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These Daily Updates for this month represent just one month in over a decade of connecting the dots on our area's environmental situation.
Find out what’s going on environmentally in our area—and why you should care? GOT AN ENVIRONMENTAL STORY ABOUT THE ROCHESTER, NY AREA FROM A CREDIBLE SOURCE? SEND IT TO ME! Looking for something specific. Use Control + F and search for it on this page.
These daily updates pertain to what is going on in our environment in Rochester & around the world. Although I do not see RochesterEnvironment.com, or Global Environmental Resources, as environmental activist sites, I do view them as active. They are active conduits for all the environmental news, services, links, and an on-going discovery for the potential role that I believe the Internet will play in environmentalism. Your local news media is not doing its job in informing the public on the breath and depth of our environmental problems, so you are going to have to get on the Internet.
9/30/2010 - Help our Parks and trails. Here’s a good way for your non-profit organization to get some funds to help out our parks. Grants available to strengthen park and trail groups "Grants aim to boost organizational capacity Parks & Trails New York is offering a new round of Capacity Building Grants for park and trail groups in New York State. The grants, of up to $3,000, will strengthen not-for-profit organizations that are working to build and protect parks and trails in communities across the state --- helping to not only provide places for close-to-home, healthy physical activity but also generate additional tourist dollars to strengthen local economies. " Parks & Trails New York
9/29/2010 - Schuyler County Community Forum on Fracking Wed., October 6, 2010 Watkins Glen Elementary School Auditorium 612 South Decatur Street, Watkins Glen, NY 6:30 p.m Many questions have been raised in New York about the safety of the process of high-volume, high-pressure horizontal fracturing, or “fracking.” Other questions have been raised about the effect this form of gas drilling will have on property values. Here’s your chance to learn more about the various issues involved from well-informed experts, local citizens, and Pennsylvania residents who are currently living in active and or soon-to-be active Marcellus Shale gas drilling areas. Committed panelists include Dr. John Stolz, a microbiologist from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA; David Whiting of Red Newt Winery and Bistro (Schuyler County), Peggy Haines, a realtor with Audrey Edelman Realty; Helen Slottje, Esq., and environmental attorney; and Craig and Julie Sautner of Montrose, Pennsylvania. The Sautners live on the now infamous Carter Road in Dimock, Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, an active drilling region . [more on Events in our area]
9/28/2010 - Recycling in Rochester: There is an updated "Donate, Reuse, and Recycle" list from Jeanette today. Check out this wonderfully easy list when you want to get rid of something, but don’t know there in Rochester, NY to do it. Donate Recycle Reuse (DRR) Check out this special resource for recycling opportunities for the Rochester area. This "Donate Recycle Reuse" list by one of your neighbors makes it easy to recycle in our area. It's a work in progress so, send Jeanette your additions or corrects make sure that next discarded item doesn't go in the landfill. For questions and ideas about this page contact Jeanette email@example.com
9/28/2010 - Important environmental training program – from the Center for Environmental Information Executive Forum: Strategic Redevelopment of Urban Centers Wednesday, October 21, 2010 - 8:00 am - 4:00 pm Rochester, NY This Executive Forum is designed for senior executives from both government and the private sector that are involved with: economic development, planning, building, construction, brownfield redevelopment, sustainability and environmental remediation. Attend this comprehensive interactive workshop and learn how to make sound green policy and project decisions using brownfields as part of your economic development strategy. You will understand how building Green on Brown can enhance the community’s sustainable footprint and enhance the ultimate economic viability of the project. Learn more>
9/27/2010 - Catch-up on Gas Drilling news: here’s another site for catching up on many news stories associated with gas drilling the Marcellus Gas Shale: Special Report: Marcellus Shale - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review "Natural gas extraction from the Marcellus shale has set off a land rush unlike anything Pennsylvania has seen since 1859 when Col. Edwin Drake drilled the world's first oil well in Titusville, Crawford County. The rock formation runs a mile underground from New York to Tennessee, and geologists believe it could produce 500 trillion cubic feet of natural gas – or 10 times more than Appalachia has produced over the past 150 years. With U.S. consumers using 23 trillion cubic feet of gas a year, it could supply the entire country for more than two decades. Getting to that gas already has transformed large swaths of rural Pennsylvania, and it has potential to change residents' lives for a generation or more. The discovery has affected global energy supplies, created instant wealth, raised environmental concerns and offered a lifeline to state politicians looking for new revenue. " Pittsburgh News, Sports, and Events - Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
9/27/2010 - Deconstruction Instead of Demolition: If 3, 000 vacant city dwellings are to be torn down wouldn’t it be a better idea to deconstruct them instead of demolishing them. The difference? By deconstruction (dismantling) we could salvage many of the parts for other uses instead of land filling them, like old pipes and wood. How many more jobs could be gotten by training some unemployed people to deconstruct all these building? Demolition wastes materials and fills landfills. City Develops Plan For Vacant Houses - Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events - 13WHAM.com "Collecting from owners is a challenge according to Garwood, but the city has roughly four million dollars annually budgeted for demolition--in addition to other government funding. " (September 27, 2010) Home - Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events - 13WHAM.com
9/27/2010 - Environmental Concerns are not Parochial: Of course, Climate Change is global and affects all humanity everywhere, but many (if not most) other environmental concerns have a world-wide affect also because our environment is a massively complex system with few containment walls. Boundaries, like shores, mountains, plains, deserts, abound, but they don’t contain pollution and other environmental effects. For example, an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico seems so far away as to be non-existent as far as our environmental situation goes. But, many of our area’s birds are migratory birds. If they pass through the Gulf and partake of one of the world’s largest wetlands for a stopover, they could be in trouble. Meaning our area’s birds could be in trouble. This situation is only a graphic example of how all our environmental concerns are connected. That we are not aware for the myriad of environmental concerns which began in other areas on the globe and how they affect our environment is due to a lack of interest by our media and the public in connecting-the-dots. But, if we don’t connect the dots on how environmental occurrences that happen in other area affect us the laws of physics will ensure that the dots get connected. How many more environmental stories about incidents in other areas are going to impact us here in Rochester, NY? Oil Spill Threatens Migratory Birds - National Wildlife Federation "As millions of birds head for the biggest spill in U.S. history, federal and nonprofit groups work with farmers to create safe alternative habitats 09-07-2010 // Laura Tangley The BP oil spill has contaminated huge swaths of some of the continent’s most critical bird habitat. Yet scientists say that, given the scale of the disaster, the toll of dead and injured birds to date—7,996 collected, 5,927 of them dead as of September 14—is lower than they initially expected. Compared to previous spills like the Exxon Valdez, which was much smaller, “our numbers have not been very dramatic,” says U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) biologist Gary Edwards, deputy regional director of the service’s Alaska region recently deployed in Louisiana. " (September 7, 2010) National Wildlife® Magazine - National Wildlife Federation
9/25/2010 - Help with combating the Emerald Ash Borer: Stop the Emerald Ash Borer Beetle "America’s neighborhoods and forests are under attack. The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) beetle has destroyed millions of ash trees. It lives in firewood. Move firewood and you spread the destruction. Help us protect the trees — and stop the beetle. Promise you won’t move firewood. "
9/25/2010 - Our friends over at the Rochester Regional Group of the Sierra Club are now on Facebook: Surf on over to our web site and check it out on the lower left-hand side of the front page: Rochester Reginal Group Sierra Club | Sierra Club Or, if you have a Facebook account, go directly to it and be a friend: Sierra Club Rochester Regional Group
9/25/2010 - Notes from a friend on Climate Change: "350 Day at the Farmers Market! 350 Day at the Farmers Market! | 350.org As you know, 10-10-10 is the day of the Global Work Party, where citizens will work together in over 4174 events in over 171 countries (that's all but 21 countries in the world!) to show our leaders that we the people are mobilized to take action to reduce the carbon dioxide in our atmosphere to 350 parts per million or less. Here in the U.S., the message is "We're getting to work, Congress, how about you?" We need our country to lead. More details here: www.350.org. Here in Rochester, we citizens and some communities are already leading. On this day, citizens from across the Rochester region will honor the Town of Brighton, its Farmers Market, and its citizens group Color Brighton Green for their pioneering efforts. Come to the Brighton Farmers Market that day between 10 and 12:30 and take action: Buy local sustainably produced food, thus lowering food miles traveled. Hear the results of Curb Your Car Week, where folks pledge to reduce their car travel by at least one trip for the week of Oct. 2-Oct. 9. You can sign up by Oct. 1st at Curb Your Car Week - Color Brighton Green . Bring your recycleables: plastics #3-7, corks, CDs, CFLs, alkaline batteries, crayons Help build a cool sculpture with these recycleables to show just how much we use then throw away Buy a pumpkin from a local farmer, then join us in the carving tent! Carve a "350" or other symbol of sustainability, then spread the message to friends n' neighbors. (We'll have stencils to make the pics on your pumpkin. And kid-friendly pumpkin carving tools!) Come and show Rochester and the world that we citizens demand that our leaders take action. We're working, why aren't they? The plans are still in the works. Check back often for updates between now and 10-10-10: 350 Day at the Farmers Market! | 350.org . "
9/24/2010 - Election and our Environment: As our election season heats up this fall, it is important to remember (now that the Supreme Court has rules that corporations are just ordinary folks (but with a lot of money, I mean a lot)) it is critical that we know who (or what) is really funding the environmental messages that will spill into our elections. Check out the Sierra Club’s efforts. Sierra Club Launches "Paid for By Big Oil" Twitter Site to Track Polluters' Influence on Politicians Paid For By Big Oil "See what is spilling from the mouths of Big Oil and their favorite candidates "
9/24/2010 - LOCAL PHARMACEUTICAL COLLECTION EVENT September 25, 2010 Geneva Wegmans, 300 Hamilton Street , Geneva N.Y from 10:00 am until 2:00 pm. PLEASE BRING YOUR UNWANTED, OUT-OF-DATE DRUGS TO THIS EVENT!! You probably have several old over-the-counter medications, prescriptions you no longer use or are expired or old/expired veterinary medicines. These drugs could be dangerous if used past their expiration date or if they get in the hands of children or adolescents. Do NOT flush or pour ANY unwanted, unused or expired medications down the drain. Flushed medications can get into our lakes, rivers and streams. Research has shown that continuous exposure to low levels of medications has altered the behavior and physiology of fish and aquatic organisms. Pharmaceuticals enter our wastewater from a variety of sources including the flushing of unused medications. Long-term exposure to low levels of antibiotics might result in the evolution of, or selection for, drug-resistant microbes and bacteria. **This event is co-sponsored by Seneca Lake Pure Waters Association (SLPWA), Finger Lakes Zero Waste Coalition (FLZWC), Finger Lakes Institute and Seneca Lake Area Partners in Five Counties (SLAP-5). Seneca Lake Pure Waters Association
9/24/2010 - Disclosing Fracking Fluids: If fracking or hydrolic frackuring is such a safe energy source why is it so hard for the companies who drill for natural gas this way to disclose what chemicals they are using? As this chemical soup might get into our drinking water, you would think that the public would have a right to know. But, it’s very thorny issue—mostly about protecting the rights and properties of companies, instead of the public whose land and water is at stake. Wyoming Fracking Rules Would Disclose Drilling Chemicals - ProPublica "New York and Pennsylvania have published lists of chemicals used, but these lists simply name chemicals that may be in any given well and do not detail the mixtures or concentrations. New York has proposed but not yet adopted rules similar to Wyoming’s. " ProPublica
9/21/2010 - Find out about GLOW: A great way to find out about the New York State Power Authority’s (NYPA) Great Lakes Off-shore Wind (GLOW) project is to attend the Center of Environmental Information’s annual “Community Salute to the Environment”. This event is a fund raiser for our area’s premier environmental education organization and in my view very important because it is an opportunity to find out what is going on with off-shore wind power generation in our area. This type of renewable energy could have a significant role in our area’s ability to offset greenhouse gas emissions, but there is little explanation in the press of how this is going to happen and many other details that the public needs to know. There has been some press about the various townships (including a story today “Irondequoit holds off on turbine opposition | Democrat and Chronicle) but not a whole lot of background on who is opposing this project, how it will be implemented, and more. For example, here’s a question of mine: “For those opposing this major renewable energy source for our area, what is their solution to our energy/climate change issue? In other words, if we don’t have wind power, aren’t we condemned to drill for gas and coal to get the energy we need?” One way to find out all this is to attend this program and ask Mr. Richard Kessel, President, New York Power Authority yourself. Community Salute to the Environment: 2010 Each year CEI celebrates community leaders and initiatives that have made a positive impact on our natural environment and honors the numerous environmental accomplishments in the Greater Rochester area. The 2010 event will be held at historic George Eastman House. Attendees are encouraged to tour the House, open during the reception. This year’s event will take place on October 25, 2010. CEI: Center for Environmental Information
9/21/2010 - Why fracking for gas is a major issue for Rochester Last night’s meeting on the Marcellus Gas Shale at the Brighton Town Hall started right out with the question Rochestarians want to know about this new drilling method, even though strictly speaking we are not in the Marcellus Gas Shale envelope. We are at one of the edges of this shale, but we are well within the Utica Shale. (That could mean something later down the road, the road where drill-baby-drill rules, no matter how deep.) Here’s why this issue matters to Rochester. Hemlock Lake one of our water sources for our city is within the Marcellus Shale. And beneath the Marcellus Shale is the large Utica Shale that does include the Rochester, NY region. Many at the meeting were concerned that fracking or hydrolic frackuring offers the possibility of contaminating our water supply, as it does in southern New York State, Pennsylvania, and beyond. Will fracking somehow infect our wells and water sources with fracking fluids (a chemical soup of undisclosed chemicals) and make our drinking water undrinkable. See: Buried Secrets - ProPublica “Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat,” a good place to read many investigative stories on this issue from ProPublica. The meeting included several presentations: one by physicist, a geologist, and homeowners dealing with well contamination in Pennsylvania. The packed room was treated with a wonderful explanation of this controversial energy issue and why we should care even if no one is actually drilling in our neighborhood. Of course, many in the Rochester area have cottages in the Marcellus Gas Shale region that would be affected. BTW: The answer to this question is that the possibility does exist that our water could become contaminated using fracking and you should find out more about this issue. However, no one dealt at last night meeting with the issue of whether we should be drilling for fossil fuels at all. Many of our local energy issues (off-shore wind, drilling, jobs, contamination, etc.) get so contested that we ignore the elephant in the room, Climate Change. Even if drilling for natural gas in the Marcellus Share by using fracking fluids were as safe as a slice apple pie, we shouldn’t be doing it. We should be focusing our energies on renewable energy and the technology for better energy storage (batteries) so that we don’t have to take these enormous risks to our drinking water and increase greenhouse gases into our atmosphere. But, for some reason we don’t talk about these issues in the press or in public. Climate Change is happening now and using more fossil fuels will increase the effects of Climate Change—these issues should be present in the same room when discussed. You can also check this site: FracTracker - Marcellus Shale Data Tracking “The Center for Healthy Environments & Communities (CHEC) was founded in 2004 at the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public Health (GSPH) under a grant from the Heinz Endowments.” Brighton holds forum on natural gas drilling | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle About 100 people gathered in Brighton Town Hall on Tuesday for a public forum about natural gas drilling. Speakers included a physicist, a geologist and a couple from Montrose, Pa., who addressed potential health, environmental and economic impacts. (September 22, 2010) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York
9/21/2010 - A note from Bill McKibben on Climate Change efforts this fall: "Moving onwards from the massive climate action mobilizations of 2009, 350.org will be focused on building a climate movement big enough, strong enough, and smart enough to meet the scale of this crisis. In 2010, we'll be working hard to keep the real science of climate change front-and-center in the political debate. Our motto for the year is "Get To Work"--we need to Get to Work to start changing our communities, and Get to Work to make our leaders realize that they actually need to lead. Our flagstone event for 2010 will be the Global Work Party on 10/10/10--"A Day to Celebrate Climate Solutions." You can sign up to host a local event at www.350.org/oct10, or search for an event to join at www.350.org/map. In the weeks and months ahead, we'll let you know about more exciting ways to plug into this growing movement. Expect to hear from us--and many many thanks for joining in this effort. Onwards, Bill McKibben and the 350.org Team P.S. You should also join us on Facebook (www.facebook.com/350.org) and follow us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/350) to stay in the loop on the global climate movement. "
9/21/2010 - Major Cleanup Event this Saturday You can make a difference in our area’s environment by helping a beach cleanup effort that includes many beaches. Also, you get to help out and learn about our local environment. You’ll get to meet a lot of people and get instructions as to what to do. Starts at 9AM at a number of local beaches, check it out: International Coastal Clean Up Event in Monroe County, NY “The International Coastal Cleanup Event will be held on September 25, 2010 this year. Registered Shoreline Sites will be posted when available. Currently, the following shoreline sites are registered are below, for more detailed info including start times, click here.”
9/20/2010 - Important meeting about energy, Rochester, and our water: HYDRAULIC FRACTURING: WHAT IS IT AND WHY SHOULD ROCHESTER CARE? Rochester, NY - - A public forum about the Marcellus Shale and how gas drilling impacts us will take place Tuesday, September 21, 2010, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in the Brighton Town Hall Auditorium (2300 Elmwood Avenue, Rochester, NY 14618). Admission is free. The panel of scientists and a family who is living through the nightmare right now in Dimock, PA, just south of Binghamton, aims to give the audience a balanced and truthful viewpoint of what will happen in New York state once drilling permits are granted to the gas companies. Dr Richard Young (presenter), SUNY Geneseo faculty member for 43 years, has spent most of his career investigating how the Grand Canyon was formed, He is among several geologists featured in the Season 2 premiere of the History Channel's "How The Earth Was Made" series. He was also featured in National Geographic's "Naked Science" series on PBS. Dr. William "Bill” Podulka (presenter) is a physicist with a lifelong interest in energy and environmental issues. In 2009, after learning about the impending gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale, he and his wife researched information on many different aspects of the gas drilling issue and created TCgasmap.org. He is chair of ROUSE (Residents Opposing Unsafe Shale-Gas Extraction), a grass-roots group in Tompkins County seeking to educate the public about gas drilling issues and working to protect residents from harm. Craig and Julie Sautner (presenters) are coping with the results of gas drilling in and around their property in northeastern Pennsylvania. The family lost their clean water source just one month after hydro-fracking gas drilling began. The Sautners are traveling to Rochester to voice their concerns about hydro-fracking and mobilize New Yorkers into action to protect their watersheds. Jack Ossont (moderator) is a member of the Committee to Preserve the Finger Lakes based in Yates County. After a stint as a Naval aviator during the Viet Nam era, Jack has worked tirelessly for over 30 years in community service including serving as a drug counselor, as a Yates County Legislator and as Director of Keuka Housing Council on affordable housing issues. He received the 20th Anniversary Environmental Leadership award from the NYS Citizen’s Environmental Coalition. This forum is organized and produced by two concerned Rochester residents, Anna Sears and Nedra Harvey. Media, please note: interviews may be arranged.
9/20/2010 - Learn how businesses can operate more environmentally sustainable, sponsored by one of our area’s environmental education leaders: The Center of Environmental Information: CEI: Workshop "Environmental Sustainability Workshop Monday and Tuesday, November 1 - 2, 2010 New York State Pollution Prevention Institute at RIT 111 Lomb Memorial Driv, Rochester, NY 14623 This event is sponsored by New York State Pollution Prevention Institute and NYSERDA An in-depth review of the principles, issues and practices associated with environmental sustainability. Examines environmental protection and resource conservation from a life cycle perspective. Develops knowledge and understanding of the basic elements of an environmental sustainability program. Emphasis will be on understanding the principles and techniques associated with evaluating and implementing an effective environmental sustainability program. " - from CEI: Center for Environmental Information
9/20/2010 - Reminder that yesterday’s World’s Canal Conference was about bicycles as Transportation for our region too. Rich DeSarra, other avid cyclists promote Canalway Trail | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle "It's not so much biking for recreation but more as an alternative means of transportation. We want to help people bicycle more," DeSarra says. (September 16, 2010) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York
9/19/2010 - Good local article on the importance of The Toll from Coal Report: Report: N.Y. 3rd in coal health damage - RocNow.com "ALBANY — Pollution in coal-fired power-plant emissions will cause an estimated 13,500 premature deaths nationwide and roughly 945 in New York this year, according to a Clean Air Task Force report. The study estimates that the total cost of health problems related to coal plants is more than $100 billion a year in the United States. New York ranks third for total number of deaths, hospital admissions and heart attacks projected, but it doesn’t make it into the top 15 states for per capita mortality risk. But the top metropolitan area in the country affected by the pollution includes New York City and parts of New Jersey and Pennsylvania, with an expected 799 deaths, 698 hospital admissions and 1,541 heart attacks this year. " September 12, 2010 RocNow.com
9/11/2010 - Important meeting: HYDRAULIC FRACTURING: WHAT IS IT AND WHY SHOULD ROCHESTER CARE? A public forum about the Marcellus Shale and how gas drilling impacts us all PRESENTERS Dr. Richard Young, Geologist, SUNY Geneseo Dr. William Podulka, Physicist, Ithaca, NY Craig and Julie Sautner, Residents of Montrose, PA MODERATOR Jack Ossont, Committee to Preserve the Finger Lakes DATE & TIME Tuesday, September 21, 2010, 6:30-8:30PM PLACE Brighton Town Hall Auditorium 2300 Elmwood Avenue, Rochester, NY 14618 Limited seating! Doors open 6PM
9/11/2010 - Knowing the impact of your Energy Source Matters: Check out this major study on how the burning of coal for our energy affects our health and environment. You can use interactive maps to Find Your Risk from Power Plant Pollution in your area. Many will avoid this study because it will make them uncomfortable about using our present energy sources, but they should read it. Much of the energy that we have used to heat our homes and light up our lights has taken a great toll on our health and our environment. It’s important to acknowledge this when making energy choices—or when we avoid backing renewable, non-pollution, choices like off-shore wind when they are offered in our area This report shows that much has been done to reduce the negative effects of coal and more needs to be done. It shows that governmental measures to reduce the pollution from coal work. But, it doesn’t show that moving to renewable energy wholesale would eliminate all of the effects of burning coal because the pollution affects of coal go further than just burning it. Digging it, transporting, and getting rid of the waste, and the removal of mountain tops all are a part of an energy source that needs to end. The Toll from Coal - Clean Air Task Force (CATF) "Among all industrial sources of air pollution, none poses greater risks to human health and the environment than coal-fired power plants. Emissions from coalfired power plants contribute to global warming, ozone smog, acid rain, regional haze, and–perhaps most consequential of all from a public health standpoint – fine particle pollution. In 2000 and again in 2004, the Clean Air Task Force commissioned comprehensive studies of health impacts caused by fine particle air pollution from the nation's roughly 500 coal-fired power plants. " (September 2010) Clean Air Task Force
9/11/2010 - ACTION: On one of the biggest energy/environmental issue of present, you can make comment about the EPA’s strategy on Hydraulic Fracturing: Outreach | Hydraulic Fracturing | US EPA "How to Provide EPA with Comments on the Hydraulic Fracturing Study Deadline for comments is September 28, 2010 Persons wishing to contribute comments to EPA regarding the proposed Hydraulic Fracturing Research Study may: present oral comments at the informational meetings; submit written comments at the informational meeting; submit electronic comments to EPA at firstname.lastname@example.org ; or send written comments to EPA at the following address: Jill Dean, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, Mailcode 4606M, Washington, DC 20460. "
9/10/2010 - No Excuse for Curb-siding your electronics: There are so many community recycling events that we post on this site, on our calendar, that no one in the entire Rochester, NY region should be putting their television or computers on the curb to be thrown into a landfill. Just check the calendar for the nearest electronic recycling event. Eventually, it will be illegal in New York State to do this. You, a resident, could get fined for putting your TV or computer out to the curb to the tune of $150 in 2015. Check out: Electronic Equipment Recycling and Reuse Act - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation “The NYS Electronic Equipment Recycling and Reuse Act (PDF) (38 kb) (Article 27, Title 26 of the Environmental Conservation Law) was signed into law by the Governor on May 28, 2010. The law will ensure that every New Yorker will have the opportunity to recycle their electronic waste in an environmentally responsible manner. The law requires manufacturers to establish a convenient system for the collection, handling, and recycling or reuse of electronic waste. Manufacturers of covered electronic equipment will be responsible for implementing and maintaining an acceptance program for the discarded electronic waste, with oversight by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.” - New York State Department of Environmental Conservation | COMPUTER AND ELECTRONICS RECYCLING | SATURDAY, 10/16 The Town of Pittsford, in partnership with Maven Technologies, will sponsor a computer and electronics recycling event on Saturday, 10/16 from 9AM to 2PM in the parking lot of Pittsford Mendon High School. No appointment or packaging needed. Accepted items include computers, laptops, modems, servers, peripherals, GPS Units, cell phones, fax machines, copiers, CD players, IT equipment, audio/visual equipment, telecommunications equipment. Please note there will be a charge for monitors ($5), TVs ($10) and microwaves ($10). For more information, click HERE (Computer and Electronics Recycling | Town of Pittsford).
9/10/2010 - BP Oil Spill article: Get a good understanding of the BP Oil Spill crisis and how it may be long-term. This article by Mother Jones is representative of non-corporate-journalism that goes into the kind of depth we the public need to know about environmental situations. The spin in the article, if any, is not framed for corporate interests, the spin is about sustainability for our ocean and wetland environments. This is the kind of journalism that we need to make wise decisions about our environment. It’s a long article, so take a moment and get the whole picture of the BP Oil Spill. The BP Cover-Up | Mother Jones "BP and the government say the spill is fast disappearing—but dramatic new science reveals that its worst effects may be yet to come. " Mother Jones | Smart, Fearless Journalism
9/9/2010 - Learn how some people in our area are Living Green: Got a green house? Show it off | 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle "On Oct. 2, the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association will sponsor its annual Green Buildings Open House Tour. People who are curious about residential-scale wind turbines or solar energy panels or geothermal heating systems can visit homes where they are up and running and ask questions of their owners. Visit the NESEA website for green buildings for a complete list of homes that will be open to the public during the tour " - September 7, 2010) 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
9/9/2010 - ACTION: Message from Walter Hang "URGENT CITIZEN ACTION ALERT-URGENT CITIZEN ACTION ALERT-URGENT CITIZEN ACTION ALERT Greetings, Citizens concerned about Marcellus Shale horizontal hydrofracking will hold a rally at 10:00 AM on September 13th in front of the downtown Federal Building (15 Henry Street) in Binghamton, NY. This demonstration of grassroots activism and citizen democracy will take place prior to the Environmental Protection Agency's national hydrofracturing hearing. EPA's event will be held next door. I implore all activists working to prevent shale gas hazards in New York to attend the rally. EPA supports many of the concerns spelled out in the coalition letter requesting the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to withdraw its fatally-flawed draft Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS). Now that we have achieved our goal of more than 10,000 signatories to that letter, we must intensify pressure on EPA to enforce its concerns. See EPA's landmark 12/30/09 letter to DEC: EPA's 12/30/2009 letter regarding dSGEIS | Toxics Targeting EPA's hearing will be a huge event in the national shale gas debate. There should be extensive media coverage. Norwegian National TV is coming!!! Even if you do not plan to comment on EPA's hydrofracking study, please show your strong visible support by joining us. Binghamton is arguably the epicenter of New York's Marcellus Shale region. It has become a crucial horizontal hydrofracking battleground. "
9/9/2010 - Think of Ride-Sharing as a transportation option. Check out this resource for finding ride-sharing options in our area: New York Carpool / Rideshare: 26 car pool / ride share listings "Transportation is one of the biggest contributors of greenhouse emissions. If you look out at city traffic, or at a busy interstate, it's easy to see why. Millions of people drive great distances alone every day. It takes a lot of energy to push all those vehicles. And so many of those people are going the same way. Why not share the ride? eRideShare puts the power of the Internet to work, connecting commuters or cross-country travelers going the same way. Put two people together in one car instead of separately in two cars, and the greenhouse emissions are cut in half. This is significant impact. You still get where you want to go, while saving plenty of cash. Maybe you'll even make a new friend or two. " -eRideShare.com Carpool / Rideshare Community
9/9/2010 - Food and our environment: Good article on food, local community-supported agriculture, (CSA), and our environment. CSAs: Choosing the Food Less Traveled - Restaurant Articles - Rochester City Newspaper "While popular culture isn't exactly offering up healthy-life-choice alternatives, the past decade or so has seen increased public discussion surrounding our impending dietary doom. Films like Robert Kenner's "Food, Inc." and literature by Michael Pollan and Barbara Kingsolver warn us that, it may not be today, it may not be tomorrow, but the end of human health and epicurean freedom as we know them has been in the works for decades, a callous side effect of big business. And all the while, we seem to have been sleeping, or living that American dream where convenience trumps all. " September 8, 2010) Rochester NY News, Events, Restaurants, Music, Entertainment, Nightlife - Rochester City Newspaper
9/8/2010 - Need a little Eco-humor? A friend sent me this amusing video on the life of a plastic bag. Whatever way we can get our point across to the public that our way of living and our relation to our environment is getting absurd and needs changing to a sustainable existence is a good idea: Check this out: Planet Earth Meets Plastic Bag in Hilarious Mockumentary "The short film details the journey of a single-use plastic bag through the open plains of the asphalt jungle, facing many foes on the way. Will the plastic bag ultimately survive the perilous travails, and complete its migration to the sea where it can join millions of tons of other plastic to live indefinitely? "
9/08/2010 - ACTION: Action Alert - Comment on Hydro-Fracking "CITIZENS CAMPAIGN FOR THE ENVIRONMENT ACTION ALERT UPDATE: Public Hearing Rescheduled Protecting Our Water Submit Comments on Hydro-Fracking Study IMPORTANT UPDATE: The public hearing originally scheduled for 8/12/2010 in Binghamton and then moved to Syracuse has been rescheduled for September 13 and 15, 2010, in Binghamton, NY. Details for the new hearings are below. " --from Citizens Campaign for the Environment - New York and Connecticut Environmental Protection Preservation and Advocacy
9/08/2010 - Living Environmentally Friendly is ‘Addictive?’ It is a strange use of the word ‘addictive’ to describe a family who wants to live responsible and sustainably. One with an addictive attitude is usually associated with having a psychological or physical dependency on something that is bad for you. For example, our society has an addictive behavior towards burning fossil fuels for energy because we keep doing it even though it is bad for our environment because it warms the planet and puts pollutants into the air. I’m all for using catchy words and phrases in my articles headlines to capture the public’s attention. But, using ‘addictive’ in this way is incorrect and suggests that one can go overboard on living sustainably. Which is nonsense. The reverse is true. If we don’t align our behavior to the laws of physics that is our environment we will be living unattainably, which most of us are. This family is leading the way to a sustainable future; the author of this headline is still addicted to an unsustainable existence. An addictive eco-attitude in Irondequoit | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle IRONDEQUOIT Family goes from 'energy-sucking' to energy-efficient — A windmill, greenhouse and chicken coop are outside indicators that things are a bit different at Jodi and Ted Aman's house on St. Joseph Street. The inside reveals other signs, such as an all-concrete, uncovered floor, as well as reused doors, cabinets and handrails. The Amans also have a geothermal heating and cooling system, which extracts energy from the Earth's core, and a solar design to maximize energy from the sun. (September, 8, 2010) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York [more on Green Living in our area]
9/07/2010 - Is Water Diversion from the Great Lakes Going to Happen? Whether Denis Kucinich is right and there is a loophole in the agreements, so that water can be taken from the Great Lakes basin or not, I think it will happen anyway. Regardless of any agreement, international or not, when desperate areas outside the Great Lakes basin need fresh water to survive, I believe there will be a way to give it to them. Scientifically, this will change the character of the Great Lakes which only has a 1% natural refill of water. Morally, how do you keep a vast amount of fresh water from those who are desperate? We are a long way from addressing this issue. PolitiFact Ohio | Dennis Kucinich warns that loophole in the Great Lakes compact could allow exploitation of water Think of the Great Lakes compact as a fence. The agreement is meant to wrap around the Great Lakes watershed and keep people from taking water out. But U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich isn’t so sure. He fears the states could be powerless to stop Great Lakes water from being exported from the watershed in small bottles. The lakes, 84 percent of North America’s surface water supply, are one of the world’s greatest natural resources that must be protected, he says. (September 1, 2010) PolitiFact Ohio | Sorting out the truth in politics
9/07/2010 - How many natural gas disasters before we get it? How many evacuations do we need before we recognize the great cost to our safety and environment drilling for natural gas causes? The Daily Mail > Archives > News > Gas leak revives painful memories Blenheim Pipeline Disaster fresh on officials’ minds GILBOA — A leak in a natural gas pipeline owned by Texas-based Enterpirse TE Products (formerly Texas Eastern), in the area of a Keyserkill Road residence in the town of Broome, caused evacuation of more than 100 people over a three mile radius late Friday afternoon. Four homes remained under evacuation notice Sunday night as Enterprise crews continued to work on installing stopples on both sides of the leak that would allow them to remove residual product from the line that runs from Watkins Glen to Selkirk. Once all the material has been flared (burned off), work will begin to replace the leaking section of the eight inch transportation pipeline. (August 31 2010) The Daily Mail > Front
9/07/2010 - Is Fracking for Natural Gas Safe? Check out the now famous issue of tap water on fire: Mark And Linda Wilfong: West Virginia Couple's Tap Water Lights On Fire, House Smells Like Natural Gas Ever Since Well Drilled (VIDEO) In this video from CNN, WDTV visits a West Virginia couple who have been experiencing some disastrous problems with their running water. Ever since Mark and Linda Wilfong drilled their new water well, they've had nothing but trouble. Their tap water now lights on fire and their house reeks of natural gas. "I've gone to the doctor with ear aches. I mean, the fumes are so bad," Mark Wilfong tells WDTV. (September 7, 2010) Breaking News and Opinion on The Huffington Post
9/06/2010 - Extended comment period on Rochester Bicycle Master Plan until Friday Sept. 10th : If you could not attend any of the four Rochester Bicycle Master Plan public workshops held last week you still have an opportunity to send in your comments. Rochester Bicycling Club » Rochester Bicycle Master Plan Comment Period extended to Friday September 10 Comments Feed All meeting materials are available on the City’s website: Rochester Bicycling Master Plan look for “Public Involvement Materials.” Download or view the materials.
9/06/2010 - Solving Climate Change: Our US Congress cannot get anything done on Climate Change making it problematic whether we can act on something as large and looming as the warming up of our planet. But, maybe something can be done through the Environmental Protection Agency. EPA to issue more rules in climate fight | Reuters (Reuters) - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will roll out more regulations on greenhouse gases and other pollution to help fight climate change, but they will not be as strong as action by Congress, a senior administration official said. The agency "has a huge role to play in continuing the work to move from where we are now to lower carbon emissions", said the official, who did not want to be identified as the EPA policies are still being formed. (September 2, 2010) Reuters Video: Top Video News
9/04/2010 - Education Sustainability Theme: We are heartened to see that at least one of our schools of higher learning is focusing on sustainability. At this time, when our economy is still struggling for jobs and our environmental problems are more dear, it would be prudent to see all our area’s education facilities focus on the importance of educating our young on sustainability. But it shouldn’t just be a catchy theme for this year. Our educational institutions should be so in tune with the importance of ‘getting it’ on our environment and how everything we do, how we shop, what employment we have, what stocks we invest in, all are related to our environment and being able to sustain ourselves in it. Some day we won’t be talking about sustainability in our education, in our economy, or in the way we build because there will be no other way. Everything we do will have to be sustainable. Until we get to that point, it is critical that we educate our young on a component of their education that has been missing. Environment, sustainability, and producing a green economy are not simply a temporary popular goal—there is no other way to survive. MCC Fall Semester is More Green Monroe Community College’s school colors are black and gold, but students this fall will be seeing more green. A host of environmentally-conscious initiatives will greet students when classes begin Tuesday, Sept. 7: Green Courses Since Fall 2008, MCC students have been able to enroll in courses with a sustainability theme. (September 1, 2010) MCC NEWS [more on Environmental Education in our area]
9/04/2010 - ACTION: Make public comment on DEC's "Strategic Plan for State Forest Management." DEC Releases Strategic Plan for State Forest Management - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation Builds on Momentum of "Green Certification" of State Forests New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Pete Grannis today announced the release of a draft "Strategic Plan for State Forest Management." The plan will guide management of the 786,000-acre state forest holdings and is available for public review and comment through Oct. 29. Electronic copies of the draft plan are available on the DEC website. To request a CD, send an e-mail to email@example.com , or mail a request to Strategic Plan for State Forest Management, NYS DEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4255. Comments can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to Strategic Plan for State Forest Management, NYS DEC, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4255. Public Hearing Schedule Nine hearing have been scheduled. Each meeting will consist of two parts: 1) 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., informal information session with DEC staff; 2) 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., public hearing. Accommodation for people with disabilities will be made upon request to Justin Perry by calling (518) 402-9428 or by e-mailing email@example.com
9/03/2010 - Green Energy future: Check out this site from the US Department of Energy on how the US is moving towards green energy. You may get an idea how you can get a green job or start up a green energy business. Our government is moving towards green energy, which means you tax dollars are being used to inform you about the possibilities, so you may as well use this site. Energy Empowers "Welcome to Energy Empowers: an information service capturing the hearts and minds of the people building America's clean energy economy. The Department of Energy (DOE) recognizes the importance of discussing successful domestic outcomes within the clean energy sector. Here at Energy Empowers, we're telling your stories to give a glimpse of how, together, we are building America's new energy economy — by improving efficiency, by building sustainable businesses that create new jobs, and by dusting off age-old skills and using them in new ways to generate clean energy. It's our mission to put names and faces to the people who work on energy efficiency in the residential, commercial, and industrial sectors and renewable projects, including solar, wind and water, biomass, geothermal, and hydrogen and fuel cells, supported by the DOE and beyond. " - Department of Energy
9/03/2010 - Shopping for electronics for School? Make sure your electronic stuff meets the best standards for energy consumption and other environmental consideration. These suggestions come from the EPA: 09/02/2010: Start the School Year with EPA’s Energy Star "WASHINGTON - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is encouraging students and their parents to support the environment by shopping for back-to-school clothes and supplies at retail stores that have earned the Energy Star label. Energy Star saves Americans energy and helps them protect the environment by avoiding greenhouse gas emissions. Energy Star labeled stores have features that set them apart from typical stores, such as energy efficient lighting, registers that go to sleep when not in use, and store processes for shutting off equipment during closed hours. Energy Star labeled stores are independently verified to meet strict energy efficiency performance levels set by EPA. Stores that have earned the Energy Star perform in the top 25 percent of stores nationwide, use at least 35 percent less energy and emit at least 35 percent less greenhouse gas emissions than their peers. Find stores nearby that have earned EPA’s Energy Star: Showing ENERGY STAR Labeled Retails | Find stores that sell Energy Star qualified products ENERGY STAR "
9/02/2010 - ACTION: Sierra Club: Help Ban Toxics from Children's Toy Jewelry! Help Ban Toxics from Children's Toy Jewelry! After Congress acted, the Consumer Product Safety Commission finally took action to protect children from lead in children's products. Now another dangerous toxin, cadmium, is being found in children’s toy jewelry. Please take a moment today and tell the Commission to protect our families from cadmium in children's toys! --from Sierra Club Home Page: Explore, Enjoy and Protect the Planet
9/01/2010 - Environmental film and talk coming up: DIRT! THE MOVIE Film presented and discussion facilitated by Elizabeth Pixley, Emeritus Professor of Biology, Monroe Community College Thursday September 16th 7:00 – 9:00 PM Baha’i Center, 693 East Avenue, Rochester (Entrance and parking off Oxford St.) FREE and open to the public. We will watch a new documentary about soil and its importance in ecosystems, titled “Dirt! The Movie.” The movie was inspired by William Bryant Logan’s book Dirt: The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth – it is a look into the history and current state of the living organic matter that we come from and will later return to. We cannot survive as a species without viable soil for growing food. Also, with today’s renewed interest in local and organic food, as well as sustainability of ecosystems, the film is a relevant addition to the discussion. And most important of all - this film shows people doing positive things to make a difference! Dirt is a part of everything we eat, drink and breathe. Which is why we should stop treating it like, well…dirt. Trailer: Dirt! The Movie This is part of a series of monthly video and discussion presentations in the Creating the Future series for 2010. Each is held at the Baha’i Center, at 7:00 PM on the third Thursday of the month.
9/01/2010 - More Recycling: More residents in our area seem more interested in recycling more. One of the ways this is demonstrated are the frequent recycling events in our area and weekly farmer’s market recycling, like those at Brighton. Here’s another idea about how to increase recycling. Decrease waste pickup and increase recycling pickups. I don’t know if this would work in our area, but it’s another idea being demonstrated in Sarasota, Florida. Check this out: Sarasota will pick up trash less often, but recycle more | HeraldTribune.com "We hear a lot nowadays about creating a more sustainable, environmentally responsible community -- that we should reduce consumption, re-use items and recycle more. In the city of Sarasota, we agree wholeheartedly. That's why sustainability is one of the City Commission's top priorities. Over the past four years, we have begun to invest in sustainability across all operations of the city, investments that not only have immediate ecological returns but short- and long-term financial rewards for taxpayers as well. We realize that one of the cornerstones to a successful sustainability plan is a vibrant recycling program which encourages the reduction of solid waste going to our local landfill. One of the trailblazers in Florida of mandatory recycling in the early '90s, our curbside recycling program, starting tomorrow, will allow residents to recycle much more. By now, city residents should have received postcards in the mail and notes on their green trash cart announcing that the city of Sarasota is changing from twice-a-week trash collection to once-a-week, with expanded recycling. " (August 31, 2010) Sarasota Florida News, Sarasota Weather, Sports and Business | HeraldTribune.com | Sarasota Herald-Tribune