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april 2006

RochesterEnvironment.com’s Newsletter

April 2006

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

Go to: News - What's New?- Events of the Month - Actions to take - Site of the Month

 

 

         Highlights of the April 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 issues this month of April 06:   My hot story for this April 2006 is Monroe County getting a failing grade from the American Lung Association for our county's ozone problem.  The strange thing is that industrial ozone has gone down, but because the number of vehicles on our highways has increased--so has our ozone.  This issue, which has dogged our county for years, could have grave implications: people getting sick, highway funds and industry decreased, and even lower visibility.  This story may be balanced somewhat with a report by the Environmental Protection Agency EPA that "Chemical Releases to Air and Water Drop Drastically in New York for 1998 to 2004--this is according to the EPA's Toxics Release Inventory (TRI).  But in my mind, if we are to have faith that we can trust the findings of the EPA's TRI program then there should be no cutting of those industry's who should have to report and setting limits on toxic releases that are reported.  If the EPA wants the public to trust its TRI findings then it should now lower the bar as to what size industry must report and what toxic releases industries must report.  Finally, there are many stories this month about Energy, especially wind energy.  This issue--should New York State allow more wind turbines?--is going to be with us for a long time and we will eventually have come to a consensus about how the Northeast is going to aid in the production of clean, renewable energy. At present it is a very contentious issue.

    * Other Hot Environmental issues this month: One of the largest efforts I have seen in cleaning up Rochester is our new Mayor Duffy's Clean Sweep Program.  For six weeks this spring, beginning on April 17th, neighborhood by neighborhood is going to be transformed by a big clean up.  Of course, this is a trash and lawn debris cleanup, and not a wholesale brownfields, or stormwater pollution, or Durand Eastman Beach cleanup that are in this month's news also, but it is significant and shows our community that our mayor is serious about cleaning up.  I hope this program stays with us year after year until people just put trash in the right place and recycle.

    * The silent stories [important stories we didn't hear much about]:  You've heard about it by now.  Global Warming is big, really big. So ten state Attorneys General are suing the EPA for "failing to adopt strong emission standards to reduce air pollution from new power plants across the nation." Also, the New York State Department of Heath reminds us that we are going into Lyme Disease season and so we must remember how to prevent tick bites.  Come to think of it, it's also time to begin thinking about West Nile Disease. 

    * On-Going Concerns: I'm always watching for stories pertaining to the new Monroe County 48 Hour Neighborhood Notification Law.  It took a long time coming to get this important NYS law passed in Monroe County, and I was very hopeful that last month Monroe County put up extensive information on how lawn care companies, landlords, retailers, and private citizens could comply with this law.  But, lingering over this progress is a report by the D&C that many homeowners are not complying with this law.  As the law becomes established in this county we are hoping that more learn about the regulations, as after a preliminary grace period fines are given to those who refuse to comply.  Another lawn story concerns the Great Lawns Great Lakes Program and Cornell cooperative Extension of Monroe County.  Learn basic principles of lawn care and understand that your lawn as part of our area's ecology.  Also, another township adopts the Monroe County Water Authority as their water supplier, a dire prediction that the Great Lakes is past a biological 'tipping' point in, a big attempt to get salmon back into Lake Ontario, and there's a big push in NYS to get trees planted with a comprehensive Urban Forestry update.

     * Environmental Action you can take for our area: New York State Election Law says that in order for political parties to maintain ballot status, it must have at least 50,000 votes in each gubernatorial election. For the major, corporate-driven parties, this is easy. For independent, third-parties this is more difficult.  This month we ask that you pay particular attention to the ballot status of the Green Party and David Atais will give you specific instructions on how to get the Green Party back on on the ballot in New York State.

    * Environmental events going on this month: Last month was filled with many Earth Day events around town, described in this edition and this month, as the weather turns nicer, there's not as many.  But, there is always something going on.

    * Rochester-area Environmental Site of the Month Adopt-A-Stream Delta Laboratories, Inc. , 1820 East Ave, Rochester , NY 14610 (716) 242-2400, Adopt-A-Stream is an interdisciplinary program where teachers and students adopt a waterway and do chemical, physical, biological and microbiological testing to determine water quality. Teachers can select any projects and activities from the Teacher's Guide that best meet their students' capabilities, and materials available to the teacher. Some teachers find that enlisting a community cosponsor to aid them in their efforts is quite valuable.

      

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 April 2006:

  •  Energy answer may be blowing in the wind - Meeting explores lake turbine viability - A year ago, the idea of putting wind turbines out in the open waters of Lake Erie to generate electricity seemed like just another item on a renewable energy buff's wish list. Today, there are signs of momentum building. The latest was an all-day summit yesterday at the Wyndham Hotel in downtown Toledo, the first of its kind that the U.S. Department of Energy has organized for the Great Lakes region. About 200 people - many of them state and federal employees - came together to exchange research into the viability of offshore wind power in the lakes. - (April 05, 2006) - toledoblade.com -
  •  State Health Commissioner Novello Speaks At State Senate Legislative Hearing On Long Island Dr. Novello Says Pandemic Flu Plan Serves as Blueprint to Build Strong Response to a Flu Pandemic with State Agencies, Counties and Health Care Providers ALBANY, March 10, 2006 – State Health Commissioner Antonia C. Novello, M.D., M.P.H., Dr.P.H., today presented details on the State Health Department's comprehensive Influenza Pandemic Plan at a State Legislative Hearing in Mineola, New York (see Dr. Novello's remarks below). The hearing on the State's preparation for a potential pandemic was held by the New York State Senate Committee on Health and the Committee on Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs. Many facets of the State Health Department's plan are already in place as part of the State's overall emergency preparedness efforts to protect the health of all New Yorkers. New York's plan parallels the recently announced national strategy for pandemic influenza released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The State's plan addresses New York's unique characteristics such as demographics; population density; and international borders; as well as public health and health care systems capacities. New York State Department of Health
  •  Welcome to the Great Lawns Great Lakes Program Cornell Cooperative Extension of Monroe County, with financial support from the Stormwater Coalition, coordinates an environmentally friendly lawn care education program for homeowners known as Great Lawns/Great Lakes. Through this program, a team of highly trained Master Gardener volunteers teach classes for homeowners on how they can maintain an attractive lawn and reduce stormwater pollution. The classes are scheduled upon request in municipal libraries, town and village halls, retail stores, and at meetings of community groups. For information about upcoming classes or to request a presentation, contact Margo Bauer, Cornell Cooperative Extension, 461-1000 ext. 230 or mcd25@cornell.edu --from Monroe County
  •  How Citizens Can Help Reduce Stormwater Pollution - The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has determined that the majority of the remaining water quality problems in the State are the result of stormwater runoff and and other types of nonpoint source pollution. The towns and villages that comprise the Stormwater Coalition of Monroe County are working together to reduce stormwater pollution from new construction, roadway maintenance operations, and other sources over which they have some control. However, the Coalition needs your help to reduce stormwater pollution from activities such as the illegal dumping of household hazardous wastes or motor oil into storm drains and improper lawn care practices. There are many opportunities for homeowners, families, students, and groups to become involved in local efforts to reduce stormwater pollution such as storm drain stenciling, distributing educational materials (door hangers) within neighborhoods, stream monitoring, and attending environmentally friendly lawn care training sessions. For information about how you or your group can become involved, contact us at 753-5472 or 753-5468. --from Monroe County
  •  Great Lakes Lawmakers Unveil Restoration Bill $20 billion federal act would fix lakes, boost region’s economy By Andy Guy Great Lakes Bulletin News Service - www.truecolorearth.com  Proponents of Great Lakes restoration say their proposal would affect 20 percent of the planet’s fresh water and hasten the region’s transition to a modern, more prosperous economy. WASHINGTON DC—Four months after Great Lakes leaders officially unveiled a $20 billion plan to revive the health of their region’s troubled waterways and distressed economy, a bipartisan coalition of Congressional lawmakers officially introduced legislation on Wednesday that would kick off the effort, which one U.S. senator said is “the biggest restoration project in the world.” The proposed Great Lakes Collaboration Implementation Act would direct public investments to some of the nation’s bedrock cities—Chicago, Cleveland, Detroit, Milwaukee, Gary, Ind., and other blue-collar midwestern urban centers. (April 7, 2006) Michigan Land Use Institute: Making Smart Growth a Reality In Michigan
  •  Golisano lays out alternative wind plan: Proposal says community project could make $125,000 per turbine annually  - ARKPORT - A community-based wind farm would be a cash cow for the community. That was the message at a meeting Thursday night at the Arkport Central School Performing Arts Center, arranged by Hartsville resident Steve Dombert. Dombert was initially opposed to any wind farm coming to Hartsville, but is now urging the town board to look at a community-owned project. (April 7, 2006) Hornell Evening Tribune Online
  •  Lawsuit filed to halt wind turbines - Residents challenge environmental review in Yates and Steuben — Local people who argue that wind turbines do not belong in the residential neighborhoods that dot the hills of Steuben and Yates counties filed suit Friday in hopes of stopping the construction of 53 turbines in the towns of Prattsburg and Italy. A group called Advocates for Prattsburg is formally challenging the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency's December decision to approve an environmental impact statement prepared by wind turbine developer Ecogen LLC. - (April 8, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Kodak falcon lays 6 eggs, a record - Mariah, the female peregrine falcon that nests atop Eastman Kodak Co.'s State Street office building, has laid a record six eggs. Average falcon nests range between two and five eggs, though some have included as many as seven. Chicks hatch about a month after the last egg is laid. (April 7, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Bill seeks $10 billion to clean Great Lakes - Lake Ontario's perpetually polluted shores will benefit if lawmakers approve a federal bill to direct $10 billion to cleaning up the Great Lakes. Introduced Wednesday, the Great Lakes Collaboration Implementation Act would provide funding for a broad Great Lakes cleanup plan drafted over the past three years. Authors of the plan had originally called for $20 billion from all levels of government over 10 to 15 years to complete their work. (April 6, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  City Newspaper: News & Views: News articles: No problemo? Rochester and the decline of cheap oil When James Howard Kunstler's first book, "The Geography of Nowhere," came out in 1994, talk about running out of oil was akin to talk about that fake moon landing. Crackpots, oil executives, and every undergraduate geology student in the county knew we were approaching the peak of worldwide oil production, but most people had better things to worry about. Most still do. James Howard Kunstler: "We won't run the interstate highway system on bio diesel or second-hand French-fry potato oil. That's wishful thinking." Clarke Condé Almost immediately after his book was published, Kunstler become the go-to guy for biting criticism of America's built environment. His four non-fiction books and popular blog (The Clusterfuck Nation Chronicle) have focused on the unsustainable aspects of our culture. Like a revival preacher, he has railed against what he sees as our asinine insistence on constructing car-dependent sprawl and our blindness toward our impending energy problems. His message is to repent while there is still time. City Newspaper
  •  Braddock Bay Raptor Research celebrates spring migration  A Bald eagle, a Broad-winged hawk and a Turkey vulture are just three of the raptors that will help celebrate spring migration over Braddock Bay April 15 to 23. Braddock Bay Raptor Research (BBRR) is sponsoring its 18th annual celebration of Bird of Prey Week (BOP) in and around Braddock Bay Park, its lodge and its hawkwatching platform. Throughout the week, there will be numerous opportunities for people to get a close-up view of some of the majestic birds. There will be weekday programs for kids, and two full weekends of hikes, tours, presentations and activities for the whole family. Westside News Inc.
  •  Parks primped as weather warms — As pleasant weather beckons people outdoors, workers are busy preparing the parks for spring and summer use. There's plenty of work to be done, too, despite a mild winter by Rochester's standards. (April 12, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Will beach be OK to dip in? - Cost, safety cloud Duffy's Durand-Eastman idea — Questions about safety, expense and water quality hang over Mayor Robert Duffy's proposal to reopen Durand-Eastman beach for swimming this summer. An internal team at City Hall began analyzing these and other questions inherent in the project this week, and Deputy Mayor Patty Malgieri said she expects a draft report next week. Once the city has a grasp on details, she said, officials will move quickly to involve Monroe County and the town of Irondequoit in seeking state money to help pay for improvements. (April 12, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  County urged to OK Riga landfill measures — The Monroe County Legislature will consider two measures today that will affect the Mill Seat Landfill in Riga. County Executive Maggie Brooks wants lawmakers to approve a lease agreement with Waste Management Renewable Energy LLC to develop a landfill facility to operate and market energy produced in the landfill. The proposal calls for a public hearing before finalizing the lease agreement. (April 11, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Naples to sue windfarm? - Messenger Post staff NAPLES - The Village Board will likely vote next week whether to join Advocates for Prattsburgh in its suit to halt a 53-turbine windfarm in neighboring Prattsburgh.  (April 11, 2006) Daily Messenger
  •  Decision on Hamlin/Kendall water drawing near Officials from the towns of Hamlin and Kendall met with residents on March 30 in Kendall to conduct another public hearing on the proposal to switch from the Hamlin/Kendall Water Department to Monroe County Water Authority (MCWA). "There were about 58 people at the meeting to hear the presentation," Hamlin Supervisor Denny Roach said. Each town was represented by its board and the opinions and comments of the residents were noted. Westside News Inc.
  • WXXI: County Issues Reminder on Pesticide Law (2006-04-12)- ROCHESTER, NY (2006-04-12) With the lawn care season arriving, Monroe County's Health Department has mailed out information packages to retailers who sell pesticides. The mailings are to remind people about the new neighbor notification law. It requires commercial pesticide applicators and homeowners who apply their own bug or weed killers to post signs on their property, alerting neighbors that chemicals have been used. wxxi NewsRoom
  •  Rochester's Clean Sweep Program - Be A Part of the Action! Help Clean Up Our Streets! Clean and attractive neighborhoods are vital to the health of our city! - “Rochester's Clean Sweep... Showing Pride in Our City” - A six-week spring clean up initiative that begins April 17 --from Welcome to the City of Rochester
  •  Rochester Clean Sweep 4/13/06 - Over the next 6 weeks Rochester is going to be in the middle of what could be the biggest clean up in its history. This morning mayor Duffy kicked off his program called Rochester Clean Sweep, Showing Pride in Our City. Each week volunteers will focus on a different section of the city by picking up trash and getting ride of graffiti. Duffy hopes to get enough volunteers to spruce up the neighborhoods by the end of next month. “Our goal is that as we arrive at Memorial Day weekend in May we can look back and from Genesee Valley Park to Charlotte we see just a fabulous clean city.” 10NBC / WHEC TV-10
  •  Lawn care law largely ignored — Many Monroe County homeowners are not complying with the county's new pesticide neighbor notification law, officials say. Under the law, homeowners who apply weed-killers and insecticides to lawn and garden areas larger than 100 square feet must post small signs informing neighbors that chemicals have been applied. In addition, the law requires retailers to post signs next to pesticides explaining the law to their customers. (April 15, 2006) Daily Messenger
  •  Veto freshens wind-power clash - Pataki move blocks takeover of 'renewables' fund — ALBANY — Among his 202 budget vetoes, Gov. George Pataki blocked a move by the Legislature to take control of grant money earmarked to spur renewable energy projects around the state. For that, environmentalists and some wind-power companies are glad. They fear that if the Legislature takes control of the approximately $20 million fund, the money could become lost in the budget shuffle — becoming just another fund for "pork-barrel" projects — and companies would be scared away from investing in the state. - (April 15, 2006) Daily Messenger
  •  Environmental Protection Agency - EPA Press Release: Chemical Releases to Air and Water Drop Drastically in New York State from 1998 to 2004 (New York, NY) The quantity of toxic chemicals released into the air and water by industry in New York State fell by more than 35%, from 50 million pounds in 1998 to a total of 31 million pounds in 2004, according to data in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) issued today. The amount of total releases, including land disposal, dropped by 8.9% in the state from 2003 to 2004. TRI provides Americans with vital information about chemicals released into their communities, and is an important instrument for industries to gauge their progress in reducing pollution. On a national level, over 23,000 facilities reported on approximately 650 chemicals for calendar year 2004. --from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  •  Area Sierra Club starts book group - Local Sierra Club members have created a book club to educate themselves about the science and politics of the environment. Their first book will be Plan B 2.0: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble by Lester Brown. The book was selected for its explanation of environmental stresses, as well as its practical solutions. All are invited to participate in two discussions, scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 25, and Tuesday, May 30, at the Brighton Public Library, 2300 Elmwood Ave., Rochester.  (April 17, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Sierra Club speakers urge change - Fears of global warming prompts call to live within limits — Antarctic ice is melting at an alarming rate, high ocean temperatures are spawning monster storms, and average global temperatures in 2005 were the warmest on record. Climate change is here, said speakers at the eighth annual Sierra Club Environmental Forum. It would be easy to become overwhelmed with hopelessness, facing a challenge with the potential to transform daily life for everyone on Earth — but emerging technology offers hope for the future if we can change our mindset, they said Thursday. (April 22, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  'Green' groups demand action — ALBANY — Environmental groups Thursday pressured the Republican-led Senate to stop holding up key conservation bills they say have statewide support. (April 21, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Monroe County: Webster & Penfield to Host Household Hazardous Waste Collection - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks announced that the County's Department of Environmental Services (DES) and the Towns of Penfield and Webster have joined forces to hold an appointment-only House Hold Hazardous Waste (HHW) collection at the Town of Penfield Highway Garage, 1607 Jackson Road, on Saturday April 29, 2006 from 8 a.m. to 12 noon...--from Monroe County
  •  Enraptured by raptors For 20 years, Braddock Bay Raptor Research has made a name for itself as it studies and celebrates birds of prey.  It's already been designated an "Important Bird Area" by the National Audubon Society. Greece Post
  •  Hamlin pulls plug on own water district operation - By a vote of three to two, Town of Hamlin officials decided to make a switch from participation in the Hamlin-Kendall Water Authority to the Monroe County Water Authority at a meeting April 10. At the April 10 board meeting, Supervisor Denny Roach said that the town had been offered an opportunity by the MCWA for a 40-year lease for the operation of the town's water system. The town has operated previously in an agreement with the Town of Kendall that has supplied water and service to residents. "This has been a difficult decision and we've labored over it," Roach said. "It seems more economically feasible to lease our services to MCWA." Westside News Inc.
  •  Wind turbine firm files complaint - ITALY — A Buffalo-area wind turbine company has filed a complaint, saying the town’s six-month extension on its wind turbine moratorium unlawfully prevents the firm from building the electricity substation it would need for its Steuben County generators. The substation that Ecogen LLC plans to build on Emerson Road is needed to connect electricity produced by the 30 wind turbine generators proposed for Prattsburg and 23 turbines proposed in Italy. Finger Lakes Times Geneva, NY
  •  Volunteers clean up Rochester - About 350 people join effort in Maplewood and Charlotte sections — Despite a persistent, cold drizzle, as many as 350 volunteers showed up Saturday for the first of six large-scale cleanups in Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy's "Clean Sweep" initiative. Wearing Day-Glo green T-shirts, the volunteers gathered under white tents at Maplewood Park to await Duffy's greeting, then fanned out in Maplewood and Charlotte, where litter and debris fluttered like leaves along roadways and in garden beds, parks and construction zones. - (April 23, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Earth Day Brings Awareness - Rising oil and gas prices were part of the focus Saturday, on the celebration of Earth Day. Other issues like global warming, endangered species, and overflowing landfill, are also in the spotlight. (April 22, 2006)  R News: As It Happens, Where It Happens
  •  Naples joins suit against wind-power project — Village leaders in Naples, Ontario County, have voted to join a lawsuit challenging a wind energy project planned for the nearby towns of Prattsburg and Italy. Ecogen LLC, a Buffalo-based developer, plans a 53-turbine project in the Steuben and Yates county communities, and has received preliminary approval from the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency, which completed an environmental review of the project in December. - (April 24, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  400 pick up 36 tons of trash - Rochester's first "Clean Sweep" to rid neighborhoods of trash, leaves and other debris netted 400 volunteers who collected 36 tons of waste near Maplewood Park. - (April 24, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  EPA commends environmental achievers in New York - In celebration of Earth Day, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Friday honored 20 individuals and organizations for their outstanding efforts to protect the environment in New York. Regional Administrator Alan Steinberg presented EPA’s Environmental Quality Awards and acknowledged winners and runners-up for the Presidents Environmental Youth Award at a ceremony in EPA offices in Manhattan. EPA selects Environmental Quality Award winners from non-profit, environmental and community groups, individual citizens, educators, business organizations and members of the news media, as well as from federal, state, local or tribal governments and agencies. The honor is given to those individuals or organizations that have made significant contributions to improving the environment in EPA Region 2, which covers New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and seven federally-recognized Indian Nations. The Agency receives nominations for the awards from both inside and outside EPA. New York State News on the Net!
  •  Empire BioFuels gets extension SENECA FALLS — Empire Biofuels missed Friday’s deadline for submitting its draft environmental impact statement — or a timeline — for its proposed ethanol plant, but town officials say they’ll still accept it when it’s submitted today or tomorrow. Supervisor Peter Same said the company didn’t meet the deadline and didn’t send the Town Board an update letter because its lawyer was out of town last week. Finger Lakes Times Geneva, NY
  •  With Great Lakes near “tipping point,” Congress urged to act Ann Arbor, Mich. – The Great Lakes Commission is urging Congress to approve the recently introduced Great Lakes Collaboration Implementation Act, now that the latter has returned from its Easter recess. The legislation would implement key recommendations of the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration to address the Great Lakes’ most pressing restoration and protection needs. “The average person on the street may not realize it, but the Great Lakes are facing a crisis,” said Tom Huntley, chair of the Great Lakes Commission. “There’s a very real concern that the combination of stresses they are facing could push them beyond a ‘tipping point’ where we could see massive and potentially irreversible damages to the Great Lakes ecosystem.” Great Lakes Commission | Commission des Grands Lacs
  •  STATES SUE EPA FOR VIOLATING CLEAN AIR ACT AND REFUSING TO ACT ON GLOBAL WARMING Ten state Attorneys General today sued the federal Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for failing to adopt strong emission standards to reduce air pollution from new power plants across the nation. The District of Columbia and the City of New York also joined in the legal action. The Clean Air Act requires that the EPA review and revise emission standards for new pollution sources every eight years to ensure that they protect public health and the environment. On February 27, 2006, EPA issued revised regulations in accordance with a court order. However, the revised standards completely fail to regulate power plant emissions of carbon dioxide, the major contributor to global warming. In addition, the revised standards for other air pollutants harmful to public health are unacceptably lax. New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer said: "In defense of public health, the environment and our economy, power plants must be required to sharply reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. EPA’s newly adopted rule represents an abdication of leadership and foresight in favor of the unacceptable status quo." Office of New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer
  •  State Health Department Urges New Yorkers to Take Precautions to Avoid Tick Bites, Prevent Lyme Disease ALBANY, NY, April 25, 2006 - State Health Commissioner Antonia C. Novello, M.D., M.P.H., Dr.P.H., today reminded all New Yorkers to take precautions from now through the fall season to protect themselves against potential tick-borne diseases that may cause chronic health conditions, such as Lyme disease. The State Health Department's "Be Tick Free" education campaign was developed in coordination with local health departments in counties where the report of ticks and Lyme disease cases are most prevalent. The Department's "Be Tick Free" logo is displayed across New York State on trail markers, billboards and bus placards, as well as on local television public service announcements. The Department is also providing updated educational and awareness brochures on Lyme disease prevention and stickers containing the logo to counties to assist them in their public outreach efforts in the communities they serve.--from New York State Department of Health
  •  $1M given to return salmon to Lake Ontario — Banrock Station Wines of Canada is donating $1.1 million ($1.25 million Canadian) to the Banrock Station Wetlands Foundation Canada for a five-year project to restore the native Atlantic salmon back to Lake Ontario, the company said today. - (April 28, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Rochester, 3 area towns get grants for trees  — Rochester and three area towns are among 42 statewide chosen to share in $448,000 in grants to study and plant urban trees, Gov. George Pataki announced yesterday. - (April 28, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Olmsted parks celebrated - Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks and Rochester Mayor Robert Duffy issued a proclamation Wednesday designating April 26 through May 3 as Rochester Olmsted Parks Week. - Seneca, Genesee Valley, Highland and Maplewood parks were designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, a renowned landscape architect.- (April 29, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  WXXI: Kodak Completes Environmental Goals (2006-04-27) ROCHESTER, NY (2006-04-27) Eastman Kodak Company says it's achieved the environmental goals it set for the year 2008 more than two years early, thanks partly to the move from traditional to digital photography. wxxi NewsRoom
  •  EPA > Wetlands > American Wetlands Month May is the month we recognize and celebrate the wonderful ways wetlands enrich the environment and people. It is a time to give back to the environment by learning more about wetlands and participating in the many scheduled events. The Environmental Protection Agency is proud to partner with other federal, state and local agencies and private organizations celebrating American Wetlands Month each May. Events are scheduled across the country to educate, involve and engage Americans who want to better understand the value of one of Earth's most important ecosystems. This year's theme is "It Pays to Save Wetlands."
  •  Speakers at housing conference spotlight social ties to health - They decry links among toxic environment, race, income - Background Environmental justice is the quest for a healthy environment for everyone, regardless of race or income level. Today, 80 percent of Hispanics, 65 percent of black Americans and 57 percent of whites live in counties with polluted air, and problems like lead poisoning are far more frequent in low-income communities. (April 29, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Advocates give our ozone level an 'F'  — Monroe County received a failing grade for its continued problems with ozone pollution in the annual State of the Air report released today by the American Lung Association. "The worst ozone problem in the state is in western New York," said Peter Iwanowicz, director of environmental health for the association's New York chapter. While industrial pollution, on the whole, has declined in recent years, ozone problems linger. The chemical components of ozone — volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides — are produced by fuel combustion, so as the number of vehicles on local highways has increased, more ozone is created, canceling out other gains. (April 27, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  •  Urban Forestry grants announced for 42 communities - Nearly $448,000 in urban and community forestry grants were announced Thursday to 42 communities across New York State. The awards support tree planting and forestry programs that will enhance community landscapes and provide environmental benefits to residents in urban and suburban areas. Under the Urban and Community Forestry Grants program, which is funded by New York State and the U.S. Forest Service and administered by the State Department of Environmental Conservation, grants are available to cities, villages, towns and not-for-profit organizations. The Community Greening Grants promote municipal urban forestry programs through tree planting, tree inventory and management planning, tree maintenance, and educational projects that explain the importance of planting and maintaining trees in communities. New York State News on the Net!
  •  Kodak unveils its data on global pollutants — Many governmental leaders have advocated against restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions, calling international treaties like the Kyoto Protocol a drain on the economy. But some American corporations are quietly taking action. Tuesday, Eastman Kodak Co. released its global greenhouse gas emissions to public scrutiny. Three years of Kodak data for all six of the greenhouse gases regulated by the Kyoto Protocol — carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride — were posted online by the California Climate Action Registry. - (April 5, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle

 

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

 What's New in RochesterEnvironment.com for April 2006:

  •  04/28/06 -- Check out this new environmental site online Jigeemu.com: Helping the Earth - Made Simple This site is the kind of online environmental effort that I heartily support: One of the great abilities of the Internet is to get everyone environmental information quickly and thoroughly.  Jigeemu.com was created by several recent graduates of The Johns Hopkins University. Our goal is to make it easier for individuals to be environmentally conscious. By providing the public with information on recycling, energy efficiency, and other environmental considerations, the members of Jigeemu.com hope that this website can be a useful aid for reducing pollution and helping maintain the health of the environment.
  •  04/28/06 -- Environmental Reading choice: If you want to get the skinny on Global Warming from a very respected environmental reporter who can explain the problem in very specific detail, with 'it's-happening-now! examples, I recommend this short and pity book: Field Notes from a Catastrophe by Elizabeth Kolbert.
  •  04/28/06 -- Major update on Global Warming: Global Warming Science NEW: Global Fingerprints of Greenhouse Warming -The Pew Center's March 2006 Summary of Recent Scientific Research (pdf) -- "Greenhouse gases are accumulating in Earth’s atmosphere as a result of human activities, causing surface air temperatures and subsurface ocean temperatures to rise." -Climate Chance Science, U.S. National Academy of Sciences, 2001 -"The scientific understanding of climate change is now sufficiently clear to justify nations taking prompt action." -Joint [11] Science Academies’ Statement: Global Response to Climate Change, 2005 --- The earth is warming. Temperatures at the Earth's surface increased by an estimated 1.4°F (0.8°C) between 1900 and 2005. The past decade was the hottest of the past 150 years and perhaps the past millennium. The hottest 22 years on record have occurred since 1980, and 2005 was the hottest on record. -- Global Warming: The Pew Center on Global Climate Change
  •  04/27/06 -- Why we should care about what's going on with our environment.  This story by the Boston Globe highlights a grave environmental problem that we, as Americans, seem incapable of addressing--that many of our irresponsible industries have been and are poisoning our environment. The problem is that we, as a society, do not actively conduct continual studies of our environment (including cancer studies)  
  •  04/25/06 -- With energy prices skyrocketing, it's time to get Energy Smart - The New York Energy $martSM program is designed to continue energy efficiency, low-income services, research and development, and environmental protection programs during the State's transition to electric retail competition, and is a key element in the restructuring of New York's electric utility industry. In 1998, to ensure that these kinds of programs continue to benefit New Yorkers, the State's Public Service Commission (PSC) named the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) administrator of these programs, which are paid for by a System Benefits Charge (SBC) on the electricity transmitted and distributed by the State's investor-owned utilities. The New York Energy $martSM program is being implemented in those utility territories. Some 2,700 projects in more than 30 programs are funded under New York Energy $martSM.
  •  04/25/06 -- Wind Power fights. While we fight locally about install wind farms, the world at large is beginning to see the how desperately we need to have safe (non-nuclear), renewable energy: As Gas Prices Climb, Wind Power Wins over New Fans  by Robert S. Boyd - WASHINGTON - Thanks to $3-a-gallon gasoline and $75-a-barrel oil, wind power - the once-wimpy little brother of the energy industry - is putting on muscle and gaining favor. Sleek white wind turbines, 25 stories tall, rise from the plains of West Texas in Big Spring. (Carolyn Mary Bauman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram) Its backers promote wind as a clean, cheap, endlessly renewable way to make electricity that can help reduce the nation's reliance on high-priced, perhaps undependable foreign sources and thereby enhance national security. --Published on Tuesday, April 25, 2006 by Knight Ridder - See today's newspaper: Naples joins suit against wind-power project — Village leaders in Naples, Ontario County, have voted to join a lawsuit challenging a wind energy project planned for the nearby towns of Prattsburg and Italy. Ecogen LLC, a Buffalo-based developer, plans a 53-turbine project in the Steuben and Yates county communities, and has received preliminary approval from the Steuben County Industrial Development Agency, which completed an environmental review of the project in December. - (April 24, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
  • 04/22/06 -- Except for a few local News Sources (like the Democrat and Chronicle ) our area's online news organizations should be ashamed of themselves for the lack of environmental news this community is offered.  Environmental information from the news media is critical if any one community is going to be on top of environmental problems.  The public needs to know what is going on with environmental potential problems and situations in order to be able to act before an outright disaster occurs.  This community needs a lot more environmental reporting and a lot more media doing it's job on the most critical issue of the day. 
  •  04/22/06 -- Want the skinny on Global WarmingRead a conversation with Elizabeth Kolbert: A conversation with climate journalist Elizabeth Kolbert | By David Roberts | Grist Magazine | Main Dish | 10 Apr 2006 Over the past year, a perfect storm of scientific studies, dire weather events, and media coverage lifted global warming onto the mainstream national agenda. No writing had more impact than a series of closely observed pieces in The New Yorker by journalist Elizabeth Kolbert, which have now been collected and expanded into a book: Field Notes From a Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change. (Read a review of the book.)--from Environmental News and Humor | Grist Magazine | 22 Apr 2006
  •  04/22/06 --Here's a way you can help our environment locally: Welcome to My Yard Counts! — My Yard Counts My Yard Counts! My Yard Counts! is a new citizen-science project that collects information about birds around residences in rural, suburban, and urban settings. Researchers are hoping to identify the features in yards that are most important to birds. Participants spend 20 minutes watching birds near their homes once a week from April to August. Data will be collected through the online eBird program. To learn more and to sign up for this free project, go to http://www.birds.cornell.edu/MyYardCounts  < http://www.birds.cornell.edu/MyYardCounts > .
  •  04/22/06 -- Here's some information about Energy loss that I did not know: Leaking Electricity: Standby and Off-Mode Power Consumption in Consumer Electronics and Household Appliances  By: Jennifer Thorne and Margaret Suozzo - February, 1998 - Home electronics and small household appliances (such as televisions (TVs), video cassette recorders (VCRs), telephone answering machines, cordless phones, portable power tools, office equipment, etc.) draw energy not only when they are in use, but also when the power is ostensibly off. This phenomenon is known as "leaking electricity." Leaking electricity is responsible for an estimated 45 billion kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity consumed by U.S. households each year—nearly 5 percent of total residential electricity use—and costs U.S. consumers more than $3.5 billion annually. In the past few years, researchers in the United States, Europe, Japan, and elsewhere have made considerable progress in understanding the energy losses, potential savings, and markets for products that leak electricity. This information is enabling policymakers to make better decisions about effective approaches that they can take to address leaking electricity. At this point, at least one significant joint government-industry initiative has begun in the United States and others are being discussed. Not surprisingly, these initiatives focus on those markets where the greatest potential energy savings lie. Additional opportunities exist to save a large fraction of the remaining standby and off-mode power waste. Preliminary estimates show that leaking electricity could be reduced by almost 75 percent through the use of improved components and product designs. --from ACEEE - American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy
  •  04/22/06 -- This sounds like a good Federal Environmental program: EPA | Community Action for a Renewed Environment The new Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) program sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is a competitive grant program that offers an innovative way for communities to take action to reduce toxic pollution. Through CARE, communities create local collaborative partnerships that implement local solutions to reduce releases of toxic pollutants and minimize exposure to toxic pollutants.
  •  04/22/06 -- Here are some interesting tips on saving energy that you may not have considered: Are Energy Vampires in Your Home?--from GreenTips Home (Index) When you walk through your home at night with the lights off, chances are your path will still be lit by the eerie glow of “standby” lights and digital displays on various appliances and electronic devices. Because these devices are ready to operate or receive signals at all times, they act like vampires silently sucking away energy even when they are turned “off.” --from Union of Concerned Scientists
  •  04/22/06 -- It's Earth Day today.  Besides using RochesterEnvironment.com to help you live sustainability, try this new site especially designed to help you live more environmentally friendly: Jigeemu.com: Helping the Earth - Made Simple Jigeemu.com was created by several recent graduates of The Johns Hopkins University. Our goal is to make it easier for individuals to be environmentally conscious. By providing the public with information on recycling, energy efficiency, and other environmental considerations, the members of Jigeemu.com hope that this website can be a useful aid for reducing pollution and helping maintain the health of the environment.
  •  04/16/06 -- Call me Skeptical, but when I hear that the government wants to limit how much information that businesses have to contribute to the EPA) Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), and the fact that only businesses are the one contributing to the TRI, then I have a problem believing that this story about a drop in actual chemical releases into our state's water and air are reliable.  I guess I won't feel entirely comfortable with chemical release figure until we have independent institutions monitor the toxic releases into our environment.  At present, most of the official figures for toxic releases come from the businesses themselves--self monitoring.   Environmental Protection Agency - EPA Press Release: Chemical Releases to Air and Water Drop Drastically in New York State from 1998 to 2004 (New York, NY) The quantity of toxic chemicals released into the air and water by industry in New York State fell by more than 35%, from 50 million pounds in 1998 to a total of 31 million pounds in 2004, according to data in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) issued today. The amount of total releases, including land disposal, dropped by 8.9% in the state from 2003 to 2004. TRI provides Americans with vital information about chemicals released into their communities, and is an important instrument for industries to gauge their progress in reducing pollution. On a national level, over 23,000 facilities reported on approximately 650 chemicals for calendar year 2004. --from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • 04/16/06 -- Time to think about summer camps: Applications Available for DEC Summer Environmental Camps New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Denise M. Sheehan announced that applications for DEC's 2006 summer environmental education camps are now available and encouraged families to consider enrolling their children in these exciting programs. "We strive to bring children closer to the outdoors through our four environmental education summer camps located in some of the most pristine, natural areas in the state—the Catskill Forest Preserve, the Adirondack Forest Preserve, and the Genesee River Valley," Commissioner Sheehan said. "Camps Colby, DeBruce, Rushford and Pack Forest offer children the opportunity to participate in activities that help them become more aware of the environment around them and stimulate their desire to conserve our natural resources. The activities and lessons blend learning and outdoor fun—like fishing, canoeing and hiking—in a group setting that allows children to get hands-on experience lasting for a lifetime."  --from New York State Department of Environmental Conservation - Protecting NY's Environment and Managing its Natural Resources
  •  04/16/06 -- Looking for some good trails?  Get a complete trail guide here: Trail results for Rochester New York
  •  04/15/06 -- It takes time to change people's attitudes and habits, but here at RochesterEnvironment.com we hope everyone gets on board with the new 48 Hour Neighborhood Notification Law in Monroe County.  It took many groups a long time to get this law passed in Monroe County--and did so for a very good reason: the public health of everyone in this county.  Lawn care law largely ignored — Many Monroe County homeowners are not complying with the county's new pesticide neighbor notification law, officials say. Under the law, homeowners who apply weed-killers and insecticides to lawn and garden areas larger than 100 square feet must post small signs informing neighbors that chemicals have been applied. In addition, the law requires retailers to post signs next to pesticides explaining the law to their customers. (April 15, 2006) Daily Messenger
  •  4/09/06 -- Find an Endangered Species in your area: Northeast - Endangered Species Map - Wildlife - Sierra Club
  • 4/08/06 -- It's Spring, where you gonna go? Why not one of your Monroe County Parks?  And to help you find out where to go, check out the Democrat and Chronicle's Park and Trails interactive map.
  • 4/08/06 -- Get up to snuff on Global Warming: Check out this great series of reports on Global Warming online - you can even podcast these programs - Early Signs: Reports From a Warming Planet / Nick Miroff and Jon Mooalem Real Player MP3 -Living on Earth kicks off a six-part series of reports from places where climate change concerns are already bringing change. First stop: Churchill, Manitoba where Nick Miroff and Jon Mooalem report diminished polar ice is forcing a town to reexamine whether it has any future as "The Polar Bear Capital of the World." (15:00) --from Living on Earth: Sound Journalism for the Whole Planet
  • 4/08/06 -- Living better environmentally: Seeking Common Ground Home Page Founding in 1997, Seeking Common Ground (SCG), Inc. is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit educational organization dedicated to exploring, modeling and inspiring more conscious and restorative ways of life. SCG was co-founded by five women in response to a growing desire to apply their corporate education and publishing skills to topics closer to heart and home. Seeking Common Ground, Inc. P.O. Box 486, Mendon, NY 14506 Phone: 585-394-7610 mail your questions and/or comments to: info@seekingcommonground.org  
  • 4/08/06 -- Locate bad air online: Clear The Air What you don't know about the air you breathe can hurt you. For the first time, the Power Plant Air Pollution Locater puts at your fingertips detailed information about the air you and your family are breathing. Now you can zoom in on your state, your city, and even on the power plant in your back yard — and find out what dirty air means to you.

Find all Environmental Calendar items here

 

EVENTS:  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 May 2006 and beyond:  

When

What

Where

  Avian flu study The University of Rochester's Vaccine and Treatment Evaluation Unit needs people of all ages, but particularly those older than 65, for its latest study. Participants would visit the medical center eight times to get two shots and have their blood drawn. The shot does not give people bird flu. UR will pay participants a total of $320. To sign up, call (585) 273-3990.  - from UR finds bird-flu vaccine may work but it's no fast solution— The University of Rochester has helped the federal government find a vaccine that may protect some people against avian flu. But the doses needed are so high it would be impossible to make enough for the entire U.S. population, according to a UR study to be published today in The New England Journal of Medicine.  - (March 30, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle  
Friday, May 5th at 7 pm Smart Growth Starts with Effective Land-use Planning - What: A lecture by Thomas Hylton, Pulitzer-prize winning journalist, author of the book, Save Our Land, Save Our Towns, and President of the PA-based non-profit, Save Our Land, Save Our Towns. Hylton's organization is a charitable corporation that promotes changes in attitudes and policies that cause suburban sprawl. Through education and advocacy, the non-profit champions the use of regional planning, growth boundaries and traditional town design to protect rural areas and encourage the redevelopment of cities and towns that house people of all ages, races and incomes. When: Friday, May 5th at 7 pm. Where: Union Congregational Church, 14 N. Main Street, Churchville, NY 14428 - Free and Open to the Public, followed by a reception. -Hosted by the Village of Churchville, NY and the Rochester Regional Community Design Center. For more information, please visit: www.rrcdc.org/churchville/flier.pdf  or call (585) 271-0520 Union Congregational Church, 14 N. Main Street, Churchville, NY 14428
A six-week spring clean up initiative that begins April 17 The City of Rochester takes pride in its environment: We here at RochesterEnvironment.com do our utmost to find ways Rochesterians can help their local environment.   Well, our new mayor, Mayor Robert Duffy, has kicked off his administration with a fantastic effort to get the public's attention on our environment with the Rochester Clean Sweep Program.  I applaud the new mayor's real efforts to get the the public take pride in their environment and do something specific that will make a difference.  Check out this site for all information on how you can commit to a cleaner Rochester:  Rochester's Clean Sweep Program - Be A Part of the Action! Help Clean Up Our Streets! Clean and attractive neighborhoods are vital to the health of our city! - “Rochester's Clean Sweep... Showing Pride in Our City” - A six-week spring clean up initiative that begins April 17 --from Welcome to the City of Rochester Special program to help clean up your area of the city.
7pm, Tuesday, May 30. Sierra Club Book Study Group: Plan B - The Rochester Group of the Sierra Club is hosting a study group enable community members to learn more about imminent environmental problems and solutions. In conjunction with the Eighth Annual Environmental Forum, we have chosen to begin our study with Lester Brown's Plan B 2.0: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble. Brown's book is notable for its clear and readable analysis of dangerous stresses on the environment. Unlike many "gloom and doom" prophecies, Brown also offers practical solutions that citizens and leaders can implement right away. We will meet on May 30 at 7 pm, in the Brighton Public Library. We will discuss chapters 1-7 at this meeting, and the rest of the book at our June meeting. Copies are available from your favorite bookseller, or via download from http://www.earth-policy.org/Books/PB2/Contents.htm . Members and non-members alike are invited. - Event: Book study group Sponsor: Rochester Group of the Sierra Club Reading: Lester Brown's Plan B 2.0: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble. Sponsor URL: http://newyork.sierraclub.org/rochester/  Download book URL: http://www.earth-policy.org/Books/PB2/Contents.htm . Location: Brighton Public Library Time & Date: 7 pm, Tuesday, May 30. Brighton Library, 2300 Elmwood Avenue (In large public room off of magazine room)
Fri., June 9 and Sat., June 10 Learn how to protect our commonly-owned water supplies in the Finger Lakes - WATER RIGHTS PROTECTION WORKSHOP - Fri., June 9 and Sat., June 10 at the Rural-Urban Center 208 Broadway, Montour Falls, NY - Sponsored by the Finger Lakes Progressive Coalition and the Finger Lakes Group of the Sierra Club - AGENDA - Friday June 9, 2006 - 7:00 - 9:00 pm - Introduction to water privatization issues by workshop presenters Ruth Caplan from the Alliance for Democracy and the Sierra Club and Vicki Kaplan from Food and Water Watch.* View the documentary film Thirst. Discuss issues raised by the film. Overview of Saturday's agenda. - Saturday, June 10, 2006 - 10:00 am - 3:00 pm - 9:30 am Check-in 10:00 Welcome and introductions 10:15 Summary of discussion on Friday evening 10:30 Presentation on Municipal Privatization Issues Vicki Kaplan, Food and Water Watch. Learn how new global "trade" talks threaten municipal water services in the U.S. 11:15 Presentation on Bottled Water Issues Ruth Caplan, Alliance for Democracy and Sierra Club. Learn how private water bottling companies are taking local water supplies 12:00 Lunch 1:00 Discussion of situation in the Finger Lakes area 1:30 Presentation on local water ordinances Ruth Caplan. Learn about what is happening in Barnstable, NH 2:00 Discussion about doing local ordinances in Finger Lakes area 3:00 Adjourn - $10 suggested donation for workshop on Sat., $5 charge for lunch on Sat. - Contact Rachel to reserve a space: 607-569-2114 or rachel@ecobooks.com  * Vicki Kaplan is confirmed for Saturday, June 10 and invited by not confirmed for Friday, June 9. Ruth Caplan is confirmed for both days. Learn more about Food and Water Watch at http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/water/communities-and-privatization -1 Learn more about the Alliance for Democracy Defending Water for Life Campaign at http://www.thealliancefordemocracy.org/html/eng/2037-AA.shtml  Learn more about the Sierra Club Water Privatization Task Force at http://www.sierraclub.org/cac/water/   Rural-Urban Center 208 Broadway, Montour Falls, NY
Second Monday of every month at 7 PM From Green Party of Monroe County, New York --  Check out their blog: Green Pages Newspaper    This Monday is the Green Party of Monroe County's Monthly Meeting. Our speaker this month is Elizabeth Henderson of Peaceworks Farms and Genesee Valley Organic Community Supported Agriculture (GVOCSA). Elizabeth will be talking about organic agriculture at the family level. Mothers & Fathers can learn how to help their children as well as themselves go organic. Also in attendance at this month's shindig will be Rachel Treichler, who has just been elected as the Western NY representative to the NYS Green Party Executive Committee. Come and give her feedback on the Greens at a state level. As if that weren't enough, we'll be voting on a platform plank, planning for upcoming events, elections and more. As always the meeting starts at 7pm at 179 Atlantic Avenue. It's handicap accessible and the meeting is free and open to the public so bring your friends! 179 Atlantic Avenue.

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 May 2006:

  •  **ACTION** Don't let them disappear on the ballot box.  Green Party Ballot Status: New York State Election Law says that in order for political parties to maintain ballot status, it must have at least 50,000 votes in each gubernatorial election. For the major, corporate-driven parties, this is easy. For independent, third-parties this is more difficult. In 1998, the Green Party ran Al "Grandpa" Lewis for governor and he got 52,533 votes. For the next four years, the Greens had a ballot line in New York State, allowing citizens to register as Greens and making it immensely easier to run candidates for local office. In 2002, the Greens ran Stanley Aronowitz for Governor and received 41,797 votes, losing ballot status. The Green Party sued to allow people to remain registered Greens and won. In 2003, the Monroe County Board of Elections sent a letter to all registered greens erroneously telling us that we are now considered "blanks". Many Greens then registered in a different party, not knowing they did not need to. The Monroe BOE did not send a second letter correcting this error. People can still register in the Green Party, but must check "Other" on voter registration cards and write in "Green". This year marks another gubernatorial election. The Greens will hold its convention on May 20th, in which its slate for state offices will be chosen. Because the state does not recognize us as an “official” party (because we do not have ballot status), we cannot have a primary, so members of the State Committee will elect those who have collected petition signatures to run for Governor, Lt. Governor, Attorney General, Comptroller and US Senate. Once the candidates are chosen, we will have to garner thousands of petition signatures from mid July to mid August across the state to get our people on the ballot in November. Any registered NYS voters are allowed to gather signatures. Contact the local Green Party at (585) 234-6470 if you are interested in helping the Greens get ballot status back. Once we regain our ballot status, people will be able to register Green easier. We will be able to run more candidates more effectively thus challenging the corporate-party system. Dave Atias Visit http://www.gpomc.org  and http://gpomc.blogspot.com
  •   **ACTION**  RGGI States Announce Release of Draft Model Rule for Regional Carbon Cap Seven Northeast states participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) have released the draft model rule that provides detailed information on RGGI implementation. Public comments on the draft model rule will be accepted until May 22, 2006. The program will place a mandatory emissions cap on the electric generating sector, and allow emissions trading. RGGI will also achieve significant reductions through end-use energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emission reduction projects undertaken outside of the power sector. To Submit Comments The comment period will close on May 22, 2006. Written comments on the draft model rule should be submitted to the attention of Franz Litz, Climate Change Policy Coordinator, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, at the RGGI email address: RGGICOMM@gw.dec.state.ny.us . For additional information on RGGI, see "Frequently Asked Questions" in the text of the complete press release, and visit the RGGI website (see "Related Links" below).

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.

  • Adopt-A-Stream Delta Laboratories, Inc. , 1820 East Ave, Rochester , NY 14610 (716) 242-2400, Adopt-A-Stream is an interdisciplinary program where teachers and students adopt a waterway and do chemical, physical, biological and microbiological testing to determine water quality. Teachers can select any projects and activities from the Teacher's Guide that best meet their students' capabilities, and materials available to the teacher. Some teachers find that enlisting a community cosponsor to aid them in their efforts is quite valuable.

 

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