Updates Nov - Dec 2000
12/27/00 -- Seems like a pretty good idea to me. Why
hasn't Monroe County adopted PESTICIDE
NOTIFICATION LAW? Here's the NYS Attorney General's CITIZENS'
GUIDE TO PESTICIDE NOTIFICATION LAWS
IN NEW YORK STATE
12/24/00 -- One of the news items we'll be watching is to see whether or not the new administration is going to dismantle the environmental measures of the Clinton administration. Here's a major item next to our door, we'll be watching: New EPA chief will have say in Hudson cleanup Dredging opponents, supporters wait to see New Jersey governor's stand on $460 million proposal. Whether the Environmental Protection Agency's $460 million dredging plan for the Upper Hudson River will become reality could lie in the hands of New Jersey Gov. Christine Todd Whitman, who is expected to be appointed to head the federal agency in charge of the river's cleanup by President-elect George W. Bush today. (December 24, 2000) Times Union.
12/24/00 -- This suggestion was just sent to me by a
friend: "Let this be
your good deed for today ... it only takes a second.
Go to the site
below. All you do is click a button and a woman gets a
mammogram at no cost to you. It is paid for by corporate sponsors
advertising in the process because you see their logo).
All you do is go to the site and click on the free button. It takes one-second.
However, you're only allowed one donation so please pass
12/22/00 -- Very important story about Acid Rain: This page, by our NYS Attorney includes a map of the smoke stacks that our polluting our area's environment: SECOND MAJOR UTILITY AGREES TO CUT ACID RAIN EMISSIONS Ten Midwest Power Plants Will Dramatically Reduce Levels of Toxic Pollution Under Agreement Negotiated by Spitzer and Feds. Attorney General Eliot Spitzer and federal officials today announced that one of the nation’s largest electric utility companies has agreed to slash pollution levels at 10 Midwest power plants that cause acid rain and smog in New York.-- (December 22, 2000) Office of NYS Attorney General Eliot Spitzer
12/21/00 -- Just down the NYS Thruway a major environmental story is unfolding that will affect all our lives--the GE/Hudson River/PCB controversy. Here's my thoughts on the subject:
General Electric’s behavior in the Hudson River/PCB disputer with the EPA can be likened to a situation where the murderer in a crime can, instead of being taken to jail, arraigned, and his case brought to justice, argue his case in public. The murderer is allowed to go to the media and say to the public, “Sure I’ve killed this person, but the victim’s removal by the police is the real crime here. To have the police come into the community with their flashing lights and all the other officials associated with a crime will cause more disruption than the little crime I’ve committed. We should just let the victim lie on the sidewalk with a knife in his heart.”
There is no doubt that GE polluted forty miles of the Hudson River with thousands of tons of the most toxic chemicals ever created. There is no doubt that PCBs do not breakdown naturally and are assimilated harmlessly in the environment. We know this in part because no one has conducted a complete biodiversity study of the region in question before GE dumped PCBs there and calculated the effects on the environment afterwards. (This is in itself a tragedy because we have never done a complete biodiversity study before we changed our environment.)
For the public to allow this environmental disaster (I swam in the Hudson River all through my childhood) to be framed as an argument between GE and the EPA is a dangerous illusion. There is no arguing with Nature—you pollute, you die.
I find the argument by GE that the real crime are the solutions required by the EPA—dredging, disruption of the river, lights, bad odors, air and light pollution, etc,-- to be a monstrosity of corporate hubris and denial. The public seems to have missed this pivotal point: These measures would not be necessary if GE had not callously dumped thousands of tons of dangerous chemical into our waters.
If the public allows itself to be swayed by the implied threat of corporations like GE that if they don’t survive (that their existence could be jeopardized by having to pay for these kind of cleanups) that the public might not survive the job loss, then our destruction is insured. Nothing is more important than a healthy environment, because anything else you want, need, or desire for your children isn’t going to happen without water to drink and air to breathe.
Do not let a corporation like GE be allowed to frame this environmental disaster, any more than you would allow a murderer to plead his case on prime time TV. Take responsibility for learning about PCB’s in the environment. Be aware that corporations, like HAL- the seemingly benign computer in 2001 A Space Odyssey, has only one single purpose for its existence—its own survival.
Take note: This case where GE will even try and dismantle our Superfund law to fight this case is the kind of issues we will be facing in this century. Its outcome and the thousands of cases like this will determine whether or not we will face our environmental problems with reason and information or allow ourselves the dangerous illusion that the real argument is between two opposing sides. The third side will always win—Nature.
12/21/00 -- City Newspaper (Dec. 20-26, 2000) has an excellent article on one of the most important environmental topics for the Rochester--Lead Poisoning. Cleaning house: leading against lead poisoning. Be sure to read this very important article and how lead poisoning equates with poverty in Rochester. Pick up City--Greater Rochester's Alternative Newsweekly -- free from around most restaurants and places where newspapers are sold in and around Rochester.
12/20/00 -- RochesterEnvironment.com is now on the The Sound Bytes Ring. Rochester has a unique and invaluable Internet and computer show, Sound Bytes, where computer experts answer for free listeners questions about how to keep their computers running smoothly. This program has been instrumental in my maintaining RochesterEnvironment.com and I encourage anyone with a computer and an Internet connection to tune into this program every Saturday at 1PM on 1370 AM, WXXI. And, be a contributor.
12/19/00 -- I'm passing this message on: "Hi, I want
to update you on our work to protect children's
health and our community's right to know about lead pollution. Recently, we released a report authored by the National
Environmental Trust that found more than 360,000 children in the U.S. - more than 1 in 200 - suffer from developmental
or neurological disabilities caused by toxic exposures. U.S. industries reported releasing 1.2 billion pounds
of chemicals in 1998 that can affect children's development and learning. Ask President Clinton to expand our right to know about lead pollution by requiring any industrial facility that uses 10 or more pounds of lead to report their
pollution to the public at http://pirg.org/alerts/route.asp?id=37&id4=AN BACKGROUND According to PIRG research, lead is one of the substances most notorious for its effects on children's development and is vastly under-reported because of flaws in the federal community right-to-know program. This despite the fact that millions of children have levels of lead in their bodies higher than the government's "acceptable" exposure level and recent research shows that the government's level may be four times too high. Children's exposure to lead is linked to delayed mental and physical development, including lowered IQ, impaired hearing, slowed growth, and even increased likelihood of later juvenile delinquency or criminal behavior. The EPA has proposed requiring more facilities to report their pollution, but the proposal has been at the White House since mid-summer despite a 1998 Earth Day promise by Vice President Gore. Even worse, industry allies in Washington are asking the government to weaken the community right-to-know program. Unless a final policy is issued soon, Americans will be kept in the dark about this dangerous pollution. Ask the President to expand our right to know about toxic pollution by requiring any industrial facility that uses 10 or more pounds of lead to report their pollution to the public at http://pirg.org/alerts/route.asp?id=37&id4=AN Thank you for your support, and please feel free to share this with your family and friends, Jeremiah Baumann U.S. PIRG Environmental Health and Toxics Advocate http://www.uspirg.org
12/19/00 -- As Road Salt is in the
news, and we are stuck
with it for a while (because of its cheap cost), here's an interesting piece
about the damage to our environment it can cause: Road
Salt's Effects on Ground Water Quality
The following is mainly the results of a study conducted by Ken W.F. Howard, Joe I. Boyce, Steve J. Livingston, Sean Salvatori, and the Groundwater Research Group at the University of Toronto, Canada from GSA TODAY in 1993.
12/17/00 -- Read an excellent story about the problems with Brownfields and how a nearby community is dealing with it: Brownfields: Broome's catch-22 Cleanup costs chase developers to greener pastures Imagine 100 acres of crumbling asphalt, vacant factories and ground tinged with chemicals. If you live in Broome County, it's a wasteland in your hometown, and nobody can seem to do much about it. (December 17, 2000) Press& Sun Bulletin.
12/17/00 -- Great Lakes heath update. This just came out this week. Great Lakes governors' proposed Annex 2001- released December 14, 2000 The text of the governors' "Annex 2001"
12/15/00 -- Things are just peachy with our environment,
right? Well, that's what seems to be the case when you listen to the
news on the radio, watch TV, read our newspapers. Well, maybe not:
Here's a report on Monroe County's air
by Environmental Defense www.scorecard.org
"Community Report for MONROE County, NY All data are the latest
available from government sources as processed and interpreted by our
scientists and computer experts. AIR - 713,968 people in MONROE County
face a cancer risk more than 100 times the goal set by the Clean Air Act.
- In 1996, this county ranked among the worst 20% of all counties in
the US in terms of emissions of volatile organic compounds
(ozone season daily average)."
12/14/00 -- I'm passing on this important Internet
service: The Questions: Do you know how polluted your neighborhood is?
* Might there be an additional cancer risk? * Would you like to know the
names of the polluters close to home? * Curious about how your neighborhood
compares with others?* Want to know what you can do Visit http://www.ProcessRequest.com/apps/redir.asp?link=XbcbgiehCJ,YedifadgcDB
and complete the form. We'll prepare your report and email it to you within 1 hour. In the meantime, here's some more information about our organization. --- Environmental Defense is a leading national non-profit organization dedicated to
protecting the environmental rights of all people, including future generations.
12/13/00 -- New Essay: Cancer Clusters After the New York State Department of Health released its cancer maps (www.health.state.ny.us) recently, there have been some statements by our public officials and local medical personnel denying the possibility that the cause of these cancers could be environmental. We are urged not to panic, not to think that even though this study is one of the most comprehensive cancer-mapping projects in the nation that there should be any connection between specific cancers (lung, breast, and colorectal cancer) and where these cancers are found. We are told that high incidences of cancer are normal. We are told that these increased incidence rates occur in specific areas because more people are being screened, or because more people are finding their cancer early in those areas. Smoking is leading cause for lung cancer, we are told.
12/12/00 -- Get the links for the story on Hudson River PCB's from Poughkeepsie Journal.
12/12/00 -- DREDGING PLAN The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will detail its proposal for removing PCBs from the Hudson at a public meeting today in Saratoga Springs, at the City Center on Broadway, beginning at 4:30 p.m. with an open house. Thursday, the EPA will hold a meeting in Poughkeepsie at the Sheraton Civic Center Hotel, also beginning with an open house at 4:30 p.m., with the meeting to begin at 7. An eight-page summary of the EPA's preferred remedy for Hudson River PCB contamination can be found on the Internet at www.epa.gov/hudson/summ-prefd-remedy.pdf.
12/10/00 -- Essay: False Worlds After trying to reason a friend out of his belief in alien visitations, I've come to the conclusion that it's almost an impossible task to relieve people of their strongly held beliefs-no matter how false. And yet, the effort to do so is important because a false model of reality is largely responsible for the demise of the genuine reality. Especially pernicious is the false model of reality where it is perceived by the public that the needs of our corporations can be superimposed on our environment.
12/10/00 -- I don't think I'm being overly dramatic in saying that this quote shows that our media has done a profoundly bad job in informing us about the health of our local environment: "The state is not being a good environmental steward of its own facilities . . . If this was a report card, it would be somewhere between a D and a C minus." -from State's own cleanup record poor Report finds serious violations rising in agencies' own back yards ALBANY, N.Y. (December 10, 2000) -- State agencies have failed to correct many of their own serious environmental problems, including raw sewage being discharged at a Livingston County prison, according to a new Department of Environmental Conservation report. (December 10, 2000) DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
12/10/00 -- Major publication by The NYS DEC. NYS DEC -2000- 30 years of Environmental Progress. This is quite lengthy, but here's what your New York State Department of the Environment has been up to: In New York State, the 30 years of DEC's history have seen: A remarkable recovery of air, land and water quality Renewal of fish, wildlife and forests Growth of safe waste management and recycling Expansion of opportunities for outdoor recreation Growing sophistication in citizen involvement This 30th Anniversary Report highlights the key achievements of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Links throughout the report lead to further detail about the department's work.
12/10/00 -- Please read: Statement by Commissioner John P. Cahill New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. After years of scientific and technical studies, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) scientists and engineering experts have determined that active remediation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the Hudson River is the most appropriate and effective way to mitigate the risks those contaminants pose to public health and the environment, a judgment shared by the scientific and technical staff at the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC).
Lost data base: I’ve just finished The
American Revolution by Bruce Lancaster and it occurred to me that
something profound has been lost to us.
As General Sullivan and General Clinton march northwards to complete
General George Washington’s 1789 command that the Indians in Western New
York State be eliminated, author Lancaster quotes passages of the American
soldiers as they pass through the heavy forests near Canandaigua and
Honeoye. The solders remark
about how thick and almost impenetrable the forests are.
Not today, of course. What
made me wonder about that march two centuries ago was the lost of
biodiversity information we will never have access to. The
world that these men marched through, our area long ago, does not exist in a
very profound sense—far more ominous than the nostalgic sense.
Then, in 1789, there were no PCB’s or DDT in the environment.
The planet has warmed. Most
of the trees then are gone. We
have no idea what constitutes a health pristine environment for our area,
because no one did a complete data base of what a perfectly working
environment was before we polluted and radically changed it. I
am not have a moment of sentimentality about what has been lost—for that
is life. What I am concerned
about is how oblivious we are of the havoc place on our environment without
any knowledge at all about how to right our environment when it fails.
12/08/00 -- Nader's Message: Regardless of the emphasis that our news media has put on Nader's visit, the majority of his speech was not about the election debacle-our media's present obsession. I did attend Ralph Nader's speech last night, "Democracy and Big Business," and I agree with his premise that we have too easily given up our rights. Even our environmental rights. Here are some highlights of his talk: "We have undersold ourselves. Information is the currency of democracy. Expectation levels are too low in our ability to take back our democracy. We must put issues into the democratic process - not corporate." In the realm of our environment, that which sustains us (not necessarily fussy animals we think would be nice to keep around for our enjoyment), corporate greed has severely compromised our future. You only have to take a look at Rochester Issues to get an idea of the breath of environmental concerns that we have just in Rochester, and compare them with what you read, see, and hear in our local media. We being shortchanged in how the environment-arguably the most important issue there is, is being covered in the news, how our politicians deal with these issues, and how corporation have been allowed to duck their responsibilities, putting all of our futures in jeopardy. Ralph Nader is getting the message out that we need to reclaim our democracy from corporate greed, but how many understand this crucial issue, or even know about it? If you only listen to mainstream media, you aren't going to get the message because, as the media has framed the environmental situation, corporations (which control the media) shape what we are exposed to in the media. Compare the environmental information you find on the Internet, with what you get on TV, radio, and your local newspaper. Take a look at the stories cover on this page and compare them with what your local media has offered you.
12/07/00 -- This is a major story that all should be aware
of. When you assume that companies do not need to adhere to
comprehensive environmental recommendations, but can be trusted to conduct
themselves for the good of all--including to respect our environment--then
take a look at how GE is conducting themselves across the state. http://www.newyorkwired.com/frnewslinx.htm#Environment
Instead of apologizing to the community for throwing tons of PCB's, one of
the most toxic of chemicals, into the Hudson River and cleaning it up, it
has conducted a campaign to thwart the EPA. "The EPA recommended
removing 2.65 million cubic yards of sediment contaminated by PCBs, or
polychlorinated biphenyls, in 40 pollution "hot spots" along a
35-mile stretch of the river. GE, which dumped PCBs into the river until it
became illegal in 1977, would have to pay $460 million for the work."
fights Hudson dredging It says EPA's $460 million forced cleanup
is 'monstrous,' unnecessary -- COLONIE, N.Y. -- General Electric Co. called
the federal government's plan for dredging the Hudson River
"monstrous" and "destructive" and vowed yesterday to
fight it. (December 7, 2000)
CHRONICLE Also, read: EPA
PROPOSES COMPREHENSIVE PLAN TO CLEAN UP HUDSON RIVER PCBS- This Proposal
Based on Extensive Scientific Study of PCB Risks to People and Wildlife. --www.epa.gov/region2
Also, EPA Announces its
Preferred Cleanup Plan
12/07/00 -- Tonight -- Ralph Nader Speaking At RIT
Thursday Henrietta, NY year's Green Party presidential candidate Ralph Nader
will visit Rochester Thursday. Mr. Nader is scheduled to speak at RIT at
7:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. NewsSource
13 Mr. Nader will be speaking about "Democracy and Big
12/07/00 -- Be sure to ready Jack Bradigan Spula's article, Feeling The Heat, in City --Greater Rochester's Alternative Newsweekly. (You can find this newsletter free at most businesses in Rochester.) Spula gives a comprehensive explanation as to how the United States dragged its feet at the talks in the Hague. The talks failed to uphold the Kyoto Protocol which was an attempt to get countries around the world to put a halt to the production of man-made greenhouse gasses, which is now known to be one of the main contributors to Global Warming.
12/07/00 -- It's a sad day that Monroe County has chosen not to adopt the Pesticide Notification Law. It's a sure sign that it is more important that companies survive than people. Why, if it is in the safe interest of the public, would a company choose not to notify neighbors that a potentially dangerous chemical is going to be sprayed nearby? Why just after a major report that Monroe County has some of the highest pesticide levels in the state would we choose not to pass this law?
12/06/00 -- 8,000 Lake Erie Water Birds Dead of Botulism, Experts Say AMBURG, N.Y., Dec. 5 (AP) — A puzzling outbreak of botulism along Lake Erie has killed about 8,000 water birds, including perhaps a thousand common loons, state environmental officials said today. By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS I'm concerned that our media is ignoring a major environmental news story that could affect our environment. Even as reported, the emphasis about these deal birds, the focus that I have been hearing is that the public will miss these popular birds if their numbers continue to drop. Our experts are saying this about these birds dying: "pretty bad news for that well-liked species, finding hundreds dead along the beach," said Ken Robley of the DEC's wildlife division. "Are we still going to have a population that comes through this area for us to enjoy and view?" Well, the problem is not whether or not we will miss birds we like to see, it's about much more. Birds, because of their high metabolism and their place in our environment, are some of the first species that die when something pernicious is happening in the environment. Then Canary in the coalmine thing. And, also indigenous birds species die out, our environment changes because an important piece will be missing in the complex web of life that sustains us. Our media, and even our public officials, are not properly informing us of the news we need to know, and they do not understand that the large number of bird deaths isn't about the loss of pretty things to look at, but a major disturbance in the system of life that sustains us.
12/06/00 -- Track the spread of the West Nile Virus - Total West Nile positive results to date by county. --from the NYS Health Department.
12/05/00 -- RochesterEnvironment.com is a part of the
University of Rochester Community
Board. Composed of members of local Rochester-area community organizations, our Community Advisory Board provides a unique forum for discussion of human environmental health issues. The board acts as a community liaison -- obtaining information on community-based environmental issues and concerns, and disseminating information to the community regarding university research and outreach programs.
12/05/00 -- Could global warming affect the Great Lakes? Could snow fall amount change? Lake level change? Could the dispersion of tree species in our region change? Find out: Changes ahead for Great Lakes A new report says global warming could mean big changes for the Great Lakes region. TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Lagging water levels and disappearing pine trees are among possible results of climate change in the Great Lakes region by the end of the century, scientists say. (December 5, 2000) Daily Messenger & The Great Lakes Regional Assessment Team announces the release of their summary report for the Great Lakes region: Preparing for a Changing Climate: The Potential Consequences of Climate variability and Change
12/05/00 -- Here's a message I'm passing on: Please pass on this info for our next New York ReLeaf Conference: Rochester, July 12-14, 2001. Host is Region 8 ReLeaf. The site and theme of the conference will soon be chosen. As usual, low-cost >registration will be the rule and dorm rooms will be available at low cost. Rochester has an outstanding urban forestry program and we look forward to exploring the city and its surroundings as part of the program. For more information, contact Nancy Wolf, Executive Director of the NYS Urban and Community Forestry Council at (718) 834-4589 or via e-mail at email@example.com.
12/04/00 -- Mark your calendar: 1st Technical Advisory Group (TAG) Meeting Scheduled for December 11th Monroe County DOT has posted notice that the first TAG meeting on the proposed Thruway Interchange (46A) in the vicinity of Union St in the Town of Chili is scheduled for Monday, December 11, 2000, 7 pm at the Chili Town Hall, 3333 Chili Ave. At this meeting, they will be reviewing the scope of services for the study, reviewing the ideas, comments or concerns that were identifies at the September 28th Public Input Meeting and soliciting additional thoughts anyone may have. They will also be discussing the composition of the TAG and soliciting suggestions for additional members if necessary. Members of the TAG include representatives from NOEXIT, Smart Growth Coalition, MC Planning Board, MC DOT, NYS Thruway Authority, Federal Highway Administration, NYS DOT, North Road Neighborhood Assn, Churchville-Chili Director of Transportation, 4-Points Rod & Gun Club, County Legislative Reps, Westside Supervisors and Mayors. The meeting is open to the public.
12/04/00 -- I'm passing this online message on: Alzheimer's Registry The Rochester Alzheimer's Association wants everyone suffering from the disease to register with its national database. (December 4, 2000) RNews. Registering for "Safe Return" costs 40 dollars. You can do so by calling 760-5400.
12/03/00 -- If you are a teacher, or know a teacher, in any of Rochester's school, please notice this new environmental program: The UR program for The teacher teams My Environment, My Health, My Choices: Curriculum Development Program -- five next summer and 10 more by 2003 -- will work with UR to develop lesson plans and field work that give students an expanded sense of environmental issues. Sciences to coach teams of teachers from 15 schools over the next seven years. The mission: Combine science, social studies and health lessons into an integrated program of environmental science that goes beyond the ABCs of recycling.
12/02/00 -- New page on Acid Rain. Get all the news, information, and resources on Acid Rain.
12/02/00-- Contact Senator Charles Schumer and thank him for reintroducing the bill on acid rain.
12/02/00 -- Our NYS senator, Sen. Charles Schumer, has reintroduces a bill on Acid Rain, which would have profound implications for our area's environment. Why has our Rochester-area media reported this story: Acid rain bill to get new life Schumer says chances for measure's passage are getting better LAKE PLEASANT -- A federal bill that would mandate deep national cuts in the pollution that causes acid rain will be introduced the first day a new Congress meets next year, Sen. Charles Schumer said Friday. (December 2, 2000) Times Union.
12/02/00 -- The Adirondack Council, meanwhile, unveiled Friday a mini-documentary on acid rain. The roughly 5-minute spot is being made available to public broadcasting stations around the country and can also be viewed on the Web (http://www.broadcastamerica.com).
12/01/00 -- There is a disingenuousness about the arguments that pesticides spokespeople use to stop the Notification Law, that would require anyone applying pesticides to inform their neighbors. We learned yesterday that "Pesticide use in Monroe County is sixth highest among New York's 62 counties, according to a recent report." ---DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE" (For the full report, go to: www.envadvocates.org.) and despite this warning, the lawn chemical companies have come back with this argument: "If we pass the Notification Law in Monroe County, then homeowners, who overuse use herbicides and pesticides, will apply these chemicals themselves and we'll be in a worse situation than before. Lawn experts have to pass test that insure than they only apply he right amount of pesticides and they have to come back and check their work. Also, the Notification Law would put an undue burden on small lawn chemical companies that do not have enough money to hire extra people to go around and knock on door informing people that they are applying dangerous chemicals next door." Well, the problem with this logic (despite the fact that the bottom line in this discussion is that we apply too much pesticides here in Monroe County) is that it ignores a reality of the chemical lawn business. More often than not, lawn companies over-recommend chemicals in treating lawn problems. On my own property, I sought the advice of four separate lawn companies to find out why the grass under my large maple tree was dying. One company said I needed aeration (300), another said fertilizer ($300), another weed control ($300), and the last said grubs ($300). Instead, a friend said that the tree was cutting off the sun to my grass. Get some shade grass seed and it will solve the problem. I did that and my lawn is doing terrific. Organ farmers and others against the overuse and misuse of pesticides will tell that there are many ways of helping your lawn recover without dumping chemicals on it. There is consistent campaign by companies that pollute and poison our environment to frame environmental arguments so that their companies are seen as more important than our very survival. A raging argument now in the courts has a company, which is responsible for the dumping of PCB's in the Hudson River, saying that it is better to leave these extremely dangerous chemicals on the bottom of our river rather than cleaning up the mess. If the public doesn't inform themselves of these environmental issues, they are going to be at the mercy of these disingenuousness arguments by companies whose only interests are in their own survival--not ours.
12/01/00 -- A Living, Breathing Museum A Living, Breathing Museum (a phrase used in City’s Mail last week): Pause and think about this statement, for it is telling. It embodies a severe irony and a profound ignorance surrounding the expansion of the Seneca Park Zoo into Seneca Park. Caging an animal, a lion for example, in a zoo and making it a "living, breathing museum," is not a metaphor—it is a truth, one we had all better face as we undergo the Sixth Great Extinction.
11/30/00 -- This story is not being adequately covered by our Rochester-area media: Environmental Groups Release Report Showing High Pesticide Use in the Greater Rochester Area (Rochester) – Environmental Advocates and the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) today released a report on pesticide use patterns in the Greater Rochester area of Monroe, Wayne, Livingston, Ontario, and Genesee counties during 1998, which reveals that an enormous amount of toxic pesticides are being used in the region on a daily basis. In 1998, 313,000 gallons and 2.2 million pounds of pesticides were reported used by commercial applicators or sold to farmers in the five-county region. (November 9, 2000)Environmental Advocates
11/30/00 -- Major movement in the most popular project in Rochester: Rochester pushes ferry talks City, county and Toronto want to see plans by February -- Rochester and Toronto officials want companies seeking to launch a fast ferry service between the two cities to place all their cards on the table. (November 30, 2000) DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
11/29/00 -- It doesn't get any clearer than this folks: GE asks to nix Superfund law WASHINGTON -- The General Electric Co., confronting hundreds of millions of dollars in cleanup costs for hazardous chemical spills, asked a federal court Tuesday to declare the Superfund toxic waste cleanup law unconstitutional. (November 28, 2000) Poughkeepsie Journal
11/29/00 -- Learn about how Global Warming may be affecting our area by preventing Great Lakes Ice.
11/29/00 -- Do good: Take action against genetically modified foods.
11/28/00 -- While our local media has obsessed about the political voting fight, here's a major story that has escaped us: U.S. industries weigh climate talks outcome CHICAGO, Illinois (Reuters) -- America's smokestack industries, while halfway pleased about the collapse of U.N. climate control talks, realize they are not off the hook for cutting back on the world's worst greenhouse gas emissions. --CNN.com Nature
11/28/00 -- This story doesn't appear locally online, nevertheless it's an important issue: State Cleanup Fund Running Dry -- Rochester Democrat and Chronicle paper version. To find out more and learn how to help go to NY Superfund Faces Shortfall. You can find this story outside of Rochester: Environmentalists protest Superfund expiration Albany-- Groups say lack of extension jeopardizes sites slated for cleanup (November 28, 2000) Times Union. Here's a quote from the article: "The expiration of New York's Superfund is the most critical issue facing the Legislature, state environmental officials said Monday."
11/27/00 -- I can't find this story anywhere in our local media, and yet it could have grave consequences. A bill designed specifically to curb acid rain in New York is being challenged in the courts. Power companies say acid-rain bill unlawful. ALBANY: The Clean Air Markets Group says a bill to fight acid rain is unconstitutional. A coalition of power producers has slapped the Pataki administration with a federal lawsuit, claiming a controversial bill to combat acid rain interferes with interstate commerce and is unconstitutional. (November 27, 2000) TheRecordonLine
11/27/00 -- Here's two ways you can help our community:
11/26/00 -- This is the story of the day and it gets no play in our media. You have to go to the Internet to find out that the US has dropped the ball on the environment and has lost the moral initiative on Global Warming. Outrage Greets U.S.-EU Failure to Cut Climate Deal THE HAGUE - The United States and European Union (news - web sites) faced international outrage on Sunday after triggering the collapse of U.N. climate talks and leaving the fight against global warming in disarray. (November 26, 2000) (Reuters)
11/24/00 -- Not much environmental news to report locally. This is not because there isn't much environmental news, as much as our local media is consumed by the voting problems in the presidential race and not disposed towards the unglamorous reporting of environmental issues. But, if you check the Major Environmental News Sources on the Internet, you'd see that there is a lot going on. Especially important and vital to our future is the climate conference going on at the Hague. This issue, where the United States is not only not taking a leadership role (30% of greenhouse gases are produced in the US) but is actually dragging its feet, will have severe repercussions on our environment. But, there is much more we are missing because our media doesn't believe that the public is much interested in the health of our environment: What will our state and county government do about the spread of the West Nile Virus this spring? What is the status of the proposed NYS Thruway exit at Chili, New York which threaten to profoundly alter the environment of Rochester? What will be the status of the brownfields around Rochester when our state government fails to support the Superfund which will run out of money next year? How much of our Monroe County Parks are going to be used for development and the zoo expansion before we have little left? How far will our State allow the Deer Problem go before it works out a comprehensive solution? Just a thought? What are our communities doing about the Geese Problem and why can't the state come up with a comprehensive plan to deal with these displaced animals due to our Urban Sprawl? Lead Poisoning is one of the biggest environmental problems in our area, what is our government going to be doing about it? All in all, wouldn't it be helpful if our local media had an environmental section that we could check and decide for ourselves if Rochester-area environmental stories are important?
11/21/00 -- Now along with all the Rochester-area environmental news, you can get the environmental headlines from all over the world with the inclusion of two new programs on Rochester's Environmental News. Ecobytes from Enn.com and Environmental news for SiteMeter.com.
11/21/00 -- Catch up on the Climate talks at the Hague here: Europe rejects new U.S. ‘sinks’ idea Delegates have until Friday to agree on Kyoto climate tools-- MSNBC.
11/17/00 -- Although I have heard little about the PCBs in the Hudson River in our local media, this is a major story going on just across the state. (DEC urges action on PCBs -- PostStar.com ) This story has many repercussions in our own environment. It says volumes about how how the media covers environmental matters, how industry treats our environment, how politicians shy away (Did Bush say we can trust industry to care about our environment?) from sensitive environmental issues, and how the public ignores environmental problems until they get in our face. Our media helps us create the illusion that environmental problems are only the special interest of only an obsessed few. We have our own polluted river, but it flows on toxically invisibly to all.
11/16/00 -- Today is the Great American Smoke Out. Quit the habit.
11/16/00 -- Check out this amazing research online tool we have for the Rochester area. ROARing Cat helps you find the library materials you need, no matter where they are located in the hundreds of libraries in the Rochester, New York region.
11/15/00 -- Henrietta Neighbors United has posted TOWN OF HENRIETTA 1997 COMPREHENSIVE LAND USE PLAN on it's web site.
11/15/00 -- I must commend the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle for its article on those who oppose the expansion of the Seneca Park Zoo. This article presents a balanced look at the other side of this important Rochester-area environmental issue. People for the parks Citizens groups seek greater role in the Monroe County parks system -- Jocelyn Janaitis stood before the Monroe County Legislature last month with about 1,400 names on petitions opposing the proposed expansion of the Seneca Park Zoo. (November 15, 2000) DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
11/14/00 -- Coming soon: Downtown Community forum and schedule is coming http://www.dcfrochester.org/ Get the dates and times for many useful community programs now on the Internet when this site gets going.
11/14/00 -- Tomorrow, Nov. 15, is America Recycles Day: Find out more from to the Official Web Site of America Recycles Day!
11/14/00 -- Given the bad choices being made about urban sprawl in our area, this news items is especially poignant: N.Y. counties rapped for their use of tobacco payments -- New York's counties are blowing a chance to use money from the national tobacco settlement to reduce smoking, the state American Lung Association charged on Monday. (November 14, 2000) DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
11/14/00 -- Now, here's a timely event: AN
ELECTION ANALYSIS, by John Stouffer, Sierra Club's Albany
political expert. John will speak and answer questions for Sierra Club
members on: "THE ELECTION- DID WE WIN?" Thursday, November 16th,
7:30pmat Rochester Friends Meeting House 84 Scio St. (on block north East
Ave & behind Eastman Theater) Are we psychic? We invited our New York
State political expert to come give us an election analysis back in
September! With the current frenzy over WHO WON John should be able to
help us cut through the fuzz to the important environmental questions
underneath. For example: QUESTION: If Bush wins is the Arctic Wildlife
Refuge lost to Big Oil? We've fought long and hard to save this World
Heritage wildlife refuge from industrial exploitation! What can
Sierra Club do now to save it? This program is free and open to the public.
11/09/00 -- Here's yet another major story that concerns our environment that I cannot find in any of our local news media. Environmental Groups Release Report Showing Alarmingly High Pesticide Use in New York State (Albany) – Environmental Advocates and the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) today released a 44-page report, The Toxic Treadmill: Pesticide Use and Sales in New York State 1997-1998, which reveals that an enormous amount of toxic pesticides are being used in New York State on a daily basis. (November 9, 2000) Environmental Advocates New York Public Interest Research Group
11/08/00 -- Is our Clean Air Act about to be compromised? Supreme Court weighs power of the EPA While Americans went to the polls today, the Supreme Court heard extended argument on the power of the Environmental Protection Agency to set clean air standards.--Enn.com Find out more: Congressional Research Service, Report for Congress, IB10004: Clean Air Act Issues in the 106th Congress.
11/07/00 -- New York just passed tougher smog emission standards for vehicles. Find out more from EPA's program from here: National Low Emission Vehicle Program and Ozone Transport Commission (OTC) LEV
11/06/00 -- Big news. Almost all the online Rochester-area news services are reporting the release of seven River Otters in Honeoye. I guess it's true that people love environmental news when it's about warm and fuzzies. I think the River Otter restoration is a great project, but I wish our local media warm report all the environmental news of our area, not just when it's cute news.
11/06/00 -- RochesterEnvironment.com has a new feature on Rochester News Now you can get environmental news for Rochester and all the rest of the environmental news from ENN.com--one of the best and most comprehensive environmental news sites on the web. EcoBytes is a live environmental news box that is updated daily by ENN.
11/05/00 -- Find out what you know and don't know about preparing your home for winter. Take ENN's winter energy conservation quiz. Source: Environmental News Network http://enn.com/features/2000/11/11032000/winterenergy_39753.asp
11/05/00 -- Here's a great way to help the environment, by the National Wildlife Federation's Backyard Wildlife Program. Starting a Backyard Wildlife Habitat project is not difficult. Just follow these steps! Assess your yard or garden space. The first thing you need to do is identify the habitat elements that already exist in your yard or garden space. You may already be providing some habitat for wildlife! Provide the four basic elements. All species have four basic requirements for survival. These are Food, Water, Cover, and Places to Raise Young. Practice resource conservation in your own backyard. Conserving resources will not only help the wildlife in your own yard but will help improve your community’s environment. Certify your backyard. Details on how and why you should become certified in the National Wildlife Federation’s Backyard Wildlife Habitat program. Also, check out Schoolyard Habitats.
11/04/00 -- A must read for Rochester-area. This is a two-part article on West Nile Virus from Rachel.org:
|#709 - West Nile Virus -- Part 1, 10-12-00|
|#710 - West Nile Virus -- Part 2, 10-26-00|
11/04/00 -- What does the public think of Urban Sprawl? Find out "Looking at increased traffic, a longer commute and struggling communities, Americans think smart growth measures are the way to go according to a national poll. The poll, commissioned by the Smart Growth America coalition, found that 78 percent of Americans support policies to curb sprawl, which is characterized as poorly planned development that destroys green spaces, puts a strain on a community's social services and increases traffic and taxes."
11/03/00 -- RochesterEnvironment.com has a
Events Calendar. Because of consistent difficulties with the
last service, I've decided to go with a new calendar program. You can
still add your environmental events and remember to check each day to find
out what's happening on Rochester's Environmental front: http://metaevents.com/RECalendar/calendrome.cgi
11/03/00 -- Major environmental story for our area,
about curbing toxic releases into the Great Lakes, and little mention of
it in our local news papers.
HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF POUNDS OF TOXICS FROM THE
GREAT LAKES -- EPA Region Two.
11/01/00 -- Write a letter or send and e-mail to your elected representatives clearly stating your views about the proposed Seneca Park Zoo Expansion into Seneca Park. The issue will not come to a vote in the Monroe County Legislature until Spring of 2001.