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December RENewsletter 06

RochesterEnvironment.com’s Newsletter

December 2006

Join our Newsletter and get all the Rochester environmental news each week.

 

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         Highlights of the December 2006 RENewsletter:  As always, there's lots going on in the Rochester area pertaining to our environment.  You just have to look all over the Internet to find the stories.  But, here at RochesterEnvironment.com we bring it all to one place. 

 

* Hottest issue this month of December 06:  My vote for the biggest environmental story for our area is Energy.  Overall, I see a major shift in the way our area views the importance of energy and how it fits into the total picture of Global Warming, but it is a confused and varied picture.  For example we see that a major Cellulosic Ethanol Plant is coming to our area, which is a move towards renewable energy and more jobs for our area.  And, there’s a story about “Wind power agreements to serve government customers in New York City.” However, more ominous, is the possible construction of an “Advanced Coal Gasification unit in Tonawanda, NY” and town of Canadice attempting to thwart large wind farms in its area.  There’s also a rise in the use of outdoor furnaces to help on the energy bills.  Obstructing the view seems to be the problem in Canadice, which is a shortsighted view of our energy problems.  New York State has a lot of wind and a great potential of wind renewable energy, but the main sticky point seems to be aesthetic.  People who live in rural areas feel that they shouldn’t have to chip into the collected efforts to supply clean energy because it would muddy their view of Nature.  Perhaps they are comfortable with the possible coal plant being built in Tonawanda because they are under the illusion that they won’t be getting the ramifications of the build up of greenhouse gases, or mercury.  Most environmentalists see problems in the production of any new coal plants (however gasified or shunted) because the green house gases and mercury cannot be completely filtered out.  The move of many towards alternative heating by using outdoor furnaces is also a troubling direction (not for the owner, for they will probably save money in the short term) especially if they have assess to free fuel, as some do because they put greenhouse gases into the air and particulates which are a heath threat.  So as Rochestarians scramble to avoid the effects of Global Warming we are going to be barraged with many energy alternative and many arguments about this form of energy or that.  I recently heard a local politician rave over the possibility of using methane gases from a nearby landfill as an energy source—believing that two problems: energy and trash—will be solved in one-fell swoop.  It’s not so.  Trash going into the ground is not good because there are so many products that leave behind toxic elements.  The waste from landfills could have been recycled and used for innumerable products, instead of digging up and taking our limited natural resources—that industry does not have to pay us for.

* Other Hot Environmental issues this month:  Global Warming will not be far from any story in the Rochester area in the coming years.  As my father used to say, if you wanted to know the real weather outside, “stick your head out the window.”  Well…, it’s January and its biking weather.  So, a little dip (though we are setting records each year) in the weather does not a climate change make, you say.  But what about this report, “What may New York State experience when Global Warming takes hold?” Here is a report by the Environmental Advocates of New York:  http://www.eany.org/gw/ForecastForNewYork.pdf   Those who would look for quick solutions to curb there energy bill should reflect on the possible models for New York Sate during a Global Warming: a drop in the Great Lakes levels, a drop in hydroelectric power, summer like Georgia, increase in diseases like Lyme Disease, West Nile Virus and Malaria, not to mention the loss of over thirty bird species and perhaps the collapse of the wine and maple syrup business in our state.  This month has a story about no ice wine this year (whatever that is) because of warm temperatures.  And, you think man is not the cause of Global Warming?  What about this report from the Pew Center on Climate Change SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE OF HUMAN ROLE IN CLIMATE CHANGE GROWS ---Read a concise summary of the latest strong evidence that greenhouse gases released by human activities are the main cause of contemporary global warming The Causes of Global Climate Change (PDF).  To get a firmer handle on Global Warming, Teachers may now get their hand on Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth by requesting the DVD (free) from www.participate.net.

* The silent stories [important stories we didn't hear much about]:  With our modern sensibilities towards animals evolving (you can be jailed for years harming pets that our ancestors used to eat), so are stories about animals.  For one, the city of Rochester is clamping down on the proliferation of stray cat and dog pets that cause health and safety problems by mandating sterilization.  If this bothers many, they should heed these figures: “In the U.S., the American Bird Conservancy reports there are about 77 million pet cats, 65% of which spend time outdoors. In addition, the homeless cat population is estimated at up to 100 million animals. –from SEO - Pet Cats Killing Wild Birds Also, “By estimating the number of free-ranging cats in rural areas, the number of kills per cat, and the proportion of birds killed, the researchers calculated that rural free-roaming cats kill at least 7.8 million birds and perhaps as many as 217 million birds a year in Wisconsin.” –from Cats and Wild Birds Don't Mix -- WildBirds.com  I mention these figures because one of the main arguments that anti-wind turbine groups use to halt wind turbine in their communities is the amount of birds killed by modern wind turbines (which is negligible) and forget about the millions of birds killed by pet cats left outdoors.  Cats kill exponentially more birds that wind turbines. Also, the Bald Eagle population in NYS, so devastated by DDT, is rebounding.  And, the fish in the Great Lakes may be getting a break from a disease Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia caused by invasive species by a new rule that will put some restrictions on selling live bait. I, myself, am in favor of this new law in Canada’s Quetico Provincial Park [the story is in Daily Updates 12.23], where all live bait and barbed hooks for fishing are restricted.  That’s radical for most, but these two simple rules could have a major positive effect on our Finger Lakes and Great Lakes fish populations.  Think about it. Along with that the NYS DEC is conducting a research project on the Wild Turkey populations to find out how to conduct future management of this popular hunting species.  My spin is that the DEC should pay as much attention and do a research project on the purported 45, 000 coyotes in our state.  We know little about the Eastern Coyote that has replaced the major predators in our state and how they are affecting our environment.  We don’t really know what is going on with the Eastern Coyote populations—except the apocryphal gossip that one usually hears about animals few have actually seen. 

* On-Going Concerns:  Saving land is a story, a good story, one that is quietly taking up print each month.  Not enough, of course, because (for example) even though Greece, NY is considering saving 28 acres of land in a new deal, most of Greece (88% according to the Democrat and Chronicle) is developed.  This story from the Messenger Post online points to a critical problem we are experiencing in our area: MPNnow.com: “Towns, farmers cultivate new trends in agriculture Since the 1980s, farming has steadily declined as a way of life for fourth-and-fifth generation agricultural families. Increasingly, lifelong farmers choose to sell their property — sometimes to developers — to support themselves in their golden years and to leave their children an inheritance. But that can be at odds with what many residents want — wide open spaces and less sprawl.”  This, I believe, is a major situation that will wreak havoc on our local environment eventually.  Also, Fayette, NY’s town board is considering a purchase-of-development-rights program that would put special restrictions on new developed land. And, of course the most critical land-saving issue is the potential for the City of Rochester to sell off land in the Canadice and Hemlock Lake watershed areas.  This item is so hot, you’ll have to re-read the Democrat and Chronicle’s story to get the facts: Pitting lakes vs. water needs - As county, city talk merger, our resource may lose protection— The systems that allow hundreds of thousands of Rochester-area residents to tap into one of their most precious resources — clean water — may soon be overhauled. And that could determine the fate of two pristine Finger Lakes. (December 17, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle.  Then, then the issue of machine-gunning lead bullets across the Great Lakes is on hold for awhile after the US Coast Guard listened to the public.  The Coast Guard argued that protecting our watery borders with Canada required live training, but many others thought that lead bullets could be as polluting as lead sinkers, which is now restricted by law.  Anyway, this issue will probably be back. 

* Environmental Actions you can take for our area:  I don’t see any specific environmental actions online that you can take this month, unless you want to send a letter to the mayor of Rochester and/or the City Council—and maybe even our new governor about the importance of preserving the pristine watershed land in question at Hemlock and Canadice Lakes.  Of course, you should be recycling all those wrappers you got for Christmas along with your presents and there are several places you can deposit your discarded Christmas tree.  Both the city and the county have recycling Christmas tree programs: “Brooks Announces Christmas Tree Recycling Programs - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks announced that residents can once again recycle their Christmas trees, free of charge, at a number of locations across Monroe County. A list of drop-off locations, instructions, and hours of operation is attached, and can also be found at www.monroecounty.gov . MyMonroe. Opening Up Government. | Monroe County, NY” and “City is Ready to Recycle Christmas Trees - ROCHESTER, NY Chances are your Christmas tree is still up, but when the time comes to recycle it, the city has five locations you can drop it off. (2006-12-27) WXXI NewsRoom”   

* Environmental events going on this month:   As always check RochesterEnvironment.com Calendar for all environmental events in our area.  I have some listed but you can also go to my page: Local Web sites that have their own continual updating of Rochester-area Environmental Events http://www.rochesterenvironment.com/local_schedules.htm

* Rochester-area Environmental Site of the Month:   RochesterBirding: Welcome to the Web Home of the Rochester Birding Association, located in Rochester, NY. Our mission is to enable residents of the Greater Rochester Area to gain a fuller appreciation of the region's birds and its birding.

      

NEWS SUMMARY: Many of the news links below may already be out of date because these online news sources do not archive their stories.  To get the full articles, you can contact the news service and ask them for a copy. 

News for December 2006:

  • Urban forestry grant awards announced - Approximately $300,000 in Urban and Community Forestry Grants for 32 tree planting projects in local urban neighborhoods and parks were announced Thursday. The grants are designed to promote energy savings, habitat creation, increased property values, and improved quality of life for New York’s urban residents. The grants to cities, villages, towns and not-for-profit organizations across the state are for community tree planting projects that will result in the planting of an estimated 3,000 new trees. The grants are made possible through the Urban and Community Forestry program, which is funded by New York State and the United States Forest Service and administered by the State Department of Environmental Conservation. - Monroe County · Town of Greece - $7,500 – The Department of Public Works will plant 150-175 trees. · Village of Brockport - $7,400 – The Village of Brockport will plant 48 trees on public rights of way along Village streets. (December 31, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • Greece to purchase 28 more open acres — GREECE — Within the next few weeks, the town plans to add 28 acres off Manitou Road to its inventory of more than 3,000 acres of open space. The Town Board approved making a purchase offer on the land on Dec. 19. (December 31, 2006)Democrat & Chronicle
  • Ice wine prospects are melting away - Ice wine makers in the region, as well as Canada, are in dire straits because of this winter's mild weather, and some fear there will be no product at all if January doesn't bring icy temperatures. Ice wines, which are very sweet, dessert-style drinks, are unique because the grapes used are harvested and pressed while frozen. Finger Lakes Times Online
  • Brooks Announces Christmas Tree Recycling Programs - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks announced that residents can once again recycle their Christmas trees, free of charge, at a number of locations across Monroe County. A list of drop-off locations, instructions, and hours of operation is attached, and can also be found at www.monroecounty.gov. MyMonroe. Opening Up Government. | Monroe County, NY
  • City is Ready to Recycle Christmas Trees - ROCHESTER, NY Chances are your Christmas tree is still up, but when the time comes to recycle it, the city has five locations you can drop it off. (2006-12-27) WXXI NewsRoom
  • MPNnow.com: Manchester bans outdoor furnaces - During the next six months, town officials will write rules meant to head off problems with smoldering chimneys. MANCHESTER — The Town Board has adopted a six-month moratorium on outdoor wood-burning furnaces to give officials time to write regulations for them. (December 20, 2006) Messenger Post Newspapers
  • MPNnow.com: State wants more detail on South Bristol project-The Department of Environmental Conservation had 11 pages of questions for Ketmar Development. SOUTH BRISTOL — The developer of Seneca Point Landing, a proposed upscale subdivision, has more work to do on its environmental impact statement before the document can be released to the public, a state official said. (December 21, 2006) Messenger Post Newspapers
  • MPNnow.com: Here a bear, there a bear ... ..People are seeing bears everywhere, but wildlife experts are having a little trouble keeping tabs on them. (December 26, 2006) Messenger Post Newspapers
  • How to recycle Tannenbaum - The city of Rochester has designated five locations for residents to recycle Christmas trees that have been stripped of their lights and ornaments through Jan 27: (December 27, 2006)  Democrat & Chronicle
  • Mild weather leaves us wondering where the snow is - According to National Weather Service data, only 4.2 inches of snow has fallen in Rochester since Oct. 1, with 3.3 inches of that this month. The normal snowfall for December to date is 17.9 inches. And in an average winter, 25 inches of snow falls on Rochester for all of December. (December 27, 2006)  Democrat & Chronicle
  • Second audit of water deals coming - Office says Hevesi scandal won't affect it — State Comptroller Alan Hevesi is gone, but his pending second audit of the Monroe County Water Authority has not been forgotten. With Hevesi's resignation Friday, an obvious question is what may happen to a highly anticipated audit that is expected to delve into alleged conflicts of interest at the Water Authority. But a Comptroller's Office spokeswoman said Tuesday that the audit won't be derailed by Hevesi's departure. Hevesi, a Democrat, resigned and pleaded guilty to defrauding the government by using a state worker as his wife's chauffeur and aide. (December 27, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle
  • DEC begins second season of wild turkey studies - New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Denise Sheehan has announced that DEC is preparing for the second field season of two large-scale wild turkey research projects. The first project is a turkey banding program, being done in cooperation with the Pennsylvania Game Commission, Ohio Department of Natural Resources, researchers from Pennsylvania State University, and the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF). The second project is a statewide winter flock survey. These studies will provide information that DEC biologists need to help guide future management efforts for this popular game bird. (December 27, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • N.Y. Power Authority sets record for energy efficiency funding - The New York Power Authority invested about $110 million in energy efficiency and clean energy projects during 2006, breaking the Authority’s previous one-year record of $103.8 million, set in 2001. NYPA set the new record in a year in which it also passed the $1 billion mark for total investments in energy efficiency and clean energy initiatives since the late 1980s. (December 27, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • NRG Energy, Inc. Receives Conditional Award to Build Advanced Coal-Gasification Power Plant in Western New York: Will Enter into a Strategic Alliance with NYPA - Company Release - 12/19/2006 17:29 In a landmark decision today, NRG Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NRG) received a conditional award of a contract from the New York Power Authority to build an innovative, 680 net megawatt (MW), Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) plant at its Huntley facility in Tonawanda, New York. The project, which represents a total project cost of approximately $1.5 billion, is scheduled to go into commercial operation in 2013. Unlike other technologies some refer to as "clean coal," this plant can be designed to capture and sequester carbon from the first day of operation. "New York should be commended for exercising great courage and leadership in tackling head on the country's single biggest issue, global warming, while embracing coal--our most affordable, abundant domestic fuel source," said David Crane, NRG President and Chief Executive Officer. "While we realize this is only the beginning of a long road to implementation, we are gratified to be part of such an important milestone and we look forward to working with New York to begin construction of this important technology by 2008." --from NRG Energy, Inc.

  • New Energy Plant to Rochester - Alternative energy advocates tout cellulosic ethanol as the next big thing. The Rochester area is ready to be part of it. Governor Pataki delivered $25.2 million in state funding for a new cellulosic ethanol plant. Corn is the main ingredient in most ethanol produced in our country, but cellulosic ethanol can be made from grass and wood. (December 21, 2006) R News: As It Happens, Where It Happens
  • environment: green Christmas - Eco-friendly alternatives to gift-wrap - Gifts sure do look purdy when they're wrapped in shiny paper and decorated with ribbons and bows. But is that necessary? After all, it's what's inside that counts, right? (December 13, 2006) http://www.rochesterinsider.com/apps/pbcs.dll/frontpage
  • Free electronics recycling program - This time of year a lot of television sets, computers and phones are being given as gifts but the electronics they replace can damage the environment if disposed of improperly. One local processing facility in Victor is urging people to take advantage of its annual free Christmas electronics recycling program. Regional Recycling and Recovery has launched its annual household electronics recycling program. Now through the end of February, Rochester area residents can properly dispose of computer equipment, televisions, phones and many other electronics. There are 2 drop off locations. The Rochester location is at 395 Central Avenue. The Victor location is 2 miles South of Eastview Mall at 7318 Victor Mendon Road. (December 20, 2006) WROC TV NEWS 8 NOW ROCHESTER NEW YORK
  • Over $25 million dedicated for development of two cellulosic ethanol facilities - Governor George Pataki Wednesday announced that two companies have been selected to develop and construct pilot commercial cellulosic ethanol facilities in New York State. The state has awarded a total of up to $25.2 million to the companies to increase the production of clean and renewable fuels and reduce our dependence on imported energy. One of the companies – Mascoma Corporation – will build a 500,000 gallon/year facility in the Town of Greece, Monroe County. This project, which is a collaborative effort with Genencor, an enzyme company in Greece, along with Clarkson University, Cornell, and Khosla Ventures, has been awarded a $14,800,000 State grant and will include more than $15 million in private investment. (December 21, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • Agreement reached for advanced clean coal plant in western New York - Governor George Pataki Wednesday announced the conditional award of a power purchase agreement that would support plans by NRG Energy to construct an advanced clean coal power plant in western New York that would help to reduce our dependence on imported energy. The agreement is part of a strategic alliance being developed between the State and NRG to help the company obtain the necessary financial resources to build a clean coal facility at its Huntley Generating Station in the Town of Tonawanda, Erie County. (December 21, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • Pioneer fuel plant to be built in Greece - State to help finance $29.8M ethanol site that doesn't use corn.— A $14.8 million state grant will help build a next-generation ethanol plant in Greece that will be the first of its kind in the United States and could position the region as a leader in a growing field. Gov. George Pataki and other officials made the announcement Wednesday. In a swing across upstate, Pataki unveiled several projects aimed at making the state a leader in alternative energy development. (December 21, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle
  • BORROWING APPROVED FOR WATER PLANT - The budget may have dominated last week's CountyLegislature meeting, but there was one other important bit of action. The CountyLegislature gave the Monroe County Water Authority its go-ahead to borrow money for a proposed eastside water treatment plant. The plant has already sparked controversy, most recently at a public hearing held by the state Department of Environmental Conservation (see "Water Plant Wars," December 6). Rochester - News, Music, Restaurants, Events, Arts and Entertainment Newspaper - City Newspaper
  • State's bald eagle population soars -  Abnormally warm weather produced a record hatch this year, state DEC says - ALBANY -- Global warming, while disastrous for the planet, might be helping to produce a baby boom of bald eagles in New York state. There was a record hatch of eaglets this spring, likely driven by abnormally warm temperatures before and during the birds' mating season, according to the state's annual eagle report released Tuesday. Field crews from the state Department of Environmental Conversation counted 172 fledgling eagles this summer, a figure that "blew away" a record of 112 birds set just a year ago, said Peter Nye, head of the DEC Endangered Species Unit. (December 20, 2006) Albany NY News - Times Union - Serving Albany, Saratoga, Schenectady, Troy
  • Teachers can get 'Truth' film - Laurie David, a producer of the global warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth has announced that 50,000 DVDs will be donated to teachers across the country interested in using the film as a teaching tool. The DVDs will be given away through Jan. 18. Teachers are encouraged to go to www.participate.net  to request the DVD. (December 19, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Live-fire plans withdrawn - Coast Guard to review its plans for ammunition training on lakes - — The U.S. Coast Guard has scuttled plans to establish 34 zones in the Great Lakes for live-ammunition training. One of those zones would have sat about six miles north of Irondequoit Bay. The Coast Guard announced Monday that it had decided to withdraw plans it made public in August to establish these training zones. All of the zones would have been at least five miles offshore and periodically closed to private boat traffic, allowing crews to train and get certified in the use of boat-mounted M240 machine guns. The plan generated criticism from a number of boaters, environmentalists and politicians. The Coast Guard hosted a series of public hearings in the Great Lakes region this fall, including one Oct. 30 in Rochester. (December 19, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • Impact of pollution plan debated -- Page 1 -- Times Union - Albany NY ALBANY -- Power plant executives and environmentalists squared off Thursday over the cost of the state's ambitious proposal to combat global warming. Under proposed rules for the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, plant owners would be forced to purchase state-issued credits to emit carbon dioxide, a leading greenhouse gas. Starting in 2009, the state would sell credits for 63.4 million tons of carbon dioxide annually. The target is to cut emissions 10 percent starting in 2015 by reducing the amount of credits. (December 17, 2006) Albany NY News - Times Union - Serving Albany, Saratoga, Schenectady, Troy
  • Pitting lakes vs. water needs - As county, city talk merger, our resource may lose protection— The systems that allow hundreds of thousands of Rochester-area residents to tap into one of their most precious resources — clean water — may soon be overhauled. And that could determine the fate of two pristine Finger Lakes. (December 17, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • The cause of bacteria at Durand Eastman Beach - News - MSNBC.com Rochesterians have been swimming at Durand Eastman Beach for well over 100 years, but legal swimming was prohibited in the 1960's because of pollution concerns. The culprit- several streams that empty onto the beach from Durand Eastman Park, and neighborhoods just south of Lakeshore Boulevard. (December 11, 2006) Rochester, NY news from WHEC-TV - MSNBC.com
  • MPNnow.com: Thinking globally, working locally A forest-saving arm of the Nature Conservancy has a new home in Canandaigua. CANANDAIGUA — As the Nature Conservancy was working earlier this year toward the purchase of 218,000 acres of forestland across 10 states, to the tune of about $311 million, one of the people making it happen was simultaneously planning a more personal transaction. Messenger Post Newspapers
  • Fayette explores new land program - FAYETTE - The Town Board agreed Thursday to let the Planning Board look into the possibility of creating a purchase-of-development-rights program. Under the voluntary program, a land trust or other agency would be able to buy the development rights to a piece of property. A permanent deed restriction would then be placed on the land, limiting what kind of activities could take place there. The agency involved would then retire the development rights upon purchase, creating a legally binding guarantee that the land would stay agricultural or open space forever. (December 15, 2006) Finger Lakes Times Online
  • Study Looks at Effect of Environment on Breast Cancer - Researchers at the National Institutes of Health are looking for sisters in the Rochester area to participate in a new study of breast cancer and the environment.  To register for the study or find out more information, call 1-(877)-4SISTER or 1-877-474-7837. (December 15, 2005) 13WHAM-TV || Rochester
  • Big Prices for Small Fish New regulations force minnow costs to rise  - Fishermen in New York and the rest of the Great Lakes region might want to budget a few extra dollars for bait in 2007. Minnow prices - now as low as $1 a dozen in some Central New York bait shops - are likely to increase as a result of emergency regulations issued by state and federal strictures to slow the spread of Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia, a disease implicated in recent die-offs of fish in the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario and Conesus Lake. Just how much the cost of bait will go up, and when, isn't yet known. (December 15, 2006) Latest News and More From Syracuse.com
  • Monroe cutback stuns Cornell co-op - Farm agency loses $175,000; new MCC institute to get funding instead— Cornell Cooperative Extension-Monroe County is warning that it may have to drop half its programs after the County Legislature abruptly cut a substantial portion of its funding this week. In the 11th hour Tuesday night, the Republican-controlled Legislature voted as part of the 2007 budget to cut $175,000 and use the money instead for an Agriculture and Life Sciences Institute at Monroe Community College. (December 14, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • City seeks to sterilize stray pets - Mayor notes growing health, safety problem — An increasing number of stray and unwanted pets might lead Rochester to mandate sterilization for all dogs and cats picked up by animal control or adopted from the shelter. "The city is experiencing a significant overpopulation of unwanted cats and problems related to stray and roaming dogs," said Mayor Robert Duffy in a message seeking the mandate from City Council. "These matters affect public health, safety and the quality of life." (December 14, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • Adirondack oversight questioned — ALBANY — How did the agency responsible for monitoring the environment of the Adirondack Park rapidly clear out its backlog of cases? By sweeping thousands of potential violations under the rug simply because the agency didn't have enough people to investigate, according to a report issued Tuesday by a group that monitors the 6-million-acre-wilderness. (December 13, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • MPNnow.com: Towns, farmers cultivate new trends in agriculture Since the 1980s, farming has steadily declined as a way of life for fourth-and-fifth generation agricultural families. Increasingly, lifelong farmers choose to sell their property — sometimes to developers — to support themselves in their golden years and to leave their children an inheritance. But that can be at odds with what many residents want — wide open spaces and less sprawl. To that end, the town of Penfield is making progress on the second phase of open space preservation. It also finds ways to support working farms that provide agricultural entertainment and tourism (December 9, 2006). MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • MPNnow.com: No welcome mat for wind farms in Canadice CANADICE — Canadice is not outlawing wind farms, but the town wants to make it pretty difficult for any 400-foot turbines to get built here. That’s the gist of a proposed wind-farm law up for public inspection on Monday, Dec. 11, at 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall. It’s not the official hearing that precedes a Town Board vote; that could come in January. But it is the first time the public can read and comment on a full text that the Wind Farm Study Group has been revising over the last year. The 11-page law would prohibit industrial towers in places where the Planning Board feels they would detract from the view. MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • Durand beach fails its health test - As alarming data emerge, second season becomes unlikely — Durand-Eastman beach is unlikely to reopen for a second season in 2007, county health officials said Friday, citing water sampling data they say showed alarming contamination levels after heavy rains. "We've never seen anything like this at Lake Ontario Beach, or in the river," said Dr. Andrew Doniger, the county's public health director. "We were sort of blown away when we saw this. That is why we've been so gun-shy." (December 9, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • Wind power agreements to serve government customers in New York City - Clean, renewable power is the underlying energy for contractual arrangements by the New York Power Authority with two wind power companies, on behalf of the Authority’s large governmental customers in New York City and the thousands of public facilities they operate. (December 9, 2006) New York State News on the Net!
  • MPNnow.com: Alternative energy: The new gold rush Decayed Corn Belt and Rust Belt communities have seen the future and it's ... ethanol! The gleaming $110 million ethanol plant is still rising over their cornfields, but locals in Heron Lake, Minn. say it’s already the best thing to happen here in decades. Farmers and other residents plunked down a minimum of $20,000 each to buy stock in the plant, and the electric co-op kicked in a $740,000 loan. The Hotel Whiskey Bar & Grill fills up on some nights with the plant’s construction workers. And Mayor John Hay figures the plant will triple his city’s tax base, making it possible to upgrade area roads and fix the leaky roof on the city-owned nursing home. (December 4, 2006) Messenger Post Newspapers

  • Monroe County to award scouting patch for recycling - Twelve Monroe County area scouts were awarded a newly-crated recycling patch Tuesday night. The patch was created to recognize local scouts for their dedication to protecting the air we breathe and the water we drink. New York State News on the Net!
  • Webster water plant postponed 18 months - Talks over city-authority pact to delay construction — Construction on a long-planned and controversial water-treatment plant has been put on hold for at least 18 months. Just before critical public meetings began Thursday on the public water-treatment plant in Webster, the Monroe County Water Authority agreed to delay the construction start of the plant until it concludes critical negotiations with Rochester. Edward Marianetti, the authority's executive director, and Paul Holahan, the city's environmental services commissioner, said Thursday afternoon that authority and city officials had agreed earlier in the day that they would begin negotiations shortly on a new city-authority pact. (December 1, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • Lakes' health is 'about kids' Conferees issue a call to heal the waters 'before it's too late' —  It was an intentional reminder to those attending the inaugural New York State Healing Our Waters Coalition Conference on Saturday at the Seneca Park Zoo. "It's really about the next generation of kids," said the program coordinator for the Finger Lakes-Lake Ontario Watershed Protection Alliance. About 60 people from more than 30 different environmental organizations and groups met for six hours to learn about the importance of taking action to save the Great Lakes. There was talk of many initiatives and the need for funding — in some cases thousands and in other cases millions of dollars. --(December 3, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • GLOBAL WARMING REPORT PREDICTS INCREASE IN HEAT-RELATED ILLNESSES, ASTHMA & FLOODING, INFRASTRUCTURE DAMAGE FOR NYS - Environmental Advocates of New York Releases Forecast for New York Report Documenting Global Warming Impacts & Next Steps - (Albany, NY)—On November 29, Environmental Advocates of New York released Forecast for New York: Projected Global Warming Impacts & Next Steps, a report projecting the impacts of climate change on New York State, including the effects of global warming on the state’s public health, infrastructure, agriculture industry, and water supply, among other impacts. Forecast for New York also describes the state’s current strategies to address global warming and policy recommendations to further reduce greenhouse gas emissions. These recommendations are particularly relevant in light of the anticipated release of the state’s rule for implementation of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in New York, a seven-state plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions from electric power generators in the Northeast. -- from Environmental Advocates of New York
  • Media Release: Cities fouling the Great Lakes with raw sewage TORONTO, ONTARIO – Sierra Legal released its first Great Lakes Sewage Report Card today, an investigative report that analyzes twenty cities in the Great Lakes basin and grades them based on how well they manage their sewage. The results are appalling. Although many cities have made efforts to clean up their act, waters surrounding urban areas throughout the Great Lakes are still commonly unsafe for recreational use and many parts of the vast freshwater ecosystem are in peril. “The Great Lakes basin is one of the most important freshwater ecosystems on the planet – holding one fifth of the world's freshwater,” said report author Dr. Elaine MacDonald. “Yet, the twenty cities we evaluated are dumping the equivalent of more than 100 Olympic swimming pools full of raw sewage directly into the Great Lakes every single day.” --from Sierra Legal Defence Fund
    • To download a Media Backgrounder, grading methodology or a copy of the Report, follow the links. For further information please contact:

    • Elaine MacDonald, Sierra Legal, Staff Scientist, P.Eng., Ph.D.
      (416) 368-7533 ext. 27

    • Jode Roberts, Sierra Legal, Communications Director
      (416) 368-7533 ext. 25

  • globeandmail.com: Wave of raw sewage escapes treatment Billions of litres dumped into Great Lakes annually from Canada, U.S., report says - TORONTO -- The first comprehensive look at the amount of raw sewage flowing into the Great Lakes from cities in Canada and the United States has found that billions of litres are being dumped untreated every year into the sources of drinking water for communities on both sides of the border. The largest discharges came from big cities such as Detroit, Cleveland and Toronto, where antiquated sewage treatment systems are regularly overwhelmed when it rains and their contents swept untreated into the lakes. But even smaller communities, such as Ontario's London and Kingston, release large quantities of raw sewage. (December 03, 06) globeandmail.com: Canada's National Newspaper

 

 WHAT'S NEW?  Each day RochesterEnvironment.com scours the Internet for all environmental articles, events, actions and issues pertaining to Rochester, New York.

 Updates in RochesterEnvironment.com for December 2006:

  • 12/31/06 -- Here's a good idea from the NYS DEC: Saratoga Tree Nursery School Seedling Program New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Denise M. Sheehan today announced that free tree seedlings are available to schools across the State for spring planting through the DEC School Seedling Program.* Planting for Knowledge School Seedling Program Planting and caring for a seedling tree can help young people learn about the natural world and the value of trees in it. DEC's school seedling program provides New York State's school students with this experience.
  • 12/31/06 -- This looks like an admirable program because it gets the public to think about disposing hazardous waste. But, Monroe County is not included. What’s that all about? DEC announces household hazardous waste grants - "New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Denise Sheehan Friday announced nearly $2.4 million in grants to 21 municipalities and solid waste authorities to promote the collection and proper disposal of household hazardous wastes. The grant funding is provided from the New York State Environmental Protection Fund. - Many commonly used household hazardous waste products contain some of the same chemical components that are otherwise regulated as hazardous waste when generated by industry. These household products can pose hazards to the consumer and to the environment if they are not properly handled, stored and discarded. The best approach to managing household hazardous waste is through local community educational outreach programs that keep residents informed of how to safely and properly dispose of hazardous products." --from New York State News on the Net!
  • 12/29/06 - **MY THOUGHTS**-- Climate Change: Attitude is everything. Most have gotten their minds around the concept of Global Warming, for our planet is indeed warming up. Granted, it has taken awhile for scientists and environmentalists to convince the public that this is so and now only but a few of the most entrenched say publicly that Global Warming is nothing but a hoax. (One is the out-going leader of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works.) But many, and that includes the present administration, has not Got It! Present Global Warming is due to mankind’s footprints, that is, industry, fossil fuels being burnt up far faster than the normal carbon cycle.

    Why is this important that the education of our public officials, lawyers, and the public go to the next level on Global Warming? Because if you don’t get it that man is causing this present leap in global warming gases like carbon dioxide and methane, then you don’t act. You believe that were just going through a normal climate trend and there’s nothing we can do because climate just changes. (Though, that too is a spurious argument, because regardless of the cause, if our planet is warming up quickly the consequences of that will affect us nonetheless.)

    Anyway, it matters that you understand and find evidence that present Global Warming is due to mankind because you will believe that it is possible to reverse the effects. In New York State the effects could mean the lowering of the Great Lakes water level, the reduction of hydroelectric power, having summers like Georgia, the increase of diseases like Lyme disease, malaria, and West Nile Virus, much less snowfall, the possible destruction of the wine and maple syrup businesses, and many more days of temperature over 90 degrees. So, we need to take the threat of Global Warming to the next level. We need not throw up our hands and give up, but realize that our actions—driving cars and heating our by houses—by burning fossil fuels are the cause of the dramatic increase in our planet’s greenhouse gases. And act, by voting for responsible politicians who ‘get it.’ By buying more fuel efficient furnaces and automobiles and educating our friends and anyone who will listen to us that we are living in extraordinary times where we are responsible for the environment that our children will inhabit. Your attitude towards Global Warming in the next ten years will make the difference.

    Here’s the beginning statement by the Pew Center for Climate Change SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE OF HUMAN ROLE IN CLIMATE CHANGE GROWS ---Read a concise summary of the latest strong evidence that greenhouse gases released by human activities are the main cause of contemporary global warming The Causes of Global Climate Change (PDF): “During the twentieth century, the earth’s surface warmed by about 1.4 °F. There are a variety of potential causes for global climate change, including both natural and human-induced mechanisms. Science has made great strides recently in determining which potential causes are actually responsible for the climate change that occurred during the twentieth century, providing strong evidence that greenhouse gases released to the atmosphere by human activities are the main cause of contemporary global warming.”

  • 12/25/06 -- The Vision that changed some of us into environmentalists. There was that photograph from one of the Apollo trips to the moon, where an astronaut turned and shot a photo of Earth rising at the moon. Thousands saw a new way at looking at our planet, large and brimming with life, off the horizon of its dead moon. But, perhaps a more significant photograph was that that Carl Saga had an unmanned probe take of Earth from much further way in our solar system, which made Earth look like a “Pale Blue Dot.” This vision of a small, delicate planet in a bad (lots of asteroids) part of our solar system in a distant part of our galaxy, among billions of galaxies, made our planet look tiny and vulnerable. As far as we know, there’s nothing else like Earth. And, there’s nothing else like Earth at this moment in history when conditions are ripe for mankind, which given its four billion-year history, hasn’t been so hospitable. Granted a vision is just a glimpse, not a comprehensive argument that, for example, our planet is in great environmental trouble. Nevertheless, a small vibrant planet out there all by itself amidst countless suns and dead worlds has compelled some of us to think we ought not to take chance with our environment—which is only a narrow band of all possible environments in which our species can thrive. So anyway, you can request a transcript of this discussion with the late Dr. Sagan from Science Friday, but you can also listen to the program as a podcast from Science Friday. Or you can order the "Pale Blue Dot : A Vision of the Human Future in Space." Ballantine Books, 1997. –from Amaon.com.
  • 12/23/06 -- Simple Solutions for our Environment:  There is a new law coming out of Canada that sounds like a simple solution to a complex problem, yet it is a profound law that (I believe) will greatly affect fish life in Canada’s Quetico Provincial Park. We should adopt this law for all our lakes in the United States and especially in New York.  It may sound extreme to some (especially those who make a profit from live bait and barbed fish hooks) but we can also find a way to compensate those who will pay the price for helping to protect our waters. The ecology of our lakes—both the Finger Lakes and Lake Ontario—that surround the Rochester area is becoming more dear.  Soon, our government is going to implement a new measure to control Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia, a fish disease that has caused wide-spread damage to our area’s fish population, by inspecting live bait. [Check out: Big Prices for Small Fish New regulations force minnow costs to rise  - Fishermen in New York and the rest of the Great Lakes region might want to budget a few extra dollars for bait in 2007. Minnow prices - now as low as $1 a dozen in some Central New York bait shops - are likely to increase as a result of emergency regulations issued by state and federal strictures to slow the spread of Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia, a disease implicated in recent die-offs of fish in the St. Lawrence River, Lake Ontario and Conesus Lake. Just how much the cost of bait will go up, and when, isn't yet known. (December 15, 2006) Latest News and More From Syracuse.com  ] But, we should go further to protect our lakes by adopting Canada’s new law: “The new rules prohibit the use of any organic bait - anything like worms or leeches, living or dead. The rules also prohibit the use of hooks that have barbs on them. Next year, visitors will need to use artificial lures or bait, and the hooks will have to be barbless.” From Trying to Get off the Hook -- Canadian officials introduce new rules for fishing in the waters of an Ontario wilderness.by Earthwatch Radio
  • 12/23/06 – Looking for ways to cut down on waste during Christmas? Here’s an excellent article from Waste Online- christmas recycling "Christmas! A time of goodwill and celebration, often accompanied by seasonal increases in eating, drinking and spending. If all goes well this combination should result in a lot of fun, but unfortunately it will also result in an estimated 3 million tonnes of waste. But you can have the best of both worlds. With a bit of thought you can limit the impact you have on the environment this Christmas and still have a great time."
  • 12/19/06 -- We applaud the US Coast Guard’s decision not to start a live fire program on the Great Lakes. And, all those to commented to the Coast Guard and the Coast Guard for asking for and listening to US and Canadian opinions about this issue. (But, some ideas are so bad that they shouldn’t have even gotten off the planning table.) Live-fire plans withdrawn - Coast Guard to review its plans for ammunition training on lakes - — The U.S. Coast Guard has scuttled plans to establish 34 zones in the Great Lakes for live-ammunition training. One of those zones would have sat about six miles north of Irondequoit Bay. The Coast Guard announced Monday that it had decided to withdraw plans it made public in August to establish these training zones. All of the zones would have been at least five miles offshore and periodically closed to private boat traffic, allowing crews to train and get certified in the use of boat-mounted M240 machine guns. The plan generated criticism from a number of boaters, environmentalists and politicians. The Coast Guard hosted a series of public hearings in the Great Lakes region this fall, including one Oct. 30 in Rochester. (December 19, 2006) Democrat & Chronicle:
  • 12/17/06 --  What You Can Do To Protect Lake Ontario and the Genesee River - If you live in Monroe County, all the water that passes through your home and lawn will eventually end up in Lake Ontario or the Genesee River. That means what you do in your home has a big impact on water quality. You can help improve the water quality of the river and lake. -- from the Monroe County Environmental Health | Public Health
  • 12/17/06 -- Have you got the Book? The Department of Environmental Services provides safe, clean and attractive surroundings for the community. This occurs through the efficient planning, development and provision of water service, solid waste & recycling pick-up, infrastructure maintenance and service programs. The Department staffs the 24 hour / 7 day a week Office of Customer Satisfaction service telephone number for citizens to contact the City with complaints, comments, questions and requests at (585) 428-5990. Click here for A Book For All Seasons A Guide to the City of Rochester Environmental Services
  • 12/17/06 -- How’s our health here in New York State and Monroe County? Track cancer rates and birth defect tracking and environmental health Health in New York ---from Trust for America's Health
  • 12/16/06 - Words of Wisdom from the NYS DEC: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Compost and Buy Recycled This Holiday Season The holiday season with its accompanying buying, wrapping and celebrating substantially increases the amount of solid waste we generate. However, there are many opportunities for you to reduce, reuse and recycle the remnants of holiday cheer. Listed below are some tips for reducing waste during the holiday season. --from New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - Protecting NY's Environment and Managing its Natural Resources
  • 12/08/06 -- Here is an article from Artvoice: Buffalo's #1 Alternative Newsweekly that is a sober assessment of the problems we may face as other nations look enviously at our Great Lakes. The Rising Waters "Today, in America, we face increasing water stresses from arid areas including the US Southwest, Africa and Asia, and increasing agricultural stress such as the demand for increased corn yields in the Midwest. Corn has everything to do with expanding demand for ethanol, an important Buffalo issue. Fresh waters including both surface waters and aquifers are threatened. The corn industry is blamed for tremendous environmental degradation throughout the Mississippi basin and into the Gulf of Mexico. As we enter into this stunning new century of uncertainty, we do know that our Great Lakes are threatened. Fresh surface water is becoming increasingly valuable. We all have a lot at stake."
  • 12/07/06 -- Revolt over new federal mercury law | csmonitor.com The state-led push could weaken the EPA's emissions-trading system, which is popular with industry. Facing a mandate to slash toxic mercury emissions from coal-fired power plants, 23 states are thumbing their noses at a federal cleanup plan and are instead developing their own far tougher plans to deal with mercury. But doing so has caused many of them to miss a federal Nov. 17 deadline to submit their plans to the Environmental Protection Agency. Now, the EPA is ratcheting up the pressure. This week, the agency is expected to publish names of more than 20 states that could have the federal plan imposed on them if they don't submit tougher plans by next spring. - The Christian Science Monitor | Daily Online Newspaper
  • 12/07/06 -- Here’s a great online project for learned all the salient facts about our Great Lakes: Historical Collections of the Great Lakes: The Historical Collections of the Great Lakes (HCGL) is part of the Center for Archival Collections at Bowling Green State University. Its purpose is to collect, preserve, and make available to scholars, students, and the public, historical materials documenting the Great Lakes region and connecting waterways. The HCGL's collections include materials related to commercial shipping, shipbuilding, navigation, maritime law, commercial fishing, shipwrecks, yachting, labor history, popular literature, freshwater ecology, recreation, and the history of Great Lakes ports.
  • 12/06/06 -- What may New York State experience when Global Warming takes hold? Here is a report by the Environmental Advocates of New York: http://www.eany.org/gw/ForecastForNewYork.pdf
  • 12/03/06 -- This is very disturbing news about the effort to get our Great Lakes clean:  --from Media Release: Cities fouling the Great Lakes with raw sewage TORONTO, ONTARIO – Sierra Legal released its first Great Lakes Sewage Report Card today, an investigative report that analyzes twenty cities in the Great Lakes basin and grades them based on how well they manage their sewage. The results are appalling. Although many cities have made efforts to clean up their act, waters surrounding urban areas throughout the Great Lakes are still commonly unsafe for recreational use and many parts of the vast freshwater ecosystem are in peril. “The Great Lakes basin is one of the most important freshwater ecosystems on the planet – holding one fifth of the world's freshwater,” said report author Dr. Elaine MacDonald. “Yet, the twenty cities we evaluated are dumping the equivalent of more than 100 Olympic swimming pools full of raw sewage directly into the Great Lakes every single day.” --from Sierra Legal Defence Fund Many cities dump untreated sewage into the lakes when it rains because they have antiquated pipes that also carry rainwater, overwhelming their treatment systems. Combined sewer outflows into the Great Lakes -The cities are ranked according to their discharges of raw sewage into the Great Lakes. The larger the circle around a city, the greater its discharge volume. City Annual discharge in millions of litres per annum Percentage of untreated sewage released annually Detroit *50,000 0% Cleveland 20,820 0% Toronto 9,000 0% Milwaukee 4,110 5.30% Syracuse 2,645 5.77% Hamilton 2,109 2.14% Windsor 1,809 1.49% Niagara 400 2.27% Rochester 379 1.70% Kingston 349 2.68% Sudbury 317 1.00% London 300 0.25% Erie 190 0.95% Grand Rapids 190 0.99% Duluth 38 0.40% Sault Ste. Marie 8 0.35% Peel 5 0.29%** Thunder Bay 0 0.07% Green Bay 0 0.05% -* Estimate ** 0.29 (0.06 raw plus 0.23 partial) -SOURCE: SIERRA LEGAL

Find all Environmental Calendar items here

Events of the month:  Each Month I will post all up and coming environmental events until they are over.  Be sure to check the list often as events come and go and I only post this newsletter once a month. 

Events for January 2007and beyond:  

When

What

Where

Click here for full Schedule: WXXI: Public Flu Clinic Schedule Released (2006-09-26) **EVENT** / **ACTION**  WXXI: Public Flu Clinic Schedule Released (2006-09-26) ROCHESTER, NY (2006-09-26) Public flu shot clinics in Monroe County start next week with an afternoon clinic at the Dome Center in Henrietta. The University of Rochester School of Nursing says it plans to hold about two dozen public flu clinics and 100 clinics at Rochester-area companies over the next few months. They say there's a solid supply of the flu vaccine on hand this year. Health authorities are advising all eligible people to get a flu shot. That's especially true for people 50 and over, young children and pregnant women. The same holds true for people with medical conditions such as asthma or heart disease. Public NewsRoom  
February 16-19, 2007. Take Aim at a New Record for the Great Backyard Bird Count! The 10th annual Great Backyard Bird Count is coming up, February 16-19, 2007. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon are challenging people everywhere to "Count for the Record" by participating in greater numbers than ever before. Greater participation provides more information about bird population trends and helps to better inform conservation. We need your help to spread the word in your community! You'll find a downloadable poster and information on the web site at www.birdsource.org/gbbc  . If you'd like to be on our list as a GBBC ambassador to help spread the word in your community however you choose, please email Jennifer Smith at jls39@cornell.edu  with "GBBC ambassador" in the subject line. In the body of the message, include your name, address, phone number, and preferred email address. Write "Media OK" if you are willing to be contacted by the media. All materials are posted on the web site, but write "Mail packet" if you would like to receive an ambassador packet in the mail. You'll find a downloadable poster and information on the web site at www.birdsource.org/gbbc  .
The classes will be held at the DeWitt Middle School 560 Warren Road, Ithaca, on the second Tuesdays of the month from 3:45 pm to 7:00 pm. Free Energy Education workshops for area schoolteachers -Please Share This With All Your Teacher Friends: NYSERDA has arranged for a series of four FREE hands-on, after-school workshops on energy to be offered locally this winter to K-12 teachers in all subject areas. The workshops will be taught by area teachers trained by National Energy Education Development (NEED) through the New York Energy $mart Students Program. The classes will be held at the DeWitt Middle School 560 Warren Road, Ithaca, on the second Tuesdays of the month from 3:45 pm to 7:00 pm. Refreshments provided and free materials and curriculum kits. Pre-registration is required. For workshop details and registration, go to www.GetEnergySmart.org  and click on Energy Education. Questions? Contact nyworkshops@need.org  or 1-800-658-5753.  
March 15-18, 2007 -from Rochester Gardening The Gardenscape Professionals Association http://www.gardenscapepros.com/  announced that advance tickets for GardenScape 2007, Rochester's Flower Show, are on sale now until the end of 2006. These tickets offer a $2 savings on adult admissions to the March 15-18, 2007 event. Sounds like a gift idea for your favorite gardener - or yourself! http://www.RochesterFlowerShow.com/  
every Saturday Current Events with the Land Trust - Land Trust. Nature walks, cruises, birdwatching, luncheons and more go on throughout the year in the beautiful Finger Lakes Region. --from Finger Lakes Land Trust  Get the Summer Talks & Treks 2006 Schedule: (requires .pdf)  
  ASES National Solar Tour The American Solar Energy Society's National Solar Tour opens thousands of homes and buildings throughout the country to provide the public with an opportunity to experience solar power, solar heating, cooling, and hot-water, wind power, daylighting, and green building technologies. Visit a tour and learn energy efficiency strategies and methods, speak with homeowners and experts, and learn how the technology works, what it costs, and why it makes sense. These are “Real Places for Real People” that show real solutions for energy independence, places contributing to a sustainable energy economy. Read more about the tour and ASES. >>> Find a Tour Near You  - 2006 Tour Information 2006 tour information is posted by state. Updates may be provided until the tour date. ASES National Solar Tour Find a Tour Near You  - 2006 Tour Information 2006 tour information is posted by state. Updates may be provided until the tour date. ASES National Solar Tour
Wind Events Many Dates and locations Wind Power Events and Events Around NYS. --from New York Wind Power Education Project. "To: NYS community, civic, and community organizations — There are many opportunities to learn about and discuss wind power in the next several weeks. Please consider attending these events and publicizing them to your membership. Also: The various regional planning councils in New York State have launched a program to help municipalities address wind power development. This effort, coordinated by the Genesee/Finger Lakes Regional Planning Council, is described at: http://www.gflrpc.org/AboutTheCouncil/Newsletter/fall06.pdf -- About The NY Wind Power Education Project The NY Wind Power Education Project is a collaborative effort of the Pace Law School Energy Project, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, and NYPIRG to increase the public's understanding of wind power issues, including its environmental benefits, in the belief that a better informed public can participate more meaningfully in the environmental review process and other public discussions surrounding proposed wind facilities. Twice per month, the NY Wind Power Education Project will distribute this email bulletin on wind energy issues and events around New York State. If you would like to forward announcements for possible inclusion in the WPEP Bulletins, simply email Anne Reynolds, areynolds@law.pace.edu . (The same address should be used if you wish to be added or removed from the list.)  
  The latest Parks, Recreation and Human Services Calendar Update is available on the City of Rochester's web site. Click on the link below (or copy and paste the link into your browser) to view the document. http://www.cityofrochester.gov/prhs/updates/30JUNE06update.pdf  
June 2-10, 2007 Here’s a chance to help clean up or organize a clean up of a nearby river in June of 2007: Volunteers Wanted: www.NationalRiverCleanup.org WASHINGTON, DC - Millions of tons of trash wind up in our nation's rivers and streams every year, and American Rivers is harnessing the environmental passion and community pride of thousands of people to do something about it. The nation's leading river advocacy organization is encouraging citizens to take part in National River Cleanup Week, presented by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and set for June 2-10, 2007. This annual event, which kicks off a series of cleanups across the country, falls during National River Awareness Month next year. Since its inception by America Outdoors in 1992, National River Cleanup Week has helped to raise public awareness of the magnitude of trash accumulating in our nation's waterways. Over the years more than 500,000 volunteers have participated in over 4,500 cleanups across the country, covering more than 100,000 miles of waterways. This past spring saw a record 422 cleanups, with an estimated 60,000 volunteers removing trash from their local rivers and streams. "A healthy river is a valuable asset to any community, and we're encouraging everyone to be a part of a program that has removed over 1,000 tons of litter and debris from beloved rivers and streams all over the nation," said Rebecca Wodder, President of American Rivers. "A cleaner river is a healthier one, and healthy rivers benefit all the communities through which they flow." Not just a worthy cause, the cleanups also are fun for everyone. That explains why so many environmental organizations, civic clubs, paddle-sports groups, federal and state agencies, and schools organize these events in their local communities. "You can't find a more hands-on way to get people directly involved in protecting the rivers they love," added Wodder. Anyone wishing to organize a cleanup can do so by first identifying a stretch of river, stream or shoreline, and then registering the event online. The website offers helpful tips for conducting a successful cleanup, including how to recruit volunteers and promote the event to the public. American Rivers supplies trash bags for every cleanup. To register a cleanup or volunteer to participate, visit: www.nationalrivercleanup.org . As part of its support, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is offering a free coffee mug and coffee sample to organizers who register their cleanup online by April 15, 2007. Corporate sponsors - including Old Town Canoes and Kayaks, Perception kayaks, Wilderness Systems, and Thule car racks - are providing free prizes to lucky volunteers who win various contests (best photo, video, publicity, and student essay). ### Founded in 1973, American Rivers is a national non-profit conservation organization dedicated to protecting and restoring healthy natural rivers for the benefit of people, wildlife and nature. American Rivers has over 65,000 supporters nationwide, with offices in Washington, DC and the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, Midwest, Southeast, California and Northwest regions. www.AmericanRivers.org <http://www.8americanrivers.org/> . Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is dedicated to providing the richest aroma and flavor, for the highest quality coffee experience. Green Mountain Coffee travels the globe to purchase the finest coffees, batch roast them to peak flavor, and vacuum package them fresh for your enjoyment. www.greenmountaincoffee.com <http://www.greenmountaincoffee.com/> To register a cleanup or volunteer to participate, visit: www.nationalrivercleanup.org
   AT CUMMING NATURE CENTER: 6472 Gulick Road, Naples, NY 14512 (585)374-6160 www.rmsc.org - Hiking trails and visitors center with restrooms, drinks and snacks (from vending machines), and a wildlife viewing area. Open Weekends Only Hours: Visitors Center 9am–5pm; Trails 9am–4:30pm. Admission: RMSC members free; Non-members: donation welcome—$3/person; $10/family. NOTE: The Nature Center will close from November 13 through December 29, 2006. It will re-open on Saturday, December 30, for the cross-country ski season.  
 

 

**Action**  (The Internet makes environmental action easier.) Check out these items and help out ( http://rochesterenvironment.com/action_rochester.htm )   RochesterEnvironment.com has made it easy to act on environmental issue by searching for all online environmental actions pertaining to our area.

Actions you can take for January 2007:

  • 12/11/06 -- **ACTION** Here’s a chance to help clean up or organize a clean up of a nearby river in June of 2007: Volunteers Wanted: www.NationalRiverCleanup.org WASHINGTON, DC - Millions of tons of trash wind up in our nation's rivers and streams every year, and American Rivers is harnessing the environmental passion and community pride of thousands of people to do something about it. The nation's leading river advocacy organization is encouraging citizens to take part in National River Cleanup Week, presented by Green Mountain Coffee Roasters and set for June 2-10, 2007. This annual event, which kicks off a series of cleanups across the country, falls during National River Awareness Month next year. Since its inception by America Outdoors in 1992, National River Cleanup Week has helped to raise public awareness of the magnitude of trash accumulating in our nation's waterways. Over the years more than 500,000 volunteers have participated in over 4,500 cleanups across the country, covering more than 100,000 miles of waterways. This past spring saw a record 422 cleanups, with an estimated 60,000 volunteers removing trash from their local rivers and streams. "A healthy river is a valuable asset to any community, and we're encouraging everyone to be a part of a program that has removed over 1,000 tons of litter and debris from beloved rivers and streams all over the nation," said Rebecca Wodder, President of American Rivers. "A cleaner river is a healthier one, and healthy rivers benefit all the communities through which they flow." Not just a worthy cause, the cleanups also are fun for everyone. That explains why so many environmental organizations, civic clubs, paddle-sports groups, federal and state agencies, and schools organize these events in their local communities. "You can't find a more hands-on way to get people directly involved in protecting the rivers they love," added Wodder. Anyone wishing to organize a cleanup can do so by first identifying a stretch of river, stream or shoreline, and then registering the event online. The website offers helpful tips for conducting a successful cleanup, including how to recruit volunteers and promote the event to the public. American Rivers supplies trash bags for every cleanup. To register a cleanup or volunteer to participate, visit: www.nationalrivercleanup.org . As part of its support, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is offering a free coffee mug and coffee sample to organizers who register their cleanup online by April 15, 2007. Corporate sponsors - including Old Town Canoes and Kayaks, Perception kayaks, Wilderness Systems, and Thule car racks - are providing free prizes to lucky volunteers who win various contests (best photo, video, publicity, and student essay). ### Founded in 1973, American Rivers is a national non-profit conservation organization dedicated to protecting and restoring healthy natural rivers for the benefit of people, wildlife and nature. American Rivers has over 65,000 supporters nationwide, with offices in Washington, DC and the Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, Midwest, Southeast, California and Northwest regions. www.AmericanRivers.org <http://www.8americanrivers.org/> . Green Mountain Coffee Roasters is dedicated to providing the richest aroma and flavor, for the highest quality coffee experience. Green Mountain Coffee travels the globe to purchase the finest coffees, batch roast them to peak flavor, and vacuum package them fresh for your enjoyment. www.greenmountaincoffee.com <http://www.greenmountaincoffee.com/>

Rochester-area Website of the Month:  The Rochester area has over 80 environmental groups. Rochester Environmentalists http://rochesterenvironment.com/environmentalists.htm  Each Month, I highlight a Rochester-area website that helps promotes finding environmental information on the web.

  • RochesterBirding: Welcome to the Web Home of the Rochester Birding Association, located in Rochester, NY. Our mission is to enable residents of the Greater Rochester Area to gain a fuller appreciation of the region's birds and its birding.

 

 

 

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