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January RENewsletter 07

RochesterEnvironment.com’s Newsletter

January 2007

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

 

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         Highlights of the January 2007 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 January 2007: My vote for the biggest environmental story for our area this month is the collaboration of Monroe County and Wegmans on educating the public about preparations for a possible Pandemic Flu. Wegmans, our area’s largest grocer, has agreed to help distribute a new Monroe County pamphlet on educating the public about planning for a pandemic influenza. I bring this issue in the forefront not because I believe we are in imminent danger of a deadly pandemic flu or because it overshadows all other environmental stories this month. I do so because it represents an accurate model of how government and business should act together towards potentially lethal environmental dangers. In actually, there is probably only a small chance that we will have to endure a mass outbreak of a very contagious and lethal form of the flu, like the one that hit the world in the fall of 1918 and winter of 1919. The point is that we should be ready. Most environmental problems, like the environmental health problem posed by a pandemic flu, need to be addressed sooner than later because they are so catastrophic that we cannot adequately deal with them without preparations. Just think how different the disaster of the Katrina Hurricane in New Orleans would have been had our government acted sooner on the information by the New Orleans Times-Picayune that had run a complete scenario of the probable consequences of a probable force-four hurricane if it hit New Orleans and its levees. Also, from my own experience in questioning acquaintances, I don’t think a lot of people know the difference between an ordinary flu and a pandemic influenza. The pandemic form of the flu will move so fast that trying to deal with it without planning is foolish. I hope that all business will help distribute the county’s pandemic info site and pamphlet, which you can get online at: <http://www.monroecounty.gov/health-pandemicflu.php>.

* Other Hot Environmental issues this month: I’m seeing several articles about the deadly fish disease viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) and how the government might deal with this problem. This disease, which had probably been transported into our water by infected fish from other lands, is going to be very difficult to solve without government, the fishing business, and fishermen themselves joining in the discussion. Also, the preservation of ‘open land’ is hot this month and many groups are working to stem sprawl, including the town of Canadice, which setting up zoning laws to characterize how portions of its land will be used. Local zoning laws can be one of the most important links in solving our environmental issues because they limit where development will occur within a district’s boundaries and what kinds of activities (like, building windmills or curbing open burning) will be allowed. If you are retiring and care deeply about your local environment, you might consider joining your town board, where you will have an important voice on the sustainability of our community. And, of course, there are several stories about recycling your Christmas trees—which, you’ve probably already done. But it might joggle you to think about recycling all year long. This leads me to a major story about more bucks for the landfill site at Riga, our local landfill, for the production and use of methane gas. I discuss this topic in Daily Updates <http://www.rochesterenvironment.com/Daily%20Updates.htm> entitled, “If It Sounds Too Good Too be True…”

* The silent stories [important stories we didn't hear much about]: I’m encouraged this month by a story about U or R researches working with EnvironmentalHealth.org (a great source I use to locate Rochester environmental stories) and I hope there will be a great turn in local reporting of environmental issues. Since 1998 (you can check my updated news archive at <http://www.rochesterenvironment.com/news_archive.htm> I have been monitoring environmental stories daily for our area and I’ve been noticing a distinct drop in articles about our Rochester area environment. I do not think this is due to a lack of environmental degradation, but a lack of interest in our environment by the public. If the public clamored for more environmental information from our media on Rochester’s environmental issues (check here for a complete listing <http://www.rochesterenvironment.com/rochester_issues.htm> then, I believe we would not be blinded by the lack of the most important information we need to sustain our existence.

* On-Going Concerns: Energy articles dominate this month’s environmental news, with talk about Ethanol leading the pack. Rochester is becoming the spark plug for ethanol research and possibly development. Because this could be an economic, as well as an environmental boon for our area, we should all bone up on this type of energy solution for Global Warming. Also, I’m seeing the growth of anti-wind farm groups, which I write about in my Daily Updates because I am concerned that these people are not getting the big picture on the environmental implications of their actions. You can discuss this issue online and others on my blog, Environmental Thoughts <http://rochesterenvironmentny.blogspot.com/> And, of course, there are several articles about how warm January’s weather was. Was it due to Global Warming or just a seasonal hiccup? I think we have to see all variations in our weather patterns in the context of Global Warming, which will be the defining backdrop for all our weather to come.

* Environmental Actions you can take for our area: Take a look at RochesterEnvironment.com’s Action page <http://www.rochesterenvironment.com/action.htm> and catch up on some on-going actions that can help our local environment. And, weigh in on Global Warming measures to be taken in our state by checking out “DEC Issues Preliminary Draft RGGI Proposal for Public Review.”

* Environmental events going on this month: Because it’s the dead of winter, environmentalists are coming out of the woodwork (you almost don’t hear of them in the hot summer months) so there’s lots going on. Some events: environmental book club, environmental art, mountain climbing, wind power event around the state, and still time to join the this year’s bird count, get flu shots, and more. 

* Rochester-area Environmental Site of the Month:   RochesterAlliance.org  When you join this e-mail based EVENT/ACTION ANNOUNCEMENT listserv you will be part of a growing community of activists that share important EVENTS & ACTIONS around our community with each other. The “Rochester” ANNOUNCE email list is a web network of activists committed to sharing information about upcoming EVENTS/ACTIONS. The moderator passes event information on to literally HUNDREDS of local activists like you! It’s easy to join. Just click here and write: subscribe ANNOUNCE and then write your name or nickname or handle in the subject or body of the message. All three elements must be in the body of the message or the subscription request will not be accepted. Learn more about the “Rochester” ANNOUNCE list by clicking here. Details Rochester List.

      

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 January 2007:

  • MPNnow.com: Canadice: This may be the year for zoning Dividing the town into districts is the supervisor’s top goal for 2007. CANADICE — Canadice, the only town in Ontario County without zoning, could divide itself into three districts this year, said Supervisor Bonnie Drake. (Jan 29, 07) Messenger Post Newspapers

  • ENVIRONMENT: What's the future for Canadice and Hemlock Lakes? - News & Opinion - Rochester City Newspaper Now, unease over the lakes' future is alive again. A water-sharing agreement between the City of Rochester and the Monroe County Water Authority will expire in 2008. Under the current agreement, the city makes a tidy little profit (several million dollars each year) by selling excess water from Hemlock and Canadice Lakes to the county system. But the city's system also faces expensive capital upgrades. The county, meanwhile, is planning a large new intake plant for the eastside suburbs. (Jan 17, 2007) Rochester City Newspaper
  • MPNnow.com: Open land, uncluttered views - Nationwide, private land set aside for conservation grew 54 percent, from 24 million acres to 37 million acres — an area larger than New England — between 2000 and 2005, according to a recent study by the Land Trust Alliance, a Washington-based umbrella group of local, state, and national land-conservation groups. National groups such as the Nature Conservancy were key in this push for preservation. But the biggest drivers for growth were volunteer local and state land trusts, whose protected acreage has doubled from 6 million acres in 2000 to 11.9 million acres. Meanwhile, the rate at which those associations were saving land tripled to 1.2 million acres a year between 2000 and 2005.(Jan 23, 2007)  MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • MPNnow.com: Algae-busters to take another crack at Honeoye Lake - A company hired to spray the water with alum ran into problems last fall. HONEOYE — More alum will have to be spread in Honeoye Lake this spring to combat the algae that causes the water to cloud and smell bad on hot summer days. Thomas Harvey of the Ontario County Planning Department told the Canadice and Richmond town boards last week that the application last September was 80 percent successful. (Jan 25, 2007) MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • N.Y. gas stations already use ethanol, but it'll become even more common — You probably don't know it, but you're likely already using ethanol. Gas stations in the Northeast have switched from the additive MTBE to a 10 percent ethanol blend, based on concerns about MTBE's impacts on health. (January 28, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Ethanol potential fuels high hopes - Eyes focus on upstate as it emerges as alternative fuel hot spot — In a snowy field outside Medina, two circular tanks rise out of the ground while construction workers dig and lay railroad track. By November, the owners of Western New York Energy LLC say a new plant will begin taking corn and turning it into more than 50 million gallons of fuel annually. (January 28, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • $10M grant to fund research, infrastructure - ITHACA — Cornell University announced Friday that it has received a $10 million grant from the state that will aid in developing technology for industrial-scale production of ethanol. Cornell will use $6 million of the money from the Empire State Development Corp. to turn a 1950s-era workshop on the first floor of Riley-Robb Hall into state-of-the-art labs. Related state-of-the-art equipment will be bought with the remaining $4 million. (Jan 22, 07) The Ithaca Journal - www.theithacajournal.com - Ithaca, NY
  • UR scientists win health fellowships — Two University of Rochester researchers have been chosen for an Environmental Health Sciences fellowship designed to make the latest research about environment and health understandable to the general public. These science communication fellows are a new project by the nonprofit, Virginia-based Environmental Health Sciences, publisher of environmentalhealthnews.org  (January 25, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Not Too Late For Flu Shots Increase in Number of Flu Cases Reported - Vaccine Supply is Plentiful ALBANY - JANUARY 24, 2007 - The New York State Health Department today reminded those New Yorkers who have not already been vaccinated for influenza (flu) that it's not too late to get their annual shot. Influenza activity has been increasing over the past few weeks in New York and surrounding states. To date, influenza has been reported in 37 New York State counties and in the five boroughs of New York City. This year health care providers and local health departments have ample supplies of flu vaccine. Each year the flu season begins in late October and usually lasts through March or even April or May. Anyone who wants to reduce their risk of the flu should get vaccinated. It takes about two weeks after vaccination to develop immunity against the flu. Symptoms of influenza are similar to cold symptoms, but come on more swiftly and are more pronounced. Other symptoms can include a fever of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, chills, a severe headache and muscle aches, as well as a cough or sore throat. (Jan. 25, 2007) New York State Department of Health
  • DEC schedules sessions on securing wildlife populations - New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Tuesday announced that DEC is accepting applications for projects aimed at securing New York's wildlife populations and their key habitats, thereby preventing future listings of species as threatened or endangered. These projects will be funded through the State Wildlife Grant Program. Approximately $2.94 million in funding is available for projects that implement the recommendations outlined in the New York State Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation strategy. Funding for these projects is provided by the SWG Program, administered through the U.S. Department of Interior. (Jan. 25, 07) New York State News on the Net!
  • Rochester Bird-Flu Expert to Testify Before Congress - Infectious disease expert John Treanor, M.D., will testify before a subcommittee of the U.S. Senate Wednesday about the threat of a bird flu pandemic. Treanor, professor of Medicine and of Microbiology and Immunology at the University of Rochester Medical Center, will speak about the status of research aimed at developing an effective vaccine against bird flu. The research comes through Treanor�s role as director of the University�s Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit, or VTEU, part of a Federally funded network of seven centers that the nation relies on to protect its citizens against infectious threats. (Jan 25, 2007) Media-Newswire.com - Press Release Distribution - PR Agency
  • Foreign Zebra mussels likely harming Canadian drinking water: study - Yahoo! News MONTREAL (AFP) - A European mussel introduced accidentally to North America in the 1980s could be tainting Great Lakes drinking water quality, affecting its taste and causing an explosion of toxic blooms, Canadian researchers said. In tests, zebra mussels (Dreissena polymorpha) changed basin water chemistry, creating favorable conditions for masses of cyanobacteria (also called blue-green algae) or blooms to grow, researchers at Ryerson University in Toronto said in a statement. (Jan 23, 07) Yahoo! News - Top Stories
  • Monroe County landfill gas to electricity plant construction gets big boost - A $200,000 state grant and $9.5 million in low-cost financing from the New York Power Authority will assist in the construction of Monroe County’s landfill gas to electricity plant. (Jan 21, 07) New York State News on the Net!
  • Brooks Joins NYPA Officials to Announce State Investment in Mill Seat - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks was joined by State Senator James S. Alesi, New York Power Authority (NYPA) Trustee Michael Townsend, Waste Management District Manager Jeff Richardson and other local officials to announce a $200,000 state grant and $9.5 million in low-cost financing from the NYPA to assist construction of the County’s Landfill Gas to Electricity plant. The $9.7 million project will produce 4.8 megawatts of power. “This innovative project offers environmental and economic benefits,” said County Executive Brooks. “Harnessing the energy in the landfill allows us to access a productive source of power. With the state grant and NYPA low-cost financing, Monroe County taxpayers will benefit from this initiative for many years to come.” --from  MyMonroe. Opening Up Government. | Monroe County, NY
  • Brooks Unveils Pandemic Flu Information Campaign - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks announced the County has launched efforts to educate, inform and prepare the public for a potential outbreak of Pandemic Flu. The outreach plan includes a new Pandemic Flu page on the County website as well as an educational brochure that will be made available at all Monroe County Wegmans pharmacies. “Monroe County has been working aggressively with our partners at the local, state and federal levels to develop plans, and be prepared in the event of an outbreak,”said County Executive Maggie Brooks. “An informed public is critical to the success of this plan, and I am grateful to Wegmans for their partnership in this effort.” --from  MyMonroe. Opening Up Government. | Monroe County, NY
  • County unveils pandemic flu Web site, brochure — Monroe County has unveiled a new brochure and Web site dedicated to educating the public about planning for pandemic influenza. A pandemic flu, which means a widespread outbreak of a potentially deadly influenza, has not happened yet. But outbreaks of a bird-based flu that spread to humans in Southeast Asia has forced health and government officials over the last few years to plan for a worldwide outbreak of such a flu. (January 19, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Riga power plant gets boost - New York Power Authority to supply low-cost financing, grant - — The New York Power Authority will bankroll the $9.7 million construction of a power plant at the Mill Seat landfill in Riga, officials announced Thursday. Monroe County officials are eager to generate excitement about its plan to use landfill gas to produce power to sell on the electric grid. Already, the county in its 2007 budget banks on selling the energy upfront for 10 years at a cost of $4 million to $5 million. Rather than make $300,000 a year or so in profits on the county-owned plant, the county wants to take the money in a lump sum to cover this year's deficit. (January 19, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Buffalo News - Shrimp may upset life in lake SYRACUSE - Another invasive species - a half-inch long ravenous shrimp from Eurasia - has been found in Lake Ontario, raising concerns among scientists that the tiny crustacean could mean dire consequences for the lake's food chain. The discovery of bloody red mysid - whose scientific name is Hemimysis anomala - was made in a lake sample taken last spring near Oswego, said Chuck O'Neill Jr., an invasive species specialist with New York Sea Grant. Its only other confirmed appearance in the Great Lakes region was last November in a channel of Muskegon Lake, which empties into Lake Michigan. (January 18, 2007) The Buffalo News
  • Group to discuss wind farms in Hamlin — Could Hamlin be a good spot for a wind farm? That's what the town's Wind Tower Committee will investigate in coming months as the nine-member group works to develop regulations for developers interested in producing wind power in Hamlin. The town currently has no regulations regarding wind tower placement (January 16, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Over $1 million targeted for Buffalo lead poisoning control - U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer has announced that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded $1,112,880 in funding to the Buffalo Office of Strategic Planning as a Lead Hazard Reduction Demonstration Grant. LHRD funds will be used by the Office of Strategic Planning to assist homeowners in rehabilitating their homes to make them lead-free and for education and outreach. (Jan 16, 2007) New York State News on the Net!
  • Hudson fish near nuke plant contain strontium-90 — In what could be the Lower Hudson Valley's next environmental controversy or just a laboratory mistake, fish in the Hudson River have been found to contain traces of strontium-90. The radioactive isotope was discovered leaking almost a year ago at the Indian Point nuclear power plants, and tests on 12 fish found four with detectible amounts. The tests were conducted for Entergy Nuclear Northeast, which owns the plants, after researchers pulled the fish from the river in late summer — six from more than 10 miles upriver in the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge area and the rest from around Indian Point. (Jan 16, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • New regulations shouldn't affect anglers 01/12/07 If you are involved in tournament fishing on Michigan's Great Lakes or inland waters, there are probably some rule changes affecting this sport in the immediate future. The reason for new regulations is an attempt to stop or at least slow the spread of viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS). As the rules originally came down from the US Dept. of Agriculture, it would have been illegal (for anyone, not just tourney anglers) to transport any of 29 species of live fish across state lines of those states bordering the Great Lakes plus Ontario and Quebec. That would have put a damper on tourneys that originate in Michigan waters whose contestants travel by boat to Canada or Ohio to catch their fish. The Ile Camera - Heritage Newspapers
  • London Free Press - City & Region - New bait fish rules gut area industry Ontario's $20-million live bait industry has been left reeling by provincial restrictions on harvesting and transporting bait fish in a bid to stop the spread of a deadly new fish virus. "It's terrible. It is just devastating to the tourism industry, outfitters and people involved in commercial bait harvesting. This is huge," said Dennis Shaw, owner of the Bass Haven outfitting business at Mitchell's Bay. (Jan 14, 07) London Free Press
  • Wind power along Lake Erie just might fly Local leaders propose a windy addition to the Lake Erie horizon - massive wind turbines that would crank out megawatts and spin off research, development and jobs. An energy task force will recommend to Cuyahoga County commissioners next month that the region pursue a demonstration project of four to 10 turbines, spinning at least three miles out on Lake Erie. (Jan 14, 2007) cleveland.com: Everything Cleveland
  • Mayors Present 10-Point Plan on Issues Impacting Cities The leadership of The United States Conference of Mayors (USCM), led by Conference President Trenton, New Jersey Mayor Douglas H. Palmer, met with newly-elected House Speaker Nancy Pelosi in a special strategy session on Capitol Hill. The purpose of the meeting was for mayors to discuss critical issues facing America's cities and to forge new partnerships as Congress sets it legislative agenda. 1) Energy and Environment Block Grant The mayors are calling for a block grant to provide funding directly to cities and urban counties for programs that improve community energy efficiency; develop and implement community strategies to reduce carbon emissions, develop and implement community and transportation energy conservation programs; encourage the development of new technologies and systems to decrease the nation's dependence on foreign oil; and promotion and development of alternative/renewable energy sources. Mayors who attended the strategy session include: Rochester (NY) Mayor Robert Duffy ( Jan 13, 2007) YubaNet | News and Information
  • Christmas tree mulch available— PITTSFORD — The town's highway department will collect Christmas trees that are placed curbside with plastic wrap and decorations removed. (January 14, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • DEC extends public comment period on key global warming policy - The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Wednesday announced that it is providing the public an additional 60 days to offer their comments on a preliminary global warming rule that will reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants - a major contributor to global warming. The new deadline for comments is March 13, 2007. Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, seven Northeast states agreed to implement a cap-and-trade program that will be the first mandatory cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gas pollution in United States history. A preliminary draft regulatory proposal was released by DEC on December 5, 2006. The additional time will allow more New Yorkers to offer their views on this critical issue. (Jan 11, 2007) New York State News on the Net!
  • Buffalo News - Some decry state's effort to save fish Dozens of local bait dealers and sport fisherman challenged the state Monday on its methods for containing a deadly virus that is killing off a wide variety of fish in the state's inland waters, including the Niagara River, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. While not at all dangerous to humans, viral hemorrhagic septicemia is a serious pathogenic virus affecting fresh and saltwater fish of varying species, sizes and age ranges, said Paul E. McKeown of the state Department of Environmental Conservation Region 9 Fisheries Unit. (Jan 10, 2008) The Buffalo News
  • Survey finds increased interest in dairy goats and sheep in New York -The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets has released the results of the Dairy Goat and Sheep Survey, which was conducted to obtain a current and comprehensive view of the industry. The results show a significant increase in interest in dairy goat and sheep operations in New York State over the past decade. The survey was initiated in response to the dramatic increase in dairy goats last reported in the 2002 Census of Agriculture. In 2002, USDA reported 1,146 farms in New York having 12,822 dairy goats. This represents a 68 percent increase over the 5,000 dairy goats counted in 1997. Dairy sheep are not counted in the National Census, however anecdotal observations indicate increases in these operations as well. (Jan 10, 2007)  New York State News on the Net!
  • MPNnow.com: Energy, development and politics Electricity will flood the school district in the early part of the year and elections will dominate in late 2007. EAST ROCHESTER – From the hum of electricity at the school to neighborhood development – several issues that made headlines in 2006 will see print again as East Rochester moves through 2007. When the switch is finally flipped sometime in January, the East Rochester school district will be generating its own electricity. In October, a roughly 16-ton fuel cell was placed in the outdoor courtyard area in front of the school. The cell — which is 10 feet long, 18 feet wide and 10 feet high — goes through a process that converts natural gas into electricity. (Jan. 4, 2007) MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • MPNnow.com: South Bristol's Wesley Hill Nature Preserve grows A Canadice resident has sold 32 acres to the Finger Lakes Land Trust. SOUTH BRISTOL — The Wesley Hill Nature Preserve now spans nearly 400 acres and includes a portion of one of the region's largest gorges, thanks to an Ontario County family. The Finger Lakes Land Trust announced this week it has purchased 32 acres from Canadice resident Don Schenkel. (Jan. 5, 2007) MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • MPNnow.com: Why is it so warm? Storms in the West have been getting headlines, but even more puzzling are record highs in the East tied to something called the North Atlantic Oscillation.  Is global warming responsible? Some experts are zeroing in on a seesaw climate pattern that occurs over the North Atlantic, called the North Atlantic Oscillation or NAO — less publicly known than El Nińo, and certainly less understood.  MPNnow.com: Rochester and Western Finger Lakes News, Entertainment, Sports, Opinions, Photos and More
  • Henrietta adds a new park - Features of the 71-acre park include trails, a picnic shelter — HENRIETTA — Residents will soon have 71 acres to enjoy along the Genesee River at a new town park. The park, tentatively called Riverfront Park, is just south of Scottsville-West Henrietta Road, near the Riverton Golf Course. It will feature trails, a picnic shelter and at least one playground, but no ball fields. "Maybe there will be some little ponds along the way, possibly a boat launch along the river," said town Supervisor Jim Breese. For close to three years, officials have been planning to acquire the land, but the deal was sealed just last month. (January 8, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Fairport Electric rewards customers for using Energy Star appliances - News - MSNBC.com If you buy or switch old appliances to Energy Star labeled appliances within the year, you can receive a rebate from the village anywhere from $80 to $2,000 per customer. "We not only want to get people to buy appliances that are more efficient, but we are also trying to get people to replace old. Less energy-efficient appliances earlier than other wise," said Ken Moore, village administrator. (January 07, 2006)
  • Canine Quarantine in Wayne County - 13WHAM.com Kyle Clark (East Williamson, N.Y.) -- Wayne County supervisors have laid down quarantine for dogs. They must be kept indoors or under control 24 hours a day between now and mid-April. The law is designed to protect the county's deer population and ensure a better hunt next season. 13WHAM: Local News (RSS 2.0)
  • Windfarm opponents to get day in court ROCHESTER - Opponents of proposed wind farm projects in the town of Prattsburgh will have their day in court. The state Appellate Court recently ruled against a motion to dismiss a lawsuit against the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency by the Advocates for Prattsburgh. The Advocates allege SCIDA did not adequately review environmental information provided by wind farm developer EcoGen before the board gave the review its final approval late last year. Steuben Courier
  • Researchers Will Work With Cellulosic Ethanol Plant Susan Powers, associate dean for Research and Graduate Studies at Clarkson's Coulter School of Engineering, was paying special attention today when Governor Pataki announced that $24 million was being awarded to two companies for the development and construction of the state's first cellulosic ethanol plants. That's because Powers and other environmental researchers and students at Clarkson will participate in the project with Mascoma Corporation, one of the companies receiving the state funding. Mascoma, with the help of a $14 million grant from the governor, will build a 500,000-gallon-a-year cellulosic ethanol pilot facility in Greece, near Rochester. (January 06, 07) Energy News from EnergyDaily.com
  • Weird warmth puzzles plants - With springlike temperatures and no snow cover, buds making early arrival. — As above-normal temperatures have stretched into January, the Rochester region's landscapes have been growing faster and without their usual insulating blanket of white. That creates an unusual dynamic for plants and wildlife. (January 6, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Warmth Brings Out The Buds - Most Januaries, we don't expect to see the kinds of things one will notice on a walk through Highland Park. But a much warmer-than-usual winter means flowers are flowering, and buds on trees and shrubs are budding. (January 5, 2007) R News: As It Happens, Where It Happens
  • Green Party to meet Monday— The Green Party of Monroe County’s annual meeting is at 7 p.m. Monday in the fifth-floor conference room, Auditorium Center, 875 E. Main St., Rochester. (January 5, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Recycle your tree and improve nature park’s trails — People can recycle their Christmas trees from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Tinker Nature Park, 1525 Calkins Road. The mulch generated will be used on the park’s nature trail. (January 5, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • Water bureau opens a 'green' building — Old public works buildings that stood more than 70 years along Felix Street have been ground into inch-diameter rubble of brick and concrete and now lie just below the surface of the new Water Bureau Operations Center. "We had a huge mountain of this recyclable material," said Michael Bushart, senior engineer in the city's water bureau. "That became the foundation material for either the parking lot, the building, or some backfill." Reuse of the old structures is one reason the new center could become the first municipal building in Rochester recognized for outstanding design by the U.S. Green Building Council. Bushart said the city will submit its application later this month for certification as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold project. (January 5, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle
  • PoughkeepsieJournal.com - State to host meeting on fish virus NEW PALTZ - The Department of Environmental Conservation will host a meeting Thursday to present information and answer questions about the wild fish disease, viral hemorrhagic septicemia. The virus is a pathogen of fish and does not pose any threat to public health. Relatively common in continental Europe and Japan, prior to 2003 the disease was limited in North America to marine species in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. In freshwater, VHS had been associated primarily with trout and salmon. Formal public comments on the draft regulation will not be accepted during the informational meetings. The draft rulemaking is available at http://www.dec.state.ny.us/website/dfwmr/propregs . Public comments can be submitted to DEC by writing to: Shaun Keeler, NYSDEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4750; or by calling DEC at (518) 402-8920.
  • Rochester - The new ethanol: hope or hype? - Rochester gets in on the next big thing in biofuels - News & Opinion - News articles - City Newspaper Energy -It's the holy grail of renewable-energy research: a liquid fuel that can be harvested sustainably, burned cleanly, and doesn't come from an unstable part of the world. And maybe, just maybe, it will be manufactured at a plant near you. The fuel in question is ethanol. Specifically, cellulosic ethanol. Ethanol is an alcohol made from fermenting sugar that can be burned as a fuel in internal combustion engines. Rochester - News, Music, Restaurants, Events, Arts and Entertainment Newspaper - City Newspaper
  • Officials to discuss VHS virus - With all the phenomenal fishing in nearby Great Lakes waters, the biggest fishing story for 2007 begins with a public informational session on Viral Hemorrhagic Septicemia (VHS) to start the new year. The Department of Environmental Conservation has arranged a series of informational meetings statewide, with Western New York sessions to be held for Region 8 in the Holiday Inn at Waterloo on Wednesday and Region 9 at Woodlawn Beach State Park in Hamburg on Jan. 8. Both meetings are set for 7-9 p.m. The Buffalo News
  • Where's winter? El Nińo said to cause startling warmth in East — Maybe Rochester's winter hitched a ride out of town on the high-speed ferry. Regardless, winter weather has been notably absent. Last month, the Rochester area saw the least amount of snowfall of any December on record with the National Weather Service going back to 1940. (January 4, 2007) Democrat & Chronicle

 

 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 January 2007:

  • 02/01/07 - Check out wind power events for this month at: wind events and actions
  • 01/27/07 - How Green is your College? It cannot be overstressed that our planet’s environment is undergoing an extraordinary change. The students of today are going to be living in a vastly different environment than their parents because of environmental change due to Global Warming, pollution, loss of biodiversity and much more. So, it makes a lot of sense that their learning environment, their colleges and universities, reflect the major change in attitude that is going to be necessary for the students of today to live in a sustainable world. Check out: College Sustainability Report Card by Sustainable Endowments Institutes.
  • 01/26/07 -- Getting ready for the a major Global Warming Report: Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change "Climate Change 2007"
  • 1/25/07 - New Environmental site: Genesee Valley Chapter of Pheasants Forever Our mission statement is to improve pheasant populations via habitat restoration projects in the six county area surrounding Rochester, NY.
  • 01/21/07-- **GOOD/BAD IDEAS**  Pandemic Flu Plan In Monroe County Too often environmental issues descend into a dismal political morass--like Global Warming, renewable energy, and cleaning up the Great Lakes--making wide-spread solutions impossible. For example, there is no chance of the United States choosing sustainable practices that would address Global Warming if leaders don't even believe in the concept of Global Warming. (Former Ranking Member James Inhofe R-Okla of the Environment & Public Works had said that Global Warming was a hoax.)

    Thankfully, most have 'Got it' that the possibility of a pandemic flu is as serious as an environmental health problem gets. The reality of thousands, perhaps a hundred thousand deaths worldwide in the 1918-19 Spanish flu did the convincing. Read Flu: The Story Of The Great Influenza Pandemic by Gina Kolata if you harbor any doubts about the most catastrophic single disease outbreak in human history. The Black Plague killed a larger percentage of a 14th century population, but not more people.

    So our government (the Monroe County Government) and business (Wegmans) joining in a program to prepare for the possibility of such an outbreak is good news and a great thoughtful policy. It isn’t about panic and Chicken Little. A pandemic flu hitting our area, as it had during 1919, and being able this time around to do something practical to prevent widespread death is a reality. Most probably a pandemic flu will hit fast and die quickly. The best prevention is probably holding tight (staying out of contact for awhile with large groups) until the disease is identified, isolated, and allowed to perish on its own. That can be done most effectively by informing an entire community as the program outlined by County Executive Maggie Brooks does. And that Wegmans, our community’s largest grocer would chip in and help distribute the pamphlets to inform as many people as possible is such a great idea that I double-dog dare all markets and all stores to pick up the idea and help out.

    I think this program outlined by our County Executive offers a model on how we should anticipate many of our environmental problems: don’t wait around doing nothing until a potential disaster strikes, but wisely plan ahead and make it clear to the public what their part in such a disaster will be. How different the Iraq War might have been had George W. Bush told the American People back when he started the war that the American people must pitch in and at least engage their attention, instead of just asking us to go shopping.

  • 01/19/07 -- **GOOD/BAD IDEAS**   If it sounds too good to be true…

    Harnessing power from a landfill sounds like the perfect solution to waste management and our present energy crisis and Global Warming. And while I believe that all of our Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks reasons why getting power from the Riga Landfill are good, there is a major problem with trying to solve our energy problems by capturing and utilizing methane gases that naturally accompany landfills. This concept presents to the public an illusion that it has conceived of an idea that solves some of our major problems. But, what it really does is continue landfills as waste management and produces no immediate concern in the public’s mind that we have a waste and resource problem.

    In other words, hailing this present program as a solution to waste management and energy allows the public to believe that landfills are OK. They are not. Landfills, as a by-product, do produce some methane gas. Methane gas pound per pound is many times more effective at trapping heat from the sun and adding to the Global Warming problem, so untapped it will go into the atmosphere and continue to the problem of man-made climate change. But, landfills also put into the grounds tons and tons of toxic chemicals from human-made products that eventually go into our atmosphere and ground. Much of the toxic waste takes a long time to become inert causing further problems down the road when landfill are covered over and building built upon it.

    It is a better idea to slowly get rid of the idea of landfills and instead find ways to recycle those things we toss into them. Recycling our waste—organic, furniture, plastics, aluminum, etc.—would provide a wealth of resources for businesses, instead of having to further deplete our natural resources. So, in the short term, shunting methane gas into an energy source instead of letting it go into our atmosphere is a good idea, but only if it is part of a process that eventually leads to major efforts to recycle.

    With American ingenuity most, if not all, the thing we throw away can probable be reused and done so at a fraction of the cost of digging (say aluminum) out of the ground. If we continue to hail landfills as an energy source we are deluding ourselves that we have found an easy fix to the problems of pollution, Brownfields (which many used-up landfills become), and energy—and we have not.

  • 1/15/07 - I hope that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - Protecting NY's Environment and Managing its Natural Resources  is also going to be doing a conference on our area about the likely consequences of Global Warming. In the meantime, check out the results of such a conference for the Hudson Valley—just down the NYS Thruway from us.  Hudson Valley Climate Change Conference, December 4, 2006 "Summary: A panel of Hudson Valley scientists named below presented the next section of the program. They discussed the impacts of predicted local changes in climate including: Increasing average annual temperatures Decreasing snow cover Increasing number and extent of short term droughts Increasing number of extreme precipitation events (e.g. heavy rainfall in a short period of time) Rising water levels in the Hudson River due to sea level rise"
  • 1/15/07 - Although you have to search around a bit on the Monroe County web site, you can find extensive environmental information if you land on this page about all these categories  on our  Environmental Health | Public Health Asbestos - Aerial Photographs - Animal Bites and Rabies - Annual Water Quality - reports - Bird Flu and Pandemic Flu - Building Air Quality - Bulk and Bottled Water - supply - Campgrounds - Children’s Camps - Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Program - Chrome Copper Arsenate (CCA) - Citizen Action - Combustion Pollutants - Commercial On-Site Sewage Disposal Systems - Community WaterWatch (Volunteer Stream Monitoring) - Construction Model Ordinance - Construction Inspection Training - CPR Certifications - Cross Connection Control - Dead Crow Report Form - Environmental Management Council (EMC) - Environmental Site Assessment Requests - Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) - Food Protection - Food Service Establishment -Permits - Food Worker Certification - Formaldehyde - Foster Care Pediatrics - Hazardous - Material Incidents - Household Products - Housing and General Sanitation - Immunization Program - Individual Sewage Treatment and Disposal - Indoor Air and Toxics Control - Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) - Lead Poisoning Prevention - Lifeguard Certifications - Lyme Disease - Maps and Reference Publications - Mobile Home Parks Mold - Noise - Occupational Health - Outdoor Air/Control of Open Burning - Pandemic Flu and Bird Flu - Pesticide Neighbor Notification Law - Pollution Prevention - Pressure Treated Wood Products - Private Water Supply - Public Sanitary Sewer - Public Swimming Pools and Bathing Beaches - Public Water Supply - Rabies and Animal Bites Radiological Health - Radon - Realty Subdivision and Development On Public Utilities - Rodent Control - Smoking Code - Spray Grounds Regulations - STD/HIV Disease Control Program - Stormwater Coalition - Stormwater Regulations - Subdivisions - Swimming at Ontario Beach - Temporary Residences and Institutions - Tobacco (Adolescent Tobacco Use Prevention Act) - Toxics Control - Tuberculosis - Waste Site Database - Water Education Collaborative - Watershed Management - Watershed Maps Water Quality Coordinating Committee - Water Quality Management Agency - Water Supply Reports for Monroe County Suppliers - West Nile Virus - Wetlands
  • 1/15/07 - What is the state of our health in NYS and what environmental factors are affecting our health? Check out this page Health in New York from Trust for America's Health
  • 1/10/07 - Wind Power, I believe, is the energy future for New York State. I find that most of the arguments against Wind Farms to be selfish and ill-informed and in denial about the true threat of Global Warming. But, everyone should have their voice and I’ve come across this blog, where those who are interested in arguing the merits for and against Wind Farms nearby can have their voice. I’m always for open discussion about important environmental issues. So, Check out: Cohocton Wind Watch Cohocton Wind Watch is a community citizen organization dedicated to preserve the public safety, property values, economic viability, environmental integrity and quality of life in Cohocton, NY and in surrounding townships. Neighbors committed to public service in order to achieve a reasonable vision for a Finger Lakes region worthy of future generations.
  • 1/08/07 -- News Archive and Updates Archives are both complete! Both of these pages reflect what has gone on daily here at RochesterEnvironment.com which has provided environmental links to environmental stories in our area and the various ways I have tried to make the Internet work for our environment since 1998. They are an interesting chronicle of the development and evolution of this site and also, because the Internet is always ‘searchable’ anyone, anywhere will be able to follow environmental events as I have chronicled them over the years.
  • 1/05/07 - **MY THOUGHTS** The Real Deal  - Ripping good time biking in June-like weather yesterday (Jan. 4th), except that niggling feeling that something was wrong. Our weather’s out of whack. I shouldn’t be biking: I should be shuffling through three feet of snow. People shouldn’t have been out running without their shirts on and homeowners should not have been mowing their lawns. Learning that El Nińo might be the cause (from Wednesday’s Where's winter? 1/04/07 D&C article) didn’t allay my concern because El Nińo itself is caused by warm winds blowing across warm oceans, which are warming because the artic is losing snow and ice, which is changing the albedo effects of a white snowy surface which reflects sunlight to a blue-water surface, which absorbs heat.

    Anyway, accepting Global Warming into your life is not faith-based thinking. It’s the real deal. It’s thinking about how your children’s children may have to live their lives. Most scientists now consider the present rapid Global Warming trend man-made, only the fringe element is on the fence. And, it matters that you understand and discover evidence that present warming trend is due to mankind because then and only then will you will believe that it is possible to slow the effects.

    Not accepting Global warming and convincing yourself that the warming since the 1970’s is only a fluke, mass hysteria, or destructive thinking that will only upset people and businesses (remember, that was Bush’s argument for flip-flopping on the Kyoto Protocol) is denial. Denial is allowing the present lie to go on so your life won’t be disrupted, thus delaying the consequences to another time.

    There’s only one problem with denying Nature: She doesn’t play mind games. When carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gasses grow in higher concentrations in our atmosphere, they absorb more heat and the atmosphere warms up. Global Warming is represented on graphs as a saw-toothed line, meaning an area like ours will be warm some years and cold some others, though the overall trend is warming. And, warm doesn’t mean fun in the sun. Warm means change, perhaps more than we can handle.

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 February 2007 and beyond:  

 

When

What

Where

Thursday, February 8th, 7:15pm

Climbing the Great Mountains A program on conquering the highest mountain on each of seven continents

Thursday, February 8th, 7:15pm, Brighton Town Hall

Kevin Flynn, an unassuming sort of man, is just back from reaching his goal of climbing the highest peak on each of the seven continents in the world – including Mt. Everest, Mt. Denali and Mt. Vinson in the Antarctic. He will tell us about his experiences and illustrate his adventures with video clips, slides and a DVD. Kevin is one of the owners and a partner of Martino Flynn LLC in Pittsford, a firm known for excellence in creative and public relations.

Brighton Town Hall 2300 Elmwood Ave Rochester, NY 14618-2145
Monday, Feb. 12, at 7:30 p.m. The windmill hearing is set for Monday, Feb. 12, at 7:30 p.m. at the Town Hall, 5949 County Road 37. Copies of the proposal are available at the Town Hall. --from MPNnow.com: Canadice: This may be the year for zoning Dividing the town into districts is the supervisor’s top goal for 2007. CANADICE — Canadice, the only town in Ontario County without zoning, could divide itself into three districts this year, said Supervisor Bonnie Drake. (Jan 29, 07) Messenger Post Newspapers Town Hall, 5949 County Road 37
Sunday, February 11 from 2-4 pm WATERSHED: A COMMUNITY CARES FOR ITS LAND Christine Sevilla www.luminguild.com  (galleries and artist statements under Visual Art link) 585 586 6085 - cs@luminguild.com  project information at www.luminguild.com/water 

Rochester, NY: On Sunday, February 11 from 2-4 pm., a presentation of WATERSHED: A COMMUNITY CARES FOR ITS LAND will be offered in the Central Library of Rochester & Monroe County's Kate Gleason Auditorium. This local effort to preserve area wetlands takes the form of a multi-faceted project which includes a traveling art display, news forums, multimedia presentations as well as two published books: a reference guidebook listing local wetlands and trails, and a catalog of the art exhibit. The exhibit includes over 200 images of local wetlands displayed as perceptual environments. Thirteen handmade artist's books are also featured in the exhibit, which has traveled throughout Upstate New York. Sunday's presentation will feature music, images, and the opportunity to review the handmade books. June Summers, President of the Genesee Valley Audubon Society, is enthusiastic about the energy of this multi-year project. "This is truly out-of-the-box thinking that we need to bring wetlands habitat to the public's attention." The presentation will combine information about wetlands and invasive plants with a description of her projects. The program is free and open to the public. Simply Crępes Café, located across the hall from the Kate Gleason Auditorium, will present an array of luncheon choices, desserts and beverages. Consider purchasing a "Crępes to Go" lunchbox to eat in the auditorium during the presentation!

The Central Library, located at 115 South Avenue, is open from 1 - 5 p.m. on Sunday. Parking is free at the Court Street Garage.

The art exhibit and handmade books will be on display at the Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County in the "Lower Link Gallery" through February 22, 2007.

The Central Library, located at 115 South Avenue, is open from 1 - 5 p.m. on Sunday. Parking is free at the Court Street Garage.
Monday, February 12, at 7 pm

Sierra Club Book Study Group  "

The purpose of the group is to broaden our understanding of environmental problems and solutions based on our reading of current books on these issues.  Next Meeting: Monday, February 12, at 7 pm at the Friends' Meeting House, 84 Scio St. We have chosen to read, by the author of The End of Nature, Hope, Human and Wild: True Stories of Living Lightly on the Earth, by Bill McKibben

 

Friends' Meeting House, 84 Scio St. The Friends Meeting House is bit south of the intersection of Scio and E. Main St. The entrance is on Charlotte St., around the corner from Scio. Parking is OK on the street there at night. The East End parking garage, right across Scio, is free at night.
Tues, Feb. 6, 6:30-8:30 pm  Is There Reason for Concern? Explanations of A Preliminary Water Quality Study of Selected Finger Lakes - Tues, Feb. 6, 6:30-8:30 pm Livesay Conference Room, Human Services Building, 320 West State Street, Ithaca -Residents and policy makers are invited to this program on the complex threats facing the Finger Lakes. John Halfman, Professor of Geoscience at Hobart and William Smith Colleges will summarize his preliminary investigation of water quality indicators from the seven central Finger Lakes, Honeoye, Canandaigua, Keuka, Seneca, Cayuga, Owasco, and Skaneateles Lakes, and reveal potential linkages between water quality and water quality protection legislation. All of the Finger Lakes are listed as threatened, stressed, or impaired by New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Halfmans presentation will be followed up an update on water quality monitoring planned by local groups including the Tompkins County Water Resources Council and the Watershed Network, the co-sponsors of the event. Tony Ingraham owlgorge@earthlink.net http://www.cayugalake.org/news/events.php - To register for any of these programs, please contact the Watershed Network at manager@cayugalake.org or 607-532-4104.  Livesay Conference Room, Human Services Building, 320 West State Street, Ithaca
The new deadline for comments is March 13, 2007.  **ACTION**  It’s worthwhile to take a few moments and weigh in on Global Warming measure to be taken in our state.  DEC Issues Preliminary Draft RGGI Proposal for Public Review DEC Issues Preliminary Draft RGGI Proposal for Public Review The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released a preliminary draft set of rules to implement the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in New York State. The proposal represents the first step toward completing implementation of this landmark program to help address the challenge of climate change in New York and the Northeast.  -More : DEC extends public comment period on key global warming policy - The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Wednesday announced that it is providing the public an additional 60 days to offer their comments on a preliminary global warming rule that will reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants - a major contributor to global warming. The new deadline for comments is March 13, 2007. Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, seven Northeast states agreed to implement a cap-and-trade program that will be the first mandatory cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gas pollution in United States history. A preliminary draft regulatory proposal was released by DEC on December 5, 2006. The additional time will allow more New Yorkers to offer their views on this critical issue. (Jan 11, 2007) New York State News on the Net! Click here: DEC extends public comment period on key global warming policy
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
 

**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 February 2007:

  • **ACTION**  It’s worthwhile to take a few moments and weigh in on Global Warming measure to be taken in our state.  DEC Issues Preliminary Draft RGGI Proposal for Public Review DEC Issues Preliminary Draft RGGI Proposal for Public Review The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has released a preliminary draft set of rules to implement the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) in New York State. The proposal represents the first step toward completing implementation of this landmark program to help address the challenge of climate change in New York and the Northeast.  -More : DEC extends public comment period on key global warming policy - The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Wednesday announced that it is providing the public an additional 60 days to offer their comments on a preliminary global warming rule that will reduce carbon dioxide emissions from power plants - a major contributor to global warming. The new deadline for comments is March 13, 2007. Under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, seven Northeast states agreed to implement a cap-and-trade program that will be the first mandatory cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gas pollution in United States history. A preliminary draft regulatory proposal was released by DEC on December 5, 2006. The additional time will allow more New Yorkers to offer their views on this critical issue. (Jan 11, 2007) New York State News on the Net!

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.

  • RochesterAlliance.org  When you join this e-mail based EVENT/ACTION ANNOUNCEMENT listserv you will be part of a growing community of activists that share important EVENTS & ACTIONS around our community with each other. The “Rochester” ANNOUNCE email list is a web network of activists committed to sharing information about upcoming EVENTS/ACTIONS. The moderator passes event information on to literally HUNDREDS of local activists like you! It’s easy to join. Just click here and write: subscribe ANNOUNCE and then write your name or nickname or handle in the subject or body of the message. All three elements must be in the body of the message or the subscription request will not be accepted. Learn more about the “Rochester” ANNOUNCE list by clicking here. Details Rochester List.

 

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