information system that we now depend on for a precise model of reality—a reality that is already changing with more harmful algae blooms, more flooding, and more disruptive winters due to a warming Arctic. [See Rochester, NY’s Climate Action Plan.]    

However, the federal government is also ‘we’, and its forfeiture of our responsibility is incredibly important, and should not be depicted as insignificant, as this editorial and many other recent pronouncements have implied. Efforts by other actors, such as New York State, California, Jerry Brown, and Michael Bloomberg are to be applauded. [See: ‘America’s Pledge’]

But these efforts are no replacement for a strong federal role. The United States needs to participate in the climate talks in a leadership and responsible role both for moral reasons (most of the greenhouse gas emissions that have already changed our climate are ours) and because only nations can enter into treaties, change a nation’s laws, and make sure public monies are directed towards the sciences that tell us Climate Change is a clear and present danger. In order to effect change on a scale and time frame that will matter, nations working together are the most likely (or perhaps only) actors who can make it work.

If left only to “individual responsibility”, this crisis is most likely to be ignored by the majority, or result in ad hoc, conflicting, and insufficient solutions until it’s too late.

Time passes.   more...

(Above scripts from Dynamic Drive

Green Business.

Green Business - We are working on finding Green Jobs for our area.  As always, we will post anything we can dip up on finding employment for people who want to sustain themselves and the planet at the same time.

Here's the Latest on Green Business News for the Rochester, NY area:

  • Rochester Regional Health announces green energy initiative Rochester Regional Health says it intends to source 100 percent of the electricity it uses from renewable energy sources and carbon free production by the year 2025. President and CEO Eric Bieber says that's a big deal, and the organization will have to things differently as they go forward.  But he maintains it's the right thing to do, and it equates to taking scores of cars off the road and burning many tons less coal. (October 20, 2017) WXXI News [more on Green Business and Energy in our area]

  • Organic farming operation to bring 50 jobs to Brockport Organic farming is bringing 50 jobs to the Brockport area. That according to Governor Cuomo who says that Duncan Family Farms, a leading organic grower based in Arizona, has expanded into Monroe County. Duncan is partnering with Newstead Ranch on an $11.8 million dollar project. The company will be growing baby leaf items including spinach and romaine for customers throughout the region and along the East Coast. They eventually expect to expand into other specialty vegetable crops. (September 6, 2017) WXXI News [more on Food and Green Business in our area]

  • Company to open nation's largest hydroponic greenhouse in Rochester A company is set to open what Governor Cuomo's office says will be the biggest commercial hydroponic facility in the nation in Rochester. The governor says Clearwater Organic Farms  will build a 15 acre, 650,000 square-foot facility at Eastman Business Park, creating 137 new jobs. About half of those positions will be reserved for veterans and the unemployed, the state says. The project is expected to be completed by the end of the year. "The new Clearwater Organic Farms facility will drive innovation, create jobs for New Yorkers who need them most, and bolster economic growth throughout the region," Governor Cuomo said in a release. "Our economic strategy continues to generate new activity, attract high-growth industries to the region and build momentum to move the Finger Lakes forward." (May 10, 2017) WHEC Rochester [more on Plants and Food and Green Business in our area]

  • RIT-led consortium wins $70M in funding for clean energy institute A Rochester Institute of Technology-led consortium has won a nationwide competition and secured $70 million in federal funding to bring a public-private clean energy manufacturing institute here, officials announced Tuesday. The competition was held by the U.S. Department of Energy. The consortium will match the federal award of $70 million for a total investment of $140 million, officials said. The RIT-led consortium includes Xerox Corp. and Caterpillar Inc. (January 3, 2017) Rochester Business Journal [more on Green Business in our area]

Event Highlight:

Join us on October 28th in Rochester, NY!      

Saturday Evening  October 28th, 2017 8AM – 5PM   

Harley School, 1981 Clover St. Rochester, NY  

The Rochester People's Climate Coalition has been working with a number of other organizations from around the state to put together a "NY Climate Solutions Summit" that will take place on October 28 here in Rochester.  

 

The summit aims to build a larger movement across NYS that is prepared to take action to implement effective climate solutions.  We will provide an opportunity for clean energy and climate organizers from communities across the region to come together to share projects, resources, experiences and skills to tackle climate change and implement solutions.

 

The Climate Solutions Summit will offer:  Case studies and workshops in renewable energy (solar, wind, renewable heating and cooling), energy efficiency, green transportation, sustainable land use, environmental justice, technical skills, movement building skills and networking with members of the climate movement.

 

Please consider joining us for this event, and don't hesitate to invite others in your network!  You must register here:  For more information, go to NYClimateSummit.org or visit our FB event page. Let me know if you have any comments or questions.  To add your group as a supporter of the Summit, contact info@nyclimatesummit.org.

Top Ten Things You Can Do for Rochester’s Environment .

This list assumes you are ready to take responsibility (as a member of the only species capable of doing so) for your presence at this critical time in our planet’s history.  And, it isn’t about just your personal fulfillment thing—our environment isn’t politics, religion, a fad, or a cause; it’s science all the way down. Pollute the planet, stuff happens.  Finally, in order for the effects of this list to be effective a lot (I mean billions) of humans need to do them too.  In the deepest practical sense, everything you do (where you live, what you eat, what you buy, what you throw away) matters to our environment. Ready folks, here we go:

  • Be engaged with the issues surrounding our local environment by monitoring the media, books, reports, and the Internet using the laws of Nature as your guide to monitor how our lifestyle is affecting our environment.
  • When you consume anything--food, water, cars, gadgets, whatever—do so as though you were demonstrating how to consume for the rest of the world—considering the lifecycle of the products you buy, how they are made, how they are used, and how you get rid of them.
  • When you have someplace to go, consider all your options in order of their affect on our environment: walking, biking, car-pooling, mass transit, and lastly a personal vehicle. 
  • Conserve energy until we find a non-polluting, renewable energy source.
  • Vote. If you’re doing good for our environment and your representative in government doesn’t get it, you’re just making yourself feel good without much effect.
  • Recycle, reuse and encourage your local government to create a place where recycling just about everything is the norm.
  • Think twice before using toxic chemicals that make your yard look like a golf course and your house like a hospital.
  • Consider other species (plants and animals) and their role in sustaining our environment.  Our environment, our life support system, IS plants and animals and soil. When they don’t function neither will we.
  • Adopt green business practices: your business will save our environment and be able to compete with the rest of the world.
  • Communicate your concerns about the state of our environment to everyone. Sustainability isn’t going to work unless everyone gets on board quickly.    Encourage all your news sources to have an environmental section daily and help move environmental investigations and news to mainstream media.

 350.org

350.org is an international campaign that's building a movement to unite the world around solutions to the climate crisis—the solutions that science and justice demand. Our mission is to inspire the world to rise to the challenge of the climate crisis—to create a new sense of urgency and of possibility for our planet.  

 

Green Events.

RochesterEnvironment.com Environmental Calendar is the longest running and most comprehensive environmental calendar for our area. Got an environment event? Contact me and I'll get it listed.

Here are some events coming up soon & lots more...      

November 2017 

  • Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd.
    • PUBLIC MEETING Monday NOV 20 Brighton - Plan to clear cut major sections of the Erie Canal | In the Great Lakes Watershed - Proposed Plan for Clearcutting trees from earthen berms of the Erie Canal:   PUBLIC MEETING Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm: Open House Format: people at displays to answer questions, written public input collected, no formal presentations.   The meeting is slated for 6 p.m. Nov. 20 in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd.   Did you see that NYS Canal Corporation is planning to clear cut trees and grind out stumps and replace with mowed grass to stabilize the earthen berms along the sections of the Erie Canal where the canal is above grade and walled by earthen berms?  Reason: According to FEMA, woody roots destabilize earthen dams/berms and make it more likely to leak, burst or fail in very wet, heavy rain conditions.  Recall 1972 Bushnell's Basin canal breach during very wet season.   (See attached FEMA doc and D&C news article.)  This activity will remove big areas of wooded & diverse wildlife habitat and be boring, hot, sunny and exposed, with the increased expense and pollutants of mowing a boring grass lawn instead of a beautify canopy of trees sequestering excess carbon from the atmosphere and creating a long wildlife migration corridor along the canal...   ... unless a possible alternate plan can be adopted, such as: to replace the trees with diverse native plants to intentionally create a native grassy meadow habitat home to bluebird, butterfly and other wildlife populations that can be mowed just once a year or two to prevent woody plants from taking over. 
  • Wednesday, November 29. 6:30 p.m. at The Little Theatre #1    
    • Rochester Street Films: Winter Edition Wednesday, November 29. 6:30 p.m. at The Little Theatre #1   Reserve Your Seat   Reserve your seat in advance with an online donation to Reconnect Rochester (suggested $5 – $25).   Rochester’s streets are alive with activity (when the weather is nice). But how to do we stay active when winter bears down upon us? Might Rochester even capitalize on its reputation as one of the snowiest places in America? Get inspired with these short films and clips from around the world. Our featured short film will follow Mona Seghatoleslami, host of WXXI Classical 91.5 FM on her winter commute as she bikes and buses into downtown. After the film Mona will lead a panel discussion with local leaders including…     PLUS...   Zagster will give a short presentation about the success of Rochester’s bike share this season, and what to expect for next year.  
  • Thursday November 30, 2017  6:30-8:30 PM  141 East Avenue  Rochester, NY 14604
    • How We Can Reverse Global Warming Some say it is already too late to save the planet from massive global warming. Come learn that’s not true - and  what are the most important projects we should be working on! In an inspiring workshop, you will learn and discuss the latest research about how we can reverse  global warming. Topics include: ●     Visionary Paul Hawken and his ground-breaking research ●     Hawken’s top 80 identified solutions ●     Discussion and reflection on  taking immediate action Move from “game over” to “game ON!” Christ Church  141 East Avenue  Rochester, NY 14604 Thursday November 30, 2017  6:30-8:30 PM    Register here Sponsored by Christ Church and the Pachamama Alliance

December 2017

  • December 1 – December 2 2 First Unitarian Church of Rochester, 220 Winton Rd S, Rochester, New York 14610
    • Alternative Fair 2017 Public · Hosted by Metro Justice December 1 – December 2 2 First Unitarian Church of Rochester, 220 Winton Rd S, Rochester, New York 14610 THE FAIR IS 2 DAYS--Friday 5:00 pm - 9:00 pm and Saturday 10:00 am until 4:00 pm! Metro Justice’s values are integral to our annual Alternative Fair. You can enjoy FAMILY HOLIDAY SHOPPING with a conscience at Metro Justice’s 35th annual Alternative Fair, featuring thousands of unique fair trade, earth friendly, and locally produced goods that support a strong local economy and a just and sustainable world. Want to be a vendor? Contact Andrew Thomas, Fundraising and Membership Director (andrew@metrojustice.org), for a vendor application and information. This is holiday shopping at prices the whole family can afford, and for many families, it’s their #1 shopping destination each year. Sale items include pottery, textiles, jewelry, fine art, toys & games, ornaments, and much more — all fair trade imports or hand crafted by local artists. There is a suggested donation of $5 for all those over age 12, and free child care is available for young children and babies. Bring the whole family for several hours, and enjoy the festive atmosphere as you shop with a conscience. Food will be available and chances are you’ll see many friends, too!
  • Dec. 5th from 6:30-8:30. Workers United: 750 East Ave., Rochester, NY
    • A "Reimagine RTS" Meeting-in-a-Box will be held at Workers United: 750 East Ave. in Rochester on Dec. 5th from 6:30-8:30. Members of local non-profit organizations with an interest in mass transit / sustainability are invited. The meeting is open to the public. The Reimagine RTS is a planning process that will study and explore changes to the RTS fixed-route transit system to better meet the changing needs of the region. For this meeting, we will be provided with guidelines by RTS's "Meeting in a Box". The "Reimagine RTS" process provides a rare opportunity to improve the public transit system in Rochester, thereby significantly reducing green-house gas emissions, providing more equitable transportation options for low-income residents, increasing mass transit ridership, and providing a stimulus for urban revitalization in downtown Rochester.
  • December 3, 2017   | 6:00 PM at First Unitarian Church, 220 S. Winton Ave., Rochester NY
    • PACHAMAMA ALLIANCE DRAWDOWN COURSE October 29, November 5, 12 and December 3, 2017  6:00 PM at First Unitarian Church. First Unitarian Church Environmental Task Force and Pachamama Alliance will be offering a 4 session series to enable you to go deeply into the solutions we need to pursue to bring down the global greenhouse gas concentration.  The Pachamama Alliance national group has put together a Drawdown course as an opportunity to come together with others on a journey to radically shift your relationship to global warming: to get more educated, inspired, empowered -- and to get in action. Through videos, presentations, individual research, and group interaction and learning we will come together over four sessions to explore the Drawdown solutions to Global Warming, how they are ranked and the overall plan. We’ll cover the science, the impact and the scale of the solutions in an inspiring and easily understandable way.  Participants will have the opportunity to research between sessions and go deeper on certain solutions that resonate with them and take on a project to get into action in their own community and to advocate for nationally and internationally. An important aspect of the course is building community among participants, sharing experiences and collaborating on ideas and opportunities for action.  The course is offered as a pilot and your input will help make it more effective to bring even more people on board.      For more information contact Sue Staropoli at suestar1@rochester.rr.com or 585-734-2816

 

Genessee RiverWatch Initiative Working to restore the waters of the Genesee, improve access, increase use and encourage economic development that benefits from and contributes to the water quality of our region.

 

 

ACTION highlight

Take Action on 'Climate Smart Communities':

Pound for pound, getting community leaders to pledge to the state’s ‘Climate Smart Communities’ program is one of the most effective things people can do to address Climate Change. Take action! It’s all spelled out for you here:

Take Action on 'Climate Smart Communities':



New York State's Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program supports municipalities as they identify, plan and carry out projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, and prepare for the challenges climate change will bring. This program provides resources that enable localities to act on climate, without mandating which programs or policies they should adopt.  

Green Action.

ACTION: Often, I receive requests to pass on alerts, petitions, Public Comments on local environmental issues needing action by the Rochester Community and around the world.  

  • ACTION: Due Date: November 19, 2017 
    • Tell DEC that you want this long-standing Rochester Brownfield cleaned up to the highest health and environmental standards Vacuum Oil Refinery Site (Rochester) - Public Comment Invited on Draft Investigation Plan Public Comment Invited About Draft Plan to Investigate Contamination at Brownfield Site on Flint and Exchange Streets, Rochester The following link opens a fact sheet that invites public comment about a draft work plan to investigate contamination at the Vacuum Oil Refinery Site #C828193 (Rochester, Monroe Co.) within New York's Brownfield Cleanup Program: here NYSDEC is accepting public comments about the draft work plan through November 19, 2017. Please see fact sheet for details. (October 18, 2017) Department of Environmental Conservation  [more on Brownfields in our area]
  • ACTION: Due Date Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd.
    • PUBLIC MEETING Monday NOV 20 Brighton - Plan to clear cut major sections of the Erie Canal | In the Great Lakes Watershed - Proposed Plan for Clearcutting trees from earthen berms of the Erie Canal:   PUBLIC MEETING Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm: Open House Format: people at displays to answer questions, written public input collected, no formal presentations.   The meeting is slated for 6 p.m. Nov. 20 in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd.   Did you see that NYS Canal Corporation is planning to clear cut trees and grind out stumps and replace with mowed grass to stabilize the earthen berms along the sections of the Erie Canal where the canal is above grade and walled by earthen berms?  Reason: According to FEMA, woody roots destabilize earthen dams/berms and make it more likely to leak, burst or fail in very wet, heavy rain conditions.  Recall 1972 Bushnell's Basin canal breach during very wet season.   (See attached FEMA doc and D&C news article.)  This activity will remove big areas of wooded & diverse wildlife habitat and be boring, hot, sunny and exposed, with the increased expense and pollutants of mowing a boring grass lawn instead of a beautify canopy of trees sequestering excess carbon from the atmosphere and creating a long wildlife migration corridor along the canal...   ... unless a possible alternate plan can be adopted, such as: to replace the trees with diverse native plants to intentionally create a native grassy meadow habitat home to bluebird, butterfly and other wildlife populations that can be mowed just once a year or two to prevent woody plants from taking over. 
  • ACTION: Due Date: November 21, 2017
    • Winter is coming – and so is Governor Cuomo’s State of the State address. Let's tell Cuomo that we expect bold climate action to be the star of the show! RSVP to call Cuomo with other Rochesterians and New Yorkers on November 21: NY Renews Call-the-Governor Day!  
  • ACTION: Due Date Now!
    • Are we helpless in the face of the Trump administration’s attacks on our environmental protections? No, says the NRDC. Find out more: "FIGHTING THE TRUMP AGENDA, A step-b-by-step guide to Trump's attacks on the environment and how you can help NRDC stop him | President Trump faces many hurdles in his quest to dismantle our system of environmental protections. Here, we document those steps, alongside NRDC’s actions to thwart Trump policies that attack our air, water, and wild spaces. We will also continuously update the page with steps you can take—because the biggest obstacle to the Trump agenda is you. "Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
  • ACTION: Due Date Now!
    • If you've been reading all the reports coming in about plastics in our oceans, you must be looking for a way to stop this kind of pollution. Take Action: Save our Oceans - End plastic pollution now! "By 2050, our oceans will have more plastic trash than fish.  It’s shameful. Half of the plastic made we use just once and throw out, choking our seas and all the animals in it.  But in days, our governments can stem this tide when they meet at a historic summit to outline their clean ocean commitments. Public pressure just got #2 polluter Indonesia to commit to a 70% reduction in plastic waste! Now we need to go after the other top polluters. If one million of us get behind a global call the Head of the UN Environment Programme will announce our petition from the summit podium and work with us to push countries to ban single-use plastics and let our oceans breathe again. Add your name. " (Avaaz )
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Don’t let all the work we have put into environmental protections since the 1970’s be gutted. Stand up for our absolute right to have a healthy, thriving life support system—our environment. There is no ‘balance’ between industrial rights and humanity’s fundamental right to clean water, air, and land. The silent majority must awake from what is being done to our EPA. Stop the Attacks on Our Environment and Health: Save The EPA! To be delivered to: New York and Connecticut Congressional Delegation The President has proposed to slash the EPA budget, eliminate funding for programs to restore the Great Lakes and Long Island Sound, and cut programs to fight climate change. This would decimate EPA's ability to address a broad range of its responsibilities and put our environment, health, and economy at an unacceptable risk! I urge Congress to provide full funding for the EPA and critical programs that it administers, including the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Long Island Sound restoration, and efforts to fight climate change. (from Citizens Campaign for the Environment)
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Got bike? Got an old bike not being used? Why not donate that bike to R Community Bikes (RCB) and help others get around—without carbon emissions. Action Transportation (walking and bicycling) is increasing in Rochester and you can help get our city more climate friendly. Find out more about BikeRochester and our city’s draft Climate Action Plan that we are still waiting for passage.
  • ACTION: Due Date: Now!
    • I think it proper to now distinguish Pruitt’s epa from the former U.S. EPA, which used to be a respectable federal agency  CONDEMN TRUMP’S ATTACKS ON THE EPA Trump and his Republicans want to weaken the EPA. Say you won't stand for it: here.
  • ACTION: Due Date: Now!
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Great local effort to grow our renewable energy supply. Find out more and how you can get involved: Click here to learn more about RPCC’s Community Choice Aggregation Project! "The Rochester People’s Climate Coalition is pursuing the development of Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) as a way to use the market to grow our local renewable supply.  We began exploring this issue in September 2015 and formed a committee on CCA in December.  Our committee members have begun meeting with governmental leaders to inform them of this policy option. " Rochester People's Climate Coalition
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • From our friends over at the Rochester People’s Climate Coalition: Climate Friendly Food Choices |”Food Choices are extremely important for anyone who wants to take climate change action because: Food Choices have a profound effect on greenhouse gas emissions (one study shows as much as 51%). Food Choices are amongst the easiest changes that make a huge difference—the biggest bang for our individual buck.” Find out more about this issue and contact RPCC to see how you can help this issue locally. More on Food in our area.
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Consider stopping wasteful phone books that littler our neighborhoods and no longer provide a useful service by surfing over here: Department of Public of Service, Comment Form using this case number 17-C-0013. Back in the day, our Rochester Sierra Club Zero Waste Committee tried to halt the delivery of these phone books with little effect. That now the phone company admits that this is a 12-tons-of-waste each year that can be avoided is interesting. Our group noticed over the years how phone books were tossed on to apartment complex porches’ and left for months there while folks just walked over them, avoiding them completely. And for many, many people the phone books would go immediately into the recycling bin—at best. At worst, folks threw them into the trash or let them scattered throughout the neighborhoods. We were told by the powers that be that although many people don’t use these books the advertising dollars that came from the phone books were too important. Now, finally, after long last, phone books are on the way out because they waste paper and aren’t needed. Which has been the case for years. Consider putting the nail this this wasteful coffin by surfing over here: Department of Public of Service, Comment Form using this case number 17-C-0013. More: Phone books to disappear for good The phone book, a one-time necessity that many now consider a wasteful nuisance, is about to disappear from your life forever. Frontier Communications, which provides landline phone service in the Rochester area and some other areas in New York, has asked state regulators for permission to end mass delivery of phone books to its customers. The books contain business listings, government contact information and consumer information. (February 1, 2017) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on Recycling in our area]
  • ACTION due date: NOW!
    • Winds of Change by @revkin on Twitter, on Facebook  , or by email on ProPublica is a great way to “to keep track of subsequent changes on federal websites as the Trump administration settles in.” We must remain vigilant on making use our climate science is not being hijacked by ideology in these troublesome times. Much of the public’s and the media’s information on Climate Change comes from federal websites so you’re help is needed in tracking any wavering from the climate facts we need in order to have a sustainable life support system. Help Us Track Winds of Change as Trump Confronts Climate Issues If you see something, say something. ProPublica is eager to get tips on shifts in available government information related to climate change. Until late morning on Friday, the White House homepage had an “issues” link to a page on the environment touting former President Obama’s efforts to build a “clean-energy economy” and tackle climate change. It’s still viewable via archive.org, but almost as soon as President Donald J. Trump’s hand was off the Bible, White House websites flipped to content consistent with Trump’s campaign pledges to roll back such programs. The live White House homepage now reflects President Donald J. Trump’s agenda, including a link to his energy plan, which includes “eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan” of his predecessor. (January 20, 2017) ProPublica [more on Climate Change in our area]
  • ACTION: Due Date Now!
    • Act on giving bicyclists a 3-ft break from vehicles, making biking safer, and reducing greenhouse gases. 3 FT PASSING LAW Thanks to the strong leadership of Board President Jim Reed and Board Member Emeritus Ivan Vamos, who himself was hit by a car, and support from Transportation Alternatives, the New York Bicycling Coalition (NYBC) has launched an all-out campaign this legislative session in Albany to amend the vague and impossible to enforce 2010 Safe Passing law. At the very least, we think there should be a 3 feet passing standard, which is now the law in 26 other states across the country. Email your legislators now by sending an email through this very easy-to-use form.
  • ACTION: Due Date: Now!
    • Stop Explosive Oil Trains! Find out if you are in the blast zone and sign the petition. There is a fiftyfold increase in local transport of volatile crude oil trains (which are not and cannot be properly designed to carry this dangerous oil) through our region. Check to see if you are in the blast zone, and Take action and put a stop to this! From our friends over at Mothers Out Front! Really take a moment to find out about this clean and present danger in our community and take action here.
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • "Call on Governor Cuomo and The Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx to take immediate action to protect the public and the environment from the dangers of crude-by-rail." Stop the Bomb Trains "As much as 7 billion gallons of crude oil could move by train through New York State annually under current and proposed permits as the nation’s “virtual pipeline” for crude oil expands. The Department of Transportation can take immediate action to reduce the risks of derailments, which have caused catastrophic spills of crude oil elsewhere in the United States and Canada, including the tragic loss last year of 47 lives and the destruction of a business district in Lac-Megantic, Quebec. The volatility of Bakken crude oil combined with the inadequacy of the DOT-111 railcars used to transport much of this cargo has led rail workers to dub them "bomb trains." Spills of heavy crudes, such as those from Alberta, Canada, tar sands, would have particularly damaging impacts to water and the ecosystems they support – because heavy crude oils can sink, clean-up is next to impossible. " Riverkeeper
  • ACTION:  Due Date: Now!
    • New York needs to transition to renewable energy (like Wind Power) now:  "New York has been slow out of the gate when it comes to opportunities like offshore wind. We can change that. Few states have the potential to be a national and global clean energy and climate leader like New York.  And right now, the state Public Service Commission (PSC) is accepting public comments on how to structure a new Large Scale Renewable Energy Program – and Environmental Advocates is urging the PSC to act on three critical fronts: Establish enforcement mechanisms to hold the state and utilities accountable for supplying 50 percent of our energy from clean renewables by 2030. Make the state’s Large Scale Renewables Program statewide (currently Long Island is excluded from the Renewable Portfolio Standard). Add offshore wind power to New York’s energy mix.  You can urge them to prioritize these initiatives, too!     Despite our state being home to some of the most attractive and productive wind farm locations in the nation, this plentiful source of renewable energy remains completely untapped. With Rhode Island constructing the nation’s first offshore wind farm, and Europe utilizing this same renewable energy source on a large scale, New York can step up and become a global clean energy leader.     Governor Cuomo has made a commitment to ensure 50 percent of our energy comes from clean, renewable sources by 2030. That means dramatically reducing our reliance on fossil fuels and building a clean, green energy economy with offshore wind and other sources of renewable energy.    Take Action Today! " (from Environmental Advocates of New York)
  • ACTION: Due Date, NOW!
    • Fracking ain't over in New York until it's over: Take action: Call on the NYS Senate and Assembly to ACT NOW to pass the Hazardous Waste Loophole Bill! Read more: Time to Close New York’s Fracking Waste Loophole Despite the recent historic ban on high-volume fracking, New York still has a fracking waste problem. More than 510,000 tons and 23,000 barrels – and counting – of waste from oil and gas extraction operations in neighboring Pennsylvania have been shipped to New York landfills for disposal. Leachate from those landfills is then sent to nearby wastewater treatment facilities. And New York State continues to allow the use of certain kinds of waste from low-volume oil and gas extraction on our roads for de-icing and dust control. Fracking waste can contain a number of pollutants, such as chemicals, metals, excess salts, and carcinogens like benzene and naturally-occurring radioactive materials. Due to a loophole in state law, oil and gas industry waste is exempt from hazardous waste requirements, meaning that – no matter what it contains – fracking waste is not classified as hazardous. This “hazardous waste loophole” also means that fracking waste can be disposed of at facilities unequipped to handle it, and in ways that can put our health and environment at risk. (June 3, 2015) Riverkeeper [more on Fracking in our area]
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Submit letters to the Democrat and Chronicle Editors about oil trains passing thru Rochester and gas storage in the Seneca Lake salt mines concerns: Editorial submissions
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Pound for pound, getting community leaders to pledge to the state’s ‘Climate Smart Communities’ program is one of the most effective things people can do to address Climate Change. Take action! It’s all spelled out for you here: Take Action on 'Climate Smart Communities': New York State's Climate Smart Communities (CSC) program supports municipalities as they identify, plan and carry out projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, promote energy efficiency and renewable energy sources, and prepare for the challenges climate change will bring. This program provides resources that enable localities to act on climate, without mandating which programs or policies they should adopt. 
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Interested in the water quality of our rivers and streams and want to get trained to help monitor them?  "Reminder -- Volunteers for Stream and River Monitoring Wanted: DEC is looking for citizen scientist volunteers for stream and river monitoring as part of the Water Assessments by Volunteer Evaluators (WAVE) project. Volunteers visit stream sites once between July and September to collect macroinvertebrates -- insects and other small organisms -- from the rocks and rubble on the stream bottom.  In 2014, volunteers can participate by joining a local WAVE group led by a trained local coordinator, or by sampling independently. Volunteers working under a trained local coordinator do not need to attend a training session; however, volunteers who want to work independently must attend a training session.  WAVE training sessions rotate around the state on a five-year schedule, targeting those basins that will be sampled by DEC's Stream Biomonitoring Unit the following year.  Three training sessions remain for 2014: June 14 in Esperance, June 21 in Wyoming and June 29 in New Hartford. " (June 13, 2014) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) 
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW! 
    • Chance to volunteer and help largest wetland in Northeast. "Montezuma Audubon Center Seeks Volunteers   Savannah, NY - September 20 - The Montezuma Audubon Center (MAC), located at 2295 State Route 89 in Savannah, is seeking volunteers to strengthen the current staff’s ability to fulfill Audubon’s mission in conservation.  The MAC is dedicated toward providing opportunities for youth, families, and communities to connect to conservation and enhance the Montezuma Wetlands Complex as an Important Bird Area. We are looking for volunteers interested in routinely supporting day to day needs as an information desk receptionist, animal caretaker for our live reptiles and amphibians, and office supporter to help with clerical tasks. Please call Chris Lajewski at 315-365-3588 or e-mail montezuma@audubon.org for more information or to sign up today! "
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Thinking it’s about time to do something on a big scale to combat Climate Change?  Think about joining Citizen’s Climate Lobby.  Here’s what Dr. James Hansen, head of Goddard Institute for Space Studies, NASA say’s "Most impressive is the work of Citizens Climate Lobby, a relatively new, fastgrowing, nonpartisan, nonprofit group with 60 chapters across the United States and Canada. If you want to join the fight to save the planet, to save creation for your grandchildren, there is no more effective step you could take than becoming an active member of this group." The contact information for the local Rochester group: nyrochester@citizensclimatelobby.org We meet monthly, and people can contact us for more info on getting involved!
  • ACTION: Due Date: NOW!
    • Can you imagine what our world would look like if everyone used their smartphones to report environmental crimes? Healthier! Become an environmental crime stopper Polluting a stream and getting away with it? Violating the Clean Air Act without detection? Now, anyone with a smartphone can help bust abusers of the environment. New York State Crime Stoppers announced a new phone app that makes it very easy for people to instantly report environmental crimes to the appropriate agency. Cellfare created the app in collaboration with Crime Stoppers, Waterkeeper Alliance, state police and local law enforcement agencies across the state. (November 21, 2012) Investigative Post

 

 

 

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  • My COMMENTS are in Bold text:

  • 11/20/2017 - Toxic algae blooms are a growing threat to our region’s water quality and lake ecosystems and greatly impacted by Climate Change. Our growing toxic algae problem needs to be addressed as a Climate Change problem. This statement from the article below must instill a sense of urgency of addressing Climate Change locally. The South is being woken up to Climate Change with its extreme hurricanes; these toxic algae blooms are our wake-up call: “Within the past decade, outbreaks have been reported in every state, a trend likely to accelerate as climate change boosts water temperatures.” Toxic Algae: Once A Nuisance, Now A Severe Nationwide Threat He recovered, but Lake Erie hasn’t. Nor have other waterways choked with algae that’s sickening people, killing animals and hammering the economy. The scourge is escalating from occasional nuisance to severe, widespread hazard, overwhelming government efforts to curb a leading cause: fertilizer runoff from farms. Pungent, sometimes toxic blobs are fouling waterways from the Great Lakes to Chesapeake Bay, from the Snake River in Idaho to New York’s Finger Lakes and reservoirs in California’s Central Valley. (November 19, 2017) The Post-Journal [more on Water Quality in our area]

  • 11/20/2017 - Got friends (maybe even a president) that don’t believe in Climate Change is happening and is human caused? Watch is short (5:31) from the UN climate change conference COP23 and then distribute widely to those we still need to convince. Time passes. Busting climate myths Know any climate change deniers? Here are some of the most common myths and misconceptions they use — debunked and busted by high-profile climate leaders at the UN climate change conference COP23. (November 17, 2017) Deutsche Welle [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/20/2017 - How will Climate Change affect our region’s Lake Effect Snow season? One of the great known unknowns in our region is that we may or may not have a lot of heavy lake-effect snows, with incredible amounts of snow. Our Great Lakes region is known for this phenomenon. Climate Change appears to be even changing the changes even within this very changeable weather pattern. Towards the end of this century, it’s looking like there will be more precipitation falling as rain, not snow. However you view this jagged trend (see graph), it should impress upon you that Climate Change is already and will continue to have a dramatic effect on our region’s winters. It also means we need to plan. Time passes. Lake Effect Snow Season is Shifting and Contracting Arctic air begins to race across the relatively milder water of the Great Lakes every fall, generating lake effect snow. These snowfalls can be intense, but are often localized. Several inches of snow can fall a few miles away from a place that only gets flurries. As the planet has warmed from the increase in greenhouse gases, so have the lakes, meaning more evaporation into the atmosphere during the winter. Paradoxically, this had led to an increase in lake effect snow, but that trend is not expected to last. A recent study used a regional climate model to investigate these changes in lake effect snow if our current rate of greenhouse gas emissions continues. By mid-century, the amount of seasonal lake effect snow is projected to increase modestly, as the Great Lakes will remain ice-free longer into the winter. However, as the air warms, the amount of snow during the transitional seasons of late fall and early spring is expected to decrease, with more of the precipitation falling as rain. (November 15, 2017) Climate Central [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/18/2017 - There are many reasons why we should not continue to set the table for fossil fuels as Climate Change gets worse, major oil spills are one. Trying to build more fossil fuel infrastructure as our planet warms will continue to hijack our attention, our money, and our environment if we don’t stop cold and move towards renewable energy. Time passes. Keystone Pipeline Leaks 210,000 Gallons of Oil in South Dakota About 5,000 barrels of oil, or about 210,000 gallons, gushed out of the Keystone Pipeline on Thursday in South Dakota, blackening a grassy field in the remote northeast part of the state and sending cleanup crews and emergency workers scrambling to the site. “This is not a little spill from any perspective,” said Kim McIntosh, an environmental scientist with the South Dakota Department of Environment and Natural Resources. No livestock or drinking water sources appeared to be threatened, Ms. McIntosh said, and no farm buildings or houses are within a mile. The spill, near Amherst, S.D., comes just days before regulators in neighboring Nebraska decide whether to grant the final permit needed to begin construction on a different pipeline proposal, the Keystone XL, which would be operated by the same company. An announcement in Nebraska is expected on Monday. (November 16, 2017) The New York Times [more on Energy in our area]

  • 11/18/2017 - The Trump administration’s positions at the COP23 climate talks were an embarrassment to our great country. If the world will be patient with us, we’ll get our senses back. 'Tobacco at a cancer summit': Trump coal push savaged at climate conference The US administration’s attempt to portray fossil fuels as vital to reducing poverty and saving US jobs is ridiculed in Bonn The Trump team was heckled and interrupted by a protest song at the UN’s climate change summit in Bonn on Monday after using its only official appearance to say fossil fuels were vital to reducing poverty around the world and to saving jobs in the US. While Donald Trump’s special adviser on energy and environment, David Banks, said cutting emissions was a US priority, “energy security, economic prosperity are higher priorities”, he said. “The president has a responsibility to protect jobs and industry across the country.” Other attendees at the summit condemned the argument. (November 13, 2017) The Guardian [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/18/2017 - Looks like Trump administration is losing both science and moral arguments on Climate Change, arguments climate deniers have long lost. Their intransigence threatens us all. Time passes. Pope Francis Blasts ‘Perverse Attitudes’ Of Climate Change Deniers The U.S. remains the only country in the world to reject the Paris climate agreement. Pope Francis is once again proving he has absolutely zero patience for climate change deniers.  Climate change is “one of the most worrying phenomena our humanity is experiencing,” the pontiff wrote Thursday in a letter sent to world leaders gathered for the United Nations’ annual climate change conference. He also warned participants against falling prey to certain “perverse” attitudes on the issue, including denial, indifference and resignation. Such attitudes “certainly do not help honest research or sincere and productive dialogue on building the future of our planet,” Francis wrote, according to a translation provided by Vatican Radio. “We need an exchange that unites us all, because the environmental challenge we are experiencing, and its human roots, regards us all, and affects us all.” (November 17, 2017) Huffington Post [more on Cliamte Change in our area]

  • 11/18/2017 - At the close of the COP23 climate talks in Bonn the world agrees on Climate Change—that Trump’s way is wrong. Be nice if Trump listened to scientists and world leaders. Climate talks close with Trump administration on one track, world on another The world climate conference ended Friday much the way it began two weeks ago — with the Trump administration bolstering legacy fuels like coal and gas, separating itself from much of the world. The lone panel sponsored by the U.S. government was interrupted by singing and chanting protesters, who said support for coal power went against the thrust of talks centered on promoting renewable energy and 21st century technology. The result was a fundamental disconnect at the gathering in Bonn, Germany. “California is not waiting for Trump,” Gov. Jerry Brown told some of the 20,000 attendees. "We are not waiting for all the deniers, we are committing ourselves to do everything possible to get on the side of nature instead of fighting it, to deal with the climate change challenge in a real way." (November 17, 2018) NBC News [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/17/2017 - It looks that Climate Change is playing an important role in the worsening algae plague in our lakes. Our media fails us when they fail to mention the possible role of Climate Change as making these harmful algae blooms more likely. Consider pressing your press to connect the dots with more harmful algae bloom and Climate Change so we can actually address this growing problem with all the factors—which will also keep the public informed that Climate Change is already greatly influencing our region. Time passes. A look at farm runoff and the worsening algae plague Harmful algae blooms have become a top water polluter, fueled by fertilizers washing into lakes, streams and oceans. Federal and state programs have spent billions of dollars on cost-sharing payments to farmers to help prevent nutrient runoff, yet the problem is worsening in many places. Here's a look at the algae menace and what's being done: IS CLIMATE CHANGE BEHIND THIS? Many scientists believe global warming is making conditions more favorable for algae blooms, primarily by raising water temperatures and causing heavier rainstorms that wash more nutrients into waterways. (November 16, 2017) ST. Louis Post-Dispatch [more on Water Quality and Cimate Change in our area]

  • 11/17/2017 - Climate Change is affecting and will keep affecting our weather and climate around the Great Lakes. Be nice if our media began to see our weather in this longer context, which is necessary in a warming world. To be properly informed by our media so we can plan for our future at all levels—buildings, infrastructures, real estate, businesses, housing, and much more—we need a media that continually reports on the changes coming so we can adapt. Our media needs to rethink its priorities and how it reports on them. Time passes. Global Warming’s Impact on Lake Effect Snow: Fewer Flurries, More Rain Lake Michigan is getting warmer, and eventually it will mean winters with less snow in Chicago. But don’t plan yet for winters free of the white stuff. According to a recent study by climate scientists at the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Nelson Institute Center for Climactic Research, lake effect snow will continue to make modest increases over the next few decades. But in the late 21st century, as the air continues to warm, the amount of lake effect snow from the Great Lakes is expected to decrease, with more of the precipitation falling as rain. Like other weather events, lake effect snow has been impacted by the warming of the planet from an increase in greenhouse gases. Rising global temperatures have made lakes warmer, too, causing more evaporation into the atmosphere during the winter. The result has been an increase in the amount of lake effect snow, which in this region occurs when cold arctic air blows across the relatively milder water of the Great Lakes. (November 25, 2017) WTTW Chicago Tonight [more on Climate Change and Great Lakes in our area] 

  • 11/17/2017 -   Do you live in America and are you worried by global warming? More than likely your friends and acquaintances are. Climate Change in the American Mind: October 2017 Our most recent nationally representative survey finds that the number of Americans “very worried” about global warming has reached a record high (22%) since first measured in 2008. A majority of Americans (63%) say they are “very” or “somewhat” worried about the issue. Likewise, Americans increasingly view global warming as a threat. Since Spring 2015, more Americans think it will harm them personally (50%, +14 points), their own family (54%, +13 points), people in the U.S. (67%, +18 points), people in developing countries (71%, +18 points), and future generations (75%, +12 points). Nearly two in three Americans (64%) think global warming is affecting weather in the United States, and one in three think weather is being affected “a lot” (33%), an increase of 8 percentage points since May 2017. (November 16, 2017) Yale Program on Climate Change Communication [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/17/2017 - The Rochester People’s Climate Coalition (RPCC) has become the largest and most influential umbrella organization with over 120-member organizations to address Climate Change in our region. Consider helping them with their efforts by donating "RPCC is now a 501c3 organization, which allows RPCC to accept donations that are tax deductible for the donor! If you've been looking for a way to get involved in climate action, but don't have much time to spare, this could be the opportunity for you!  Your donations are greatly appreciated! Use the Donate button above, or look for it on our website: rocpcc.org. "

  • 11/17/2017 - New York State officially banned Fracking on June 29, 2015 because of potential threats to our drinking water. Why didn’t other states follow suit? Interesting story. Industrial Strength: How the U.S. Government Hid Fracking's Risks to Drinking Water A pivotal EPA study provided the rationale for exemptions that helped unleash the fracking boom. The science was suppressed to protect industry interests. For Latkanich and all those who believe their water has been tainted by fracking, there are few remedies. Congress took away the most powerful one in 2005, prohibiting the Environmental Protection Agency from safeguarding drinking water that might be harmed by fracking and even denying the regulator the authority to find out what chemicals companies use. That provision of the Energy Policy Act was justified by an EPA study about fracking into coalbed methane reservoirs, completed under the George W. Bush administration, that concluded that fracking posed no risk to drinking water. Concerns about the study emerged from the outset, including a 2004 whistleblower complaint that called it "scientifically unsound." Now, InsideClimate News has learned that the scientists who wrote the report disagreed with the conclusion imposed by the Bush EPA, saying there was not enough evidence to support it. The authors, who worked for a government contractor, went so far as to have their company's name and their own removed from the final document. (November 16, 2017) Inside Climate News [more on Fracking in our area]

  • 11/17/2017 - Satellites like these are going to be crucial feedback as we try and survive in our warming world. Back in the day, back when our numbers were much fewer and we needed less infrastructure to exist, we didn’t need eyes in the sky tracking changes we make to our environment around the globe. Now, these monitoring satellites are a necessary part of our existence. Do we have enough of them? What measurements might we be missing in order to track the health of our planet? We are now dependent on instruments like these. Time passes. This new satellite could produce the most accurate weather predictions yet Now that’s science we can all get behind! The Joint Polar Satellite System-1, a joint project of NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is scheduled to launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base near Lompoc, Calif., at 1:47 a.m. Wednesday. Once JPSS-1 makes it into orbit, its suite of five state-of-the-art instruments will collect the most high-resolution observations yet of our planet’s atmosphere, land and oceans, NOAA officials said. “These instruments are so precise that they can measure temperatures to better than one-tenth of a degree in the entire atmosphere, from the Earth’s surface up to the edge of space,” said Greg Mandt, director of the JPSS program for NOAA. (November 14, 2017) Los Angeles Times [mmore on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/16/2017 - Since US feds have forfeited its leadership role in addressing Climate Change, others are filling that gap. As for the rest of us Americans, #WeAreStillin. Macron: France will replace US funding for UN climate science French president said Europe must step into the leadership role the US had abandoned, while Angela Merkel struggled with Germany’s political uncertainty French president Emmanuel Macron sent a pulse of excitement racing through the Bonn climate summit with a speech seizing the mantle of climate leadership from the US. In an address to a conference charged with writing the rules of the deal struck in Paris in 2015, Macron promised to replace the $2 million annual donation withdrawn by the US from the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). (November 15, 2017) Cimate Home [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/16/2017 - While Trump Administration pushes for more fossil fuel at COP23 in Bonn, our country is warming up right now because of fossil fuels. Sad. Climate Change Is Happening in the U.S. Now, Federal Report Says — in Charts The National Climate Assessment shows rising global temperatures are having ripple effects across the environment our economy was built on. For decades, the world has been told that the climate is changing—that the build-up of fossil fuel-driven greenhouse gas emissions would irrevocably change the Earth's systems. Those changes are already happening across the United States, the newest volume of the National Climate Assessment says. The exhaustive report, written by scientists and released Friday by 13 federal agencies (and, to the surprise of some, signed off on by the Trump Administration), also clearly states that humans have directly contributed to the warming of the globe. "This period is now the warmest in the history of modern civilization," the report's authors wrote. (November 7, 2017) Inside Climate News [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/16/2017 - The fossil fuels that warm our planet warm the whole planet; but regions are affected differently and the health effects of using fossil fuels are even more disproportional. African-Americans taking brunt of oil industry pollution: report African-Americans face a disproportionate risk of health problems from pollution caused by the oil and gas industry, and the situation could worsen as President Donald Trump dismantles environmental regulations, according to a report issued on Tuesday by a pair of advocacy groups. The report, issued by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People civil rights group and the Clean Air Task Force, said more than a million African-Americans live within half a mile (0.8 km) of an oil and gas operation, and more than 6.7 million live in a county that is home to a refinery. (November 14, 2017) Reuters [more on Air Quality and Climate Change and Energy in our area]

  • 11/16/2017 - Are we prepared for more ‘Biblical’ storms? Harvey’s ‘Biblical’ rainfall is getting more likely The chances of a hurricane flooding parts of Texas, like Harvey did, have soared sixfold in just 25 years because of global warming and will likely triple once again before the end of the century, a new study says. Study author Kerry Emanuel, a meteorology professor and hurricane expert at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, found that what was once an extremely rare event — 20 inches of rain over a large area of Texas — could soon be almost common. From 1981 to 2000, the probability of 20 inches of rain happening somewhere over a large chunk of Texas was 1 in 100 or even less, Emanuel said. Now it’s 6 in 100 and by 2081, those odds will be 18 in 100, he said. “The changes in probabilities are because of global warming,” Emanuel said. The study was released Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. (November 13, 2017) AP News [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/16/2017 - The New York Time full coverage of the COP23 Bonn climate talks: The Bonn Climate Conference: All Our Coverage in One Place 

  • 11/16/2017 - ACTION: Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd. PUBLIC MEETING Monday NOV 20 Brighton - Plan to clear cut major sections of the Erie Canal | In the Great Lakes Watershed - Proposed Plan for Clearcutting trees from earthen berms of the Erie Canal:   PUBLIC MEETING Monday, November 20, 2017 6pm: Open House Format: people at displays to answer questions, written public input collected, no formal presentations.   The meeting is slated for 6 p.m. Nov. 20 in the clubhouse of The Reserve on the Erie Canal housing complex, at 1 Reserve View Blvd.   Did you see that NYS Canal Corporation is planning to clear cut trees and grind out stumps and replace with mowed grass to stabilize the earthen berms along the sections of the Erie Canal where the canal is above grade and walled by earthen berms?  Reason: According to FEMA, woody roots destabilize earthen dams/berms and make it more likely to leak, burst or fail in very wet, heavy rain conditions.  Recall 1972 Bushnell's Basin canal breach during very wet season.   (See attached FEMA doc and D&C news article.)  This activity will remove big areas of wooded & diverse wildlife habitat and be boring, hot, sunny and exposed, with the increased expense and pollutants of mowing a boring grass lawn instead of a beautify canopy of trees sequestering excess carbon from the atmosphere and creating a long wildlife migration corridor along the canal...   ... unless a possible alternate plan can be adopted, such as: to replace the trees with diverse native plants to intentionally create a native grassy meadow habitat home to bluebird, butterfly and other wildlife populations that can be mowed just once a year or two to prevent woody plants from taking over. 

  • 11/15/2017 - Was last spring’s Lake Ontario flooding due to abnormally heavy rainfall because of Climate Change, or a bad Plan 2014? We’ll probably never know because we aren’t listening to the scientists and this issue has gotten political—which is to say it’s another environmental issue that’s been hijacked. Regulators blamed for flooding on Lake Ontario Sen. Pam Helming says lake-level plan failed, caused historic flooding along Lake Ontario shoreline While scientists say nothing could have prevented the historic flooding this year along Lake Ontario, politicians blame regulators. At a public hearing last week, state Sen. Pam Helming, R-Canandaigua, blamed lake-level managers for flooding this spring along the lake and the St. Lawrence River. Helming was one of four state senators and six Assembly members on a panel Thursday to hear concerns and question authorities at the hearing at Wayne Central High School in Ontario, Wayne County. More than 150 people attended. (November 13, 2017) Daily Messenger [more on Water Quality and Great Lakes in our area]

  • 11/15/2017 - News about our Air Quality from the NYS DEC: Air Mail: News About NY Air Quality This Week’s Topics: A Bit of Air History 1966 Thanksgiving Day Smog New York Recycles Day (November 14, 2017) Department of Environmental Conservation

  • 11/15/2017 - This looks like a great project to help get communities in the Great Lakes basin get their water infrastructure up to snuff for Climate Change. Check it out: Great Lakes Water Infrastructure Project “Analyzing and Proposing Solutions to Water Infrastructure Failures in Great Lakes Cities It could cost Great Lakes states $200 billion over the next 20 years to bring drinking and wastewater infrastructure to a state of good repair. One of the primary drivers of sky-rocketing infrastructure investment needs is a history of low investment. The vast majority of water supply and wastewater infrastructure was installed in the early 20th century and is over 100 years old. To add fuel to the fire, increased federal regulations, climatic stressors, and rising construction costs all exacerbate the level of infrastructure investment needed.” (from CNT)

  • 11/15/2017 - Many folks keep including natural gas as an important component of our clean energy future. Why? It’s a fossil fuel. 100% renewable energy doesn’t include natural gas.  It’s not a ‘bridge’ fuel if fossil fuels are running through it. Natural gas has no climate benefit and may make things worse Methane leaks in New Mexico's oil and gas industry equal 12 coal-fired power plants. The evidence is overwhelming that natural gas has no net climate benefit in any timescale that matters to humanity. In fact, a shocking new study concludes that just the methane emissions escaping from New Mexico’s gas and oil industry are “equivalent to the climate impact of approximately 12 coal-fired power plants.” If the goal is to avoid catastrophic levels of warming, a recent report by U.K. climate researchers finds “categorically no role” to play for new natural gas production. (November 13, 2017) Think Progress [more on Energy and Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/15/2017 - Get full coverage of the COP23 Bonn, Germany climate talks from Democracy Now!

  • 11/14/2017 - Our opportunity to address Climate Change on a scale and time frame that will matter is running out. Don’t just take my word for it. But it does seem amazing that in the USA this message by so many scientists can’t be heard because so many American minds have been polluted, blinded, and averted by politics and so many other non-reasons. What’s the point of having scientists if we aren’t going to listen to them? (Are people thinking that if they blind themselves to a warming world the world will warm no more, the oceans will recede, and they’ll somehow win a struggle to have the future they want—even though it flys in the face or reality?) Time passes. 15,000 scientists give catastrophic warning about the fate of the world in new ‘letter to humanity’ 'Time is running out' A new, dire "warning to humanity" about the dangers to all of us has been written by 15,000 scientists from around the world. The message updates an original warning sent from the Union of Concerned Scientists that was backed by 1,700 signatures 25 years ago. But the experts say the picture is far, far worse than it was in 1992, and that almost all of the problems identified then have simply been exacerbated. Mankind is still facing the existential threat of runaway consumption of limited resources by a rapidly growing population, they warn. And "scientists, media influencers and lay citizens" aren't doing enough to fight against it, according to the letter. (November 13, 2017) Independant [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/14/2017 - This message that Heartland Institute wants to be heard at COP23 is wrong, immoral, unscientific, greed-ridden, sows doubt, brazen, hubristic, out-of-touch, craven, dangerous, and downright looney: “Jim Lakely, a spokesman for the Heartland Institute, said he hoped United Nations climate delegates would also hear his group’s message. “Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant and it is not the driver of global warming,” he said. “So there is no moral case for restricting the use of fossil fuels, especially because that is vital to raising the quality and length of life of the world’s poorest people.” A Shadow Delegation Stalks the Official U.S. Team at Climate Talks BONN, Germany — The office of the official American delegation at the international climate talks here is almost always closed. A sign taped to the door informs the curious that entry is for authorized staff members only. But there’s another group of Americans who are happy to be found. They are gathered in a nearly 27,000-square-foot inflatable tent adorned with American flags and red, white and blue signs proclaiming that states, cities and businesses are “still in” the Paris agreement, despite President Trump’s vow to leave it. The alternate American pavilion, with its free espresso truck, tins of themed M&M’s and wireless internet that tells new users “the U.S. has not gone dark on climate action,” has rapidly become a hub of activity at the United Nations global warming negotiations taking place this week. On Saturday, a line of people waited in the rain to hear Michael R. Bloomberg, the former mayor of New York, Gov. Jerry Brown of California and a handful of United States senators, all Democrats, declare that much of America remains committed to reducing planet-warming carbon dioxide emissions. (November 11, 2017) The New York Times [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/14/2017 - Trump team attempts to push the advantages of fossil fuel at COP23 don’t work with a world trying to get off this old, polluting energy. Trump team lauds fossil fuels at climate summit, met with protests A Trump administration attempt to offer fossil fuels as a solution to climate change was subject to protest and walkouts on Monday at U.N. climate talks in Bonn. Representatives of the fossil fuel industry said they wanted to be part of the conversation and sat through intense questioning and heckling from media and protesters in the room. The bitterness that has divided the U.S. since the election of Donald Trump arrived in Bonn, when around a hundred mostly American climate protestors disrupted the event, with song, heckling and protest banners. (November 13, 2017) Mashable [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/13/2017 - What role does climate denial play in our ability to adapt to and mitigate Climate Change? The answer won’t surprise you. How do we move forward on this worldwide crisis? Dr. Michael Mann on Climate Denial: 'It’s Impaired Our Ability to Move Forward' Last month, Climate Reality chatted with world-renowned climatologist and geophysicist Dr. Michael E. Mann, distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Penn State University, ahead of our recent Climate Reality Leadership Corps training in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Below, Dr. Mann discusses why he thinks, despite the evidence of climate change all around us, we haven't reached a tipping point in the culture as well as what he'd say to climate deniers. Climate Reality: We see these impacts—these hurricanes, these droughts and heatwaves, and so much more—but among those not there on the ground, well, some still think of climate change as a far-off problem. How do we change that? (November 10, 2017) EcoWatch [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • Comfort Zone: A documentary exploring climate change in upstate New York” | Is climate change a scientific problem? An engineering problem? A psychological problem? All that, and more? COMFORT ZONE takes an in-depth look at what happens when global climate issues come to our backyards. The specific setting is Upstate New York, but the effects, both subtle and profound, illustrate the kinds of effects that can happen anywhere  We encourage you to screen the film with as many people as possible. Please contact us if you need help setting up or promoting a screening, or would like us to attend. Below are some tools and advice to help you have the most successful screening possible. You can also use this flyer to share information about the film with people who might want to collaborate on a screening.

  • 11/13/2017 - Our infrastructure, like that which brings us our drinking water, is old and crumbling and needs to be updated quickly for a warming world. How do we do that and what are the best materials? How do we regulate all that and keep drinking water clean and healthy? With over seven billion of us, our infrastructures are a vital part of our existence. If we are to adapt to Climate Change our infrastructures—energy, water, waste, telecommunications, transportation, and more—all need to be ready for more heat and extreme weather and everything else that comes with warming a planet quickly with a lot of beings on it. Time passes. $300 Billion War Beneath the Street: Fighting to Replace America’s Water Pipes Bursting pipes. Leaks. Public health scares. America is facing a crisis over its crumbling water infrastructure, and fixing it will be a monumental and expensive task. Two powerful industries, plastic and iron, are locked in a lobbying war over the estimated $300 billion that local governments will spend on water and sewer pipes over the next decade. It is a battle of titans, raging just inches beneath our feet. “Things are moving so fast,” said Reese Tisdale, president of the water advisory firm Bluefield Research. And it’s a good thing, he says: “There are some pipes in the ground that are 150 years old.” How the pipe wars play out — in city and town councils, in state capitals, in Washington — will determine how drinking water is delivered to homes across America for generations to come. Traditional materials like iron or steel currently make up almost two-thirds of existing municipal water pipe infrastructure. But over the next decade, as much as 80 percent of new municipal investment in water pipes could be spent on plastic pipes, Bluefield predicts. (November 10, 2017) The New York Times [more on Water Quality and Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/11/2017 - Only the Trump administration dismisses Climate Change action and science, the rest of US are in. U.S. Cities and States Try to Keep Washington’s Climate Promises Mayors, governors and CEOs tell world leaders the Trump administration does not speak for them A giant star-spangled pavilion sits outside the formal negotiating area for the U.N. climate meeting in Bonn, Germany, which began this Monday. American-accented English dominates the potpourri of languages there, and power-suited representatives from U.S. cities, states and businesses mingle with their foreign counterparts. Above it all hangs a giant banner with a hashtagged slogan: #We Are Still In. The “We” is Americans, and what they are still “In” is the 2015 Paris climate agreement. Not officially—earlier this year, Pres. Donald Trump announced he would withdraw the U.S. from its Paris commitments—but in intent. The pavilion is the home base for an alliance of more than 2,500 leaders from America’s cities, states, businesses, universities, faith organizations, tribes and other groups. Stymied by the slow pace of the negotiations—which they are not even allowed to participate in—these so-called “subnationals” have worked on the sidelines for years, using political will, economic leverage and the celebrity status of prominent politicians to advance their climate goals. Now Trump's presidency has galvanized subnational leaders, who want to uphold the U.S.’ Paris pledge to cut its emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. Their ambitious plan for this year’s meeting: Convince the rest of the world they can keep the promises their president abandoned. (November 9, 2017) Scientific American [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/11/2017 - The more scientists learn about Climate Change the more they learn how sensitive Earth and our bodies are to heat. When it comes to Climate Change, we should listen to people who know what they are talking about because our lives depend on them. 27 Ways a Heat Wave Can Kill You — A Dire Warning for a Warming Planet New research in health and climate change suggests people are more susceptible to heat-related death than once thought. ‘It’s not just the elderly. It’s everybody.' More people are projected to die from extreme heat in coming years, and new research is beginning to understand how. The findings suggest that heat may often be overlooked as a cause of death, giving the public a skewed picture of the risks they face in a warming world. Scientists at the University of Hawaii at Manoa reviewed medical literature to identify ways in which the body responds to heat and how organs are affected. They calculated that there are 27 ways, physiologically speaking, for a person to die from extreme heat. Their findings, the researchers say, suggest that more people are susceptible to heat-related deaths than previously thought, going beyond traditionally vulnerable populations such as the elderly and people without air conditioning. They believe the findings, released this week as the UN climate conference got underway, should trigger greater concerns over the immediate physical threats from climate change. (November 10, 2017) Inside Climate News [more on Climate Change and Environmental Health in our area]

  • 11/10/2017 - Despite Trump Administration’s low profile at COP32 Americans are still in. Stay informed on COP23; We Are Still In @wearestillin “Over one hundred of America’s climate champions are participating in the next round of UN climate talks – COP23 – November 6-17 in Bonn, Germany. These university presidents, mayors, governors, and business leaders will highlight their steps to reduce climate pollution and stand in solidarity with international leaders, showing the world that US leadership on climate change extends well beyond federal policy.” WeAreStillIn

  • 11/10/2017 - Though this world news is probably not in your local news, the 23rd COP23 climate talks are going on in Bonn. Might want to take a peek at your future. 23rd Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 23) President Trump shocked the international climate community with his June 1 announcement of his intent to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, but the U.S. will still join other governments meeting Nov. 6-17, 2017, in Bonn, Germany, to continue to work towards the 2018 deadline for completing the nuts-and-bolts decisions needed to fully implement the Paris Agreement. The 23rd Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change will be hosted by Fiji, the first small island developing country to assume the Presidency. In a historic arrangement, the COP will be held in Bonn, Germany, with the support of the German government. Center for Climate And Energy Solultions {more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/10/2017 - Plastics exist in the Great Lakes in all shapes and sizes (from large, to bits, to microbeads, to microfibers) interfering with this precious ecosystem. What do we know about the effect of all this plastic in the largest fresh water system in the world and what are we doing about it? Time passes. Massive trash patch found on Lake Superior beach after storms  After fierce storms whipped up record waves on Lake Superior late last month, chewing up coastline along the Upper Peninsula, Stella Larkin stopped by to check on her friend's waterfront home east of Marquette. What she found stunned her. A large plastic-filled trash patch had washed up on the beach, tangled among the tree branches and other debris. Everything from battered dish soap bottles and body wash containers to plastic silverware and toys. Lots of children's beach toys. (November 8, 2017) MLive Michigan [more on Water Quality and Great Lakes in our area]

  • 11/10/2017 - According to part of the Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4), what are some of the “Potential Surprises: Compound Extremes and Tipping Elements” that might come with Climate Change? Are these parts of the Climate Change threats Trump doesn’t want you to know about? If we’re going to willfully ignore Climate Change, we ought to at least get an idea of what we are likely to unleash to future generations. Time passes.

  • 11/10/2017 - When an anti-science, anti-environmental governmental ideology purposely sets out to blind humanity on our ability to monitor the effects of Climate Change, we are lost. Time passes. Congress ordered destruction of obstructing satellite research into climate change The Republican majority in the US Congress has been accused of deliberately obstructing research on global warming after it emerged that a critically important technique for investigating sea-ice cover at the poles faces being blocked. The row has erupted after a key polar satellite broke down a few days ago, leaving the US with only three ageing ones, each operating long past their shelf lives, to measure the Arctic’s dwindling ice cap. Scientists say there is no chance a new one can now be launched until 2023 or later. None of the current satellites will still be in operation then. (November 5, 2017) The Guardian [more on Climate Change in our area]

  • 11/10/2017 - When our leaders don’t appreciate the threat of Climate Change, we won’t be able to plan for the future that’s coming. Time passes. Trump Ignores Climate Change. That’s Very Bad for Disaster Planners. When Hurricane Irma swept through the Florida Keys in September, it brought a vivid preview of the damage that climate change could inflict on the region in the decades ahead. The storm washed out two sections of the highway connecting the Keys, leaving residents stranded for days. With ocean levels rising around these low-lying islands, however, that interruption could end up seeming minor: By 2030, almost half the county’s roads could be affected by flooding. “We know that the water isn’t going away,” said Rhonda Haag, the sustainability director for Monroe County, which is preparing to elevate vulnerable roadways in the Keys. But the task is so costly, up to $7 million per mile of road, that the county may ultimately require outside help. (November 9, 2017) The New York Times [more on Climate Change in our area]

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