RENewsletter | March 27, 2011


The Free environmental newsletter from

“Our Environment is changing: Keep up with the Change.”

[3/20/11 – 3/27/11]


* Need to vent? | Go to my blog: Environmental Thoughts - Rochester, NY


* Found an important Rochester environmental story from a credible source that you think needs attention? Or, an Environmental Event, Please, SEND ME THE LINK. If you think this newsletter, which continually informs our community on our local environmental news, events, actions, is worthwhile, please encourage others to sign up.  


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


* The March 2011 Environmental Site of the Month Award goes to Rochester Gardening “Gardening in Upstate New York”:  Go to Award.


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


Opening Salvo | NewsLinks | Daily Updates | Events | Environmental Site of the Month | Take Action |



[Hyperlinks work by CTRL + click to follow a link]




Opening Salvo:  “Another Earth Day approaching for Rochester, NY and we still don’t get it”


The whole point, I would argue, of Earth day is to remind folks that we are creatures still dependant on a healthy environment—no matter how important we think other things are.  In this regard, there are many Earth Day events coming up in Rochester, NY, and I hope you’ll get out and attend one of them.  Find out who’s doing what and why.  Check Calendar to get a complete listing of all Earth Day events in our area.


This year, like many past years, much is being done to attract a wide diversity of folks because we all have a direct link to our environment.  But it’s not easy.  Many, far too many, wouldn’t dream of attending an Earth Day event.  It’s not on their radar.  It’s not their ‘thing’ as we used to say in the sixties.  Or they’re too busy, they don’t think they care, they don’t believe our environment is in trouble, or they think they do know all about it and think it’s all out of their hands.  It’s not.


Believe it or not, it’s not somehow written into the great scheme of things that we have to drive ourselves and every other living thing on this planet into extinction.  We can and must do something to stop the steady march into the collapse that pollution and our other environmental issues portend.


But the proportionally small numbers of folks who attend to our environment through their advocacy, jobs, official roles, or interests are not enough.  Because our planet is warming (our atmosphere is over 390ppm CO2 when it should be lower than 350ppm CO2) and we are losing species at a rate consistent with the five other major extinction events (except this time we are the cause), the work of a few will not make the wholesale changes needed to put us on a sustainable path.  


This past year’s BP Oil Spill, the Massey mine accident, and the present Japanese nuclear disaster must remind even the most indifferent soul that the things that man does to our environment don’t always go as planned.  And when things do go wrong, many, many lives get disrupted or worse.  Through our neglect, our hubris, and our rush for unfettered riches, we have put our existence and our environment on such a precarious path that the slightest error in technology or judgment wreaks unimaginable havoc.   It doesn’t have to be this way.


Unlike what transpires in the entertainment world, there will be no superheroes to solve our serious environmental problems.  In those make-believe worlds, disasters seem to boil down to simple heroic efforts to save humanity from evil, from aliens, from whatever.  Well, our environmental problems are an entirely different sort of disaster than those conjured up by Hollywood.  In most cases, environmental catastrophes are years, decades, maybe even centuries in the making.  They take so long to occur, accumulating bit by bit, that we don’t see the collapse happening until it’s way too late to fix it.  There’s no way you can ratchet down our atmosphere’s temperature when we pass a tipping point.  We have to prevent disasters, instead of thinking we can do whatever we want and can then fix them in the nick of time. 


The conundrum for the environmental community is how to make every day Earth Day.  For what we don’t get is that little if nothing will remain of our lives, our hopes, and our dreams when our environment collapses.  You cannot marginalize, sideline, or forget about the very ground under your feet.  We, everyone, have a moral obligation to the generations that follow us to leave them a healthy environment--and we are not anywhere near accomplishing that.  (Click on my email for feedback)




NewsLinksEnvironmental NewsLinks – [Highlights of major environmental stories concerning our area from the past week]


·         Over $6 million for fresh fruits and vegetables in New York schools

·         State of Disrepair: The Cost of Clean Water

·         The Latest from FLCC: How Conesus Lake gets its walleye

·         Record Numbers of New Yorkers Retrofit Homes for Energy Efficiency Using Green Jobs/Green NY Free or Reduced-Cost Energy Audit/Low-Cost Financing Program

·         Meeting revisits Marcellus Shale as new rules are drafted - Wellsville, NY - Wellsville Daily Reporter

·         Congressman Reed asks government to abandon high speed rail - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow

·         Congress hears region's transit concerns | Democrat and Chronicle |

·         Researchers help map Japan's tsunami and earthquake damage

·         High Speed Rail Service Talks - WETM 18 Online

·         'Great Lakes could be bone dry in 80 years'  


·         An Update on Indian Point | Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

·         ENVIRONMENT: A quicker way to test the waters - News Articles - Rochester City Newspaper

·         Times on fracking study: Don't rush it - News Blog - Rochester City Newspaper

·         We appreciate water, but waste it

·         Governor Cuomo Announces Nuclear Regulatory Commission has Agreed to Make Indian Point the Top Priority in Nuclear Plant Seismic Risk Review | Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

·         New York Waterfowl Hunters Get High Marks - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation

·         03/22/2011: CORRECTION: UPDATED – please note the addition of “hundreds of thousands” in the second and sixth paragraphs | Radiation Monitors Continue to Confirm That No Radiation Levels of Concern Have Reached the United States

·         New York reconsiders nuclear | Innovation Trail

·         Ginna Officials Monitoring Nuclear Situation in Japan

·         Scientists: VHS not causing widespread fish die-offs in Great Lakes | Superior Telegram | Superior, Wisconsin

·         03/21/2011: EPA Warns Online Shoppers about Illegal, Harmful Pesticide Sales Japan Crisis Sparks Nuclear Waste Questions In U.S. : NPR

·         No lake windmills on their minds - Erie County - The Buffalo News

·         Dead Fish Cover Pond in Greece - YNN, Your News Now

·         U of R Uses Recycled Plastic to Make Caps and Gowns - YNN, Your News Now

·         Governor Cuomo Concerned About NY Nuclear Plant Safety -

·         Grassroots grows with Waterweek

·         Secretary Salazar Announces Funding for Wetlands Acquisitions and Grants for Bird Habitat Conservation



UpdatesDaily Updates – [Connecting the dots on Rochester’s environment. Find out what’s going on environmentally in our area—and why you should care? Clicking on -DISCUSSION – will take you to my blog “Environmental Thoughts, NY, where you can add your comments.]





EventsRochester Environmental Events Calendar – [The most complete listing of all environmental events around the Rochester, New York area.]  If you don’t see your event, or know of a local environmental event, please send me the info: with (EV event) in the subject line.



April 2011



May 2011



September 2011





ActionTake Action - Often, I receive request to pass on alerts, petitions, Public Comments on local developments, and environmental items needing action by the Rochester Community and around the world. I’ll keep Actions posted until their due date. 





AwardEnvironmental Site of the Month Award – [On the last Sunday of each month, we present an environmental award for the Rochester-area environmental web site or blog that best promotes the need to protect and offers solutions for our area's environmental issues.]


The March 2011 Environmental Site of the Month Award goes to Rochester Gardening “This web site is meant to encourage the transfer of information relating to the varied interests of gardeners living near Rochester NY. This is accomplished by presenting some material which is local in content, and links to resources found elsewhere on the Internet. The material on this site includes some permanent resources, such as the large lists of links to many Internet sites, and a regularly-updated calendar with local events of interest to gardeners. There will be material which appears only for a short period of time, of a seasonal nature or a 'spotlight' feature. Since this site (like nature) will have some material in 'bloom' for long periods, and other features flowering for only a limited time, you should visit regularly to see what's new. We will try to point you to fresh growth with a list of what's new.”


Rochester Gardening wins this month’s environmental award because it’s one of those handy websites on gardening information that has been around for a long time. Year in and year out this site shugs along providing free information on how to create and keep your garden healthy and our environment healthy too.  Check this site out often for all the local information and links you need to keep your garden going strong.