Action - Rochester, NY area Environment
Take Action for your area's environment. These actions come for non-profit and governmental (many in the form of public input forums) on issues that will affect our particular environment.
Often, I receive request to pass on alerts, petitions, Public Comments on local developments, and environmental items needing action by the Rochester Community and around the world.
This page is designed to bring all these requests under one roof so the Internet can facilitate these requests by various groups for aid. Look for the due date for each of the action items. I try as much as possible (because there are so many environmental online actions) to limit my listings to items that will influence the Rochester, NY area
Top Ten Things You Can Do for
’s Environment Rochester
Sure there are lots of top ten lists around. So why not one on the things you can do for your local environment—that system that keeps us alive and thriving? But, this list is different from the usual stuff. It’s not one of those really easy, warm and fuzzy lists of fun activities you can do in your spare time. It’ll be transformative.
This list assumes you are ready to take responsibility (as a member of the only species capable of doing so) for your presence at this critical time in our planet’s history. And, it isn’t about just your personal fulfillment thing—our environment isn’t politics, religion, a fad, or a cause; it’s science all the way down. Pollute the planet, stuff happens. Finally, in order for the effects of this list to be effective a lot (I mean billions) of humans need to do them too. In the deepest practical sense, everything you do (where you live, what you eat, what you buy, what you throw away) matters to our environment. Ready folks, here we go:
- Be engaged with the issues surrounding our local environment by monitoring the media, books, reports, and the Internet using the laws of Nature as your guide to monitor how our lifestyle is affecting our environment.
- When you consume anything--food, water, cars, gadgets, whatever—do so as though you were demonstrating how to consume for the rest of the world—considering the lifecycle of the products you buy, how they are made, how they are used, and how you get rid of them.
- When you have someplace to go, consider
all your options in order of their affect on our environment:
walking, biking, car-pooling, mass transit, and lastly a
- Conserve energy until we find a non-polluting, renewable energy source.
- Vote. If you’re doing good for our environment and your representative in government doesn’t get it, you’re just making yourself feel good without much effect.
- Recycle, reuse and encourage your local government to create a place where recycling just about everything is the norm.
- Think twice before using toxic chemicals that make your yard look like a golf course and your house like a hospital.
- Consider other species (plants and animals) and their role in sustaining our environment. Some are annoying and critical. Some are cute and a burden.
- Adopt green business practices: your business will save our environment and be able to compete with the rest of the world.
- Communicate your concerns about the state of our environment to everyone. Sustainability isn’t going to work unless everyone gets on board quickly.
- Encourage all your news sources to have an environmental section daily and help move environmental investigations and news to mainstream media.
Rochesterians Concerned About Unsafe Shale-gas Extraction R-CAUSE was created by Rochester citizens who treasure New York State and want its waters, land and air to remain clean and its communities to remain viable. R-CAUSE's goal is to inform as many people in the Rochester area as possible about the risks associated with high-volume, slick-water, horizontal hydraulic fracturing.
[Actions with specific dates are listed first, then actions due now (and without specific dates are listed after.]
ACTION: Due Date:
September 21, 2014
- Got a nomination for an environmental leader in our Rochester, NY region? Nominate here: 2014 Community Salute to the Environment "The Center for Environmental Initiatives (CEI) plans to present several Environmental Excellence Awards at its 40th Annual Community Salute to the Environment on September 30, 2014. Please help us recognize our region’s environmental leaders by making a nomination now. The process is easy, just use the forms provided on our website. Nominations have been extended to September 1, 2014, so please do not delay. See our website for more information about the Community Salute including registration and sponsorship opportunities. This year's featured topic: The Genesee River - Its Past, Present and Future. "--from The Center for Environmental Initiatives
ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Please make comment on a Strategic Plan for Transportation in the Genesee-Finger Lakes Region through 2040. Transportation issues are strongly related to Climate Change because our transportation infrastructure (roads and bridges) is extremely vulnerable to extreme weather—heat, flooding, and very expensive to repair. Most of your transportation dollars ($15 billion annually in New York State) go to keeping this vast system in repair, and now it must do so in a time of warming. If the public doesn’t urge our transportation authorities to strongly make our system more robust and resilient, and provide more and more access to alternative transportation (bicycling and walking) in a time of increased extreme weather, the transportation system as a whole might be in jeopardy. We have many bridges and roads and disrepair already and much will have to be done at a high cost to ready the transportation system to Climate Change. More folks walking and bicycling would reduce the amount of infrastructure wear (after they are built) more safety, and a lot less greenhouse gas emissions. Without public support for this increase attention to our transportation infrastructure it may compromise our most robust and viable adaptation efforts in our region. All climate studies in this region call for major updating and repair of our transportation infrastructures. Transportation Survey: Genesee Transportation Council wants your input Work is underway for develop strategies that will guide investments in transportation for the NEXT 25 YEARS – a Strategic Plan for Transportation in the Genesee-Finger Lakes Region through 2040. You can help by 1. Taking a Brief 5 Minute Survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/GTC-LRTP-2040. 2. Go to the Public Input Map at http://wikimapping.com/wikimap/gtc-lrtp-2040/p-71950 and add any comments you have/show what projects you feel would be beneficial.
ACTION: Due date: August 21st
- Help Governor Cuomo work up the nerve to say NO! to the Fracking industry—August 21st. "Buffalo & Rochester Carpool to the rally to BAN FRACKING outside Governor Cuomo's appearance at the NYS Fair Every year, Governor Cuomo attends the first day of the great New York State Fair in Syracuse, NY and every year we rally outside his appearance to make our voices heard. Join us on Thursday, August 21st as we carpool to rally outside of the NY State Fair with hundreds of New Yorkers against fracking from across the state. During Governor Cuomo's visit, we'll stand together to demand that he say "no" to fracking and "yes" to a renewable energy economy that protects our most vital resources, public health, and agriculture. The Fair is a prime opportunity to send a message to Governor Cuomo that the movement calling for a statewide ban on fracking is strong and growing. (We encourage everyone to also enjoy and support the NYS Fair while we’re there. It’s a wonderful event with many great vendors from across the state.) All carpools will be leaving together as a caravan from the pick-up locations during the scheduled time. Thursday, August 21st Leave/return to Buffalo: 8:15 a.m./5:15 p.m. Leave/return to Rochester: 9:45 a.m./3:45 p.m. If you need a ride in the carpool -OR- can offer to host a carpool, fill out this form & we will be in touch: http://bit.ly/1lXWKxr
- ACTION: Due Date: From July 24 -
- Pool Owners Sought to Participate in Citizen Science Survey to Identify Invasive Insects Monitoring Pool Filters for Asian Longhorned Beetles Can Prevent Infestation and Help Protect Trees and Forests Pool owners are invited to join in the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) third annual Asian longhorned beetle (ALB) Swimming Pool Survey now through August 29 in order to help keep watch for these exotic, invasive beetles before they cause serious damage to our forests and street trees. The Citizen Pool Survey takes place this time of year when ALBs are expected to become adults, emerge from the trees they are infesting and become active outside those trees. Earlier this month, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo issued a proclamation designating New York's first ever Invasive Species Awareness Week to educate New Yorkers on the ALB and other invasive species that can be harmful to human health, animal habitat, agriculture and tourism. The Swimming Pool Survey continues those education efforts and allows residents to actively engage in the efforts to stop the spread of ALB. (July 24, 2014) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC)
- ACTION: Due Date: August 29, 2014
- Even if you don’t care about this ugly little bat, you might want to save it so we don’t have to fill our environment with pesticides to compensate its loss. The Northern Long-Eared Bat is one of those little creatures whose existence in and of itself may not mean much to you, but you might care about some of the ‘environmental services’ it provides because we may have to make up for that by dumping tons of Pesticides into our environment (our life support system) as Climate Change brings in more bug pests. So, if that seems like it might be something important to you, you have until August 29, 2014 to comment here or by mail. Service Reopens Comment Period on Proposal to List the Northern Long-eared Bat as an Endangered Species The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has reopened the comment period for 60 days, through August 29, 2014, on a proposal to list the northern long-eared bat as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Service has also extended the agency’s deadline to April 2, 2015, to make its final decision on whether to list the species. The Service proposed to list the bat as endangered on October 2, 2013, citing white-nose syndrome, a disease that has killed millions of bats, as the greatest threat to the species. During the reopened comment period, the Service seeks information regarding the interpretation of scientific studies cited in the proposed rule, along with any additional scientific information not already considered in the proposal. (June 30, 2014) US Fish and Wildlife Service [more on Wildlife in our area]
ACTION: Due Date: September 2, 2014
- "A draft hazardous waste management permit for Kodak and Recycled Energy Development (RED) is available for public review and comment through Sept. 2, the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today." DEC Announces Proposed Renewal of Hazardous Waste Management Permit for Eastman Kodak Company and Recycled Energy Development DEC Accepting Public Comments on the Draft Permit Through Sept. 2 A draft hazardous waste management permit for Kodak and Recycled Energy Development (RED) is available for public review and comment through Sept. 2, the State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) announced today. Eastman Business Park (EBP), located in the city of Rochester and town of Greece, currently has two hazardous waste management operations: a multiple hearth incinerator (MHI) used to incinerate sludge from the Kings Landing Wastewater Treatment Plant, and a tank system at Building 322 for hazardous waste storage. The draft permit and related documents for Eastman Business Park (Kodak) are available for public review and comment on DEC's website. DEC will carefully consider all comments received before making a final determination on the permit. In 2013, DEC modified the existing hazardous waste management permit to add RED as an operator after the company acquired a number of utilities from Kodak, including the MHI. Kodak and RED filed an amended application for renewal of the permit in 2013. (July 2, 2014) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC)
- ACTION: Due Date Sept
- Don’t forget; Sept 20-21 for People’s Climate March @ New York City. Sign up now – or read Bill McKibben’s more formal invitation in Rolling Stone here.
ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Interested in the water quality of our rivers and streams and want to get trained to help monitor them? "Reminder -- Volunteers for Stream and River Monitoring Wanted: DEC is looking for citizen scientist volunteers for stream and river monitoring as part of the Water Assessments by Volunteer Evaluators (WAVE) project. Volunteers visit stream sites once between July and September to collect macroinvertebrates -- insects and other small organisms -- from the rocks and rubble on the stream bottom. In 2014, volunteers can participate by joining a local WAVE group led by a trained local coordinator, or by sampling independently. Volunteers working under a trained local coordinator do not need to attend a training session; however, volunteers who want to work independently must attend a training session. WAVE training sessions rotate around the state on a five-year schedule, targeting those basins that will be sampled by DEC's Stream Biomonitoring Unit the following year. Three training sessions remain for 2014: June 14 in Esperance, June 21 in Wyoming and June 29 in New Hartford. " (June 13, 2014) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC)
ACTION: Due Date: Now:
- Give Feedback to open.ny.gov! Back in March of 2013, Governor Cuomo Launches Open.NY.Gov Providing Public Unprecedented User-Friendly Access to Federal, State and Local Data “Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today launched "open.ny.gov," a new and comprehensive state data transparency website that provides - for the first time - user-friendly, one-stop access to data from New York State agencies, localities, and the federal government. The website, featuring economic development, health, recreation, and public services information, was unveiled today during Sunshine Week, a nationwide initiative designed to raise awareness about the importance of open government.” open.ny.gov is now up and running and filled with a lot of data, most of not really helpful in learning about the state of our environment. This data site is a good start, but it could use some more datasets focused on information we need to monitor the health of our New York State environment—especially as Climate Change affects our state. Consider giving open.ny.gov suggestions on new datasets, like Brownfield sites that need cleaning up, what kind of toxins are still the in Genesee River, where are all the landfills, what routes to hazardous materials take through our state, in what areas are folks getting cancer and what kind of cancers, and a lot more. Give Feedback to open.ny.gov!
ACTION: Due Date: Now.
- Chance to volunteer and help largest wetland in Northeast. "Montezuma Audubon Center Seeks Volunteers Savannah, NY - September 20 - The Montezuma Audubon Center (MAC), located at 2295 State Route 89 in Savannah, is seeking volunteers to strengthen the current staff’s ability to fulfill Audubon’s mission in conservation. The MAC is dedicated toward providing opportunities for youth, families, and communities to connect to conservation and enhance the Montezuma Wetlands Complex as an Important Bird Area. We are looking for volunteers interested in routinely supporting day to day needs as an information desk receptionist, animal caretaker for our live reptiles and amphibians, and office supporter to help with clerical tasks. Please call Chris Lajewski at 315-365-3588 or e-mail email@example.com for more information or to sign up today! "
ACTION: Due Date: Now
- New website by Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) to demand clean energy and do away with dirty energy to prevent more Climate Change. "Tell President Obama to reject the climate-destroying, Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and lead the way to a clean energy future instead. " DemandCleanPower.org
- ACTION : Due Date Now:
- Join the New York Water Sentinels stream team! Training provided periodically. Sentinels test and document stream quality now, so future effects from gas drilling are more easily identified. Water Sentinels has trained over 100 citizens to use simple scientific methods to evaluate stream quality. With stream information (such as stream depth and conductivity), we can help regulators recognize trends and address problems. For more information: NYWaterSentinels@gmail.com | or FaceBook
Due Date: Now
- Thinking it’s about time to do something on a big scale to combat Climate Change? Think about joining Citizen’s Climate Lobby. Here’s what Dr. James Hansen, head of Goddard Institute for Space Studies, NASA say’s "Most impressive is the work of Citizens Climate Lobby, a relatively new, fastgrowing, nonpartisan, nonprofit group with 60 chapters across the United States and Canada. If you want to join the fight to save the planet, to save creation for your grandchildren, there is no more effective step you could take than becoming an active member of this group." The contact information for the local Rochester group: firstname.lastname@example.org We meet monthly, and people can contact us for more info on getting involved!
- ACTION: Due Date Now
- Don’t need those massive phone books? Just throw them away because you’re a digital kind of person? Opt out of getting those phone books, easy peasy, and save trees . Phone Book Opt-Out Program Gives Choice to Consumers Did you know you can control how many phone books you get every year, or whether you get one at all? In the age of smart phones and Wi-Fi, the way people search for information is changing. For many, online search options are the new go-to for finding contact information to local residences or businesses. That means when a printed phone book arrives on your doorstep, it might go to waste. Find your local recycle solution for Phone Books So why do phone books continue to show up? According to the Local Search Association, 70 percent of consumers still prefer to receive a printed phone book every year. (November 20, 2012) Earth 911 [more on Recycling in our area]
ACTION: Due Date: Now!
- Can you imagine what our world would look like if everyone used their smartphones to report environmental crimes? Healthier! Become an environmental crime stopper Polluting a stream and getting away with it? Violating the Clean Air Act without detection? Now, anyone with a smartphone can help bust abusers of the environment. New York State Crime Stoppers announced a new phone app that makes it very easy for people to instantly report environmental crimes to the appropriate agency. Cellfare created the app in collaboration with Crime Stoppers, Waterkeeper Alliance, state police and local law enforcement agencies across the state. (November 21, 2012) Investigative Post
ACTION: Due Date: Now
- As Climate Change increase the changes of combined sewer overflows due to increase frequency of heavy rain fall in the spring, this issue will become more critical. We must plan for this and it will be expensive, but more so if we wait. Take action here: Help Keep Sewage Out of the Great Lakes Billions of gallons of combined raw sewage and storm runoff are dumped into the Great Lakes each year. Raw sewage, trash and personal hygiene products — along with industrial wastewater, household chemicals, urban runoff, herbicides and pesticides — often flow into the lakes after heavy rains. Urge Congress and the president to support sustained and increased investment in the Clean Water State Revolving Fund. Help keep untreated sewage out of the Great Lakes! --from Alliance for the Great Lakes
ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Sign this online petition against Fracking in Monroe County: Prohibit All Fracking Related Activities on Monroe County Properties, NY Last Tuesday, over 4, 000 petition signatures to ban all Fracking and related activities were delivered to Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks and members of the Monroe County Legislature. But presumably that wasn’t enough because the press didn’t even show up. Here’s the news that the local news media couldn’t bother themselves to print: Thousands Sign Petition to Ban Fracking and Related Activities On Monroe County Properties. Don't let New York State become a Resource Curse. It would be great if we could march into the Monroe County Legislature next time and fork over 20,000 signatures. Maybe that will wake our local government up to the fact that Fracking must be stopped here and in New York State. Find out more about this petition and download hard copies for your church group or other organization here. Numbers count. Don't be sorry after the fact, act now.
- ACTION: Due Date:
- Tired of meteorologists failing to connect the dots between Climate Change and our daily weather? Do something about it. Take action: Forecast the Facts WE NEED OUR TV METEOROLOGISTS TO REPORT THE FACTS ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE. According to a recent national survey, more than half of TV weather reporters don’t believe in human-induced climate change. Meanwhile, their viewers are facing unprecedented climate-change induced heat waves, droughts, and flooding.
We Can Solve It The We Campaign is a project of The Alliance for Climate Protection -- a nonprofit, nonpartisan effort founded by Nobel laureate and former Vice President Al Gore. The goal of the Alliance is to build a movement that creates the political will to solve the climate crisis -- in part through repowering America with 100 percent of its electricity from clean energy sources within 10 years. Our economy, national security, and climate can’t afford to wait.
Many local, national, and international organizations take action for our environment and make it easy for you to do so also.
- Citizen Science: Wildlife Observation Data Collection Many people enjoy observing wildlife in many different ways. Occasionally there are opportunities for you to help the Bureau of Wildlife collect valuable data. In some cases this may require special effort but, in many cases all that is required is recording what you see while bird watching, hunting, hiking, scouting, etc. See the links below and in the right hand columm of this page for current volunteer opportunities and results of past efforts. NYS Dept. of Envornmental Conservation
- How you can help monitor our local environment: Help Lab Researchers Develop The YardMap Network! — eBird "At eBird we love when birders submit data from their backyards. Your backyard can provide excellent habitat for birds, and when many backyards are put together, an growing network of green space becomes available for birds. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is developing a new project called the YardMap Network, which will allow you to describe in great detail the habitat and conservation practices happening in your backyard. Please take 15 minutes to tell us what you think about the YardMap Network by taking this survey. Your input will be valuable for developing the project, and will help ensure that we can learn more about how birds are using your yard! "
- Union of Concerned Scientists The Union of Concerned Scientists is the leading science-based nonprofit working for a healthy environment and a safer world. UCS combines independent scientific research and citizen action to develop innovative, practical solutions and to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices. Action Center | Union of Concerned Scientists
- OMB Watch | Promoting open government, accountability, and citizen participation since 1983 OMB Watch exists to increase government transparency and accountability; to ensure sound, equitable regulatory and budgetary processes and policies; and to protect and promote active citizen participation in our democracy.
- 350.org 350.org is an international campaign dedicated to building a movement to unite the world around solutions to the climate crisis--the solutions that science and justice demand. Our mission is to inspire the world to rise to the challenge of the climate crisis—to create a new sense of urgency and of possibility for our planet.
- Regulations.gov Regulations.gov is your online source for U.S. government regulations from nearly 300 federal agencies. Regulations.gov is your source for U.S. government regulations and related documents. On this site you can find, read and comment on documents. Share your knowledge and make your voice count.
- Citizens Campaign for the Environment ACTION ALERTS -from CCE - Water Protection Public Health Energy Renewable Policy Toxic Wildlife Chemical Contamination Subscribe Newsletter Jobs Calendar Pollution Air Quality Advocacy Farmingdale White Plains Albany Syracuse Buffalo
League of Women Voters Rochester Metropolitan Area "The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy."
- Espeically useful is the LWV's yearly "A Guide to Your Elected Offi cials for Monroe County 2009 "
Report an Environmental Violation Online "Report an Environmental Violation Online The New York State Environmental Conservation Police values the watchful eyes and ears of citizens concerned with our environment. Use this form to report suspected violations of New York State environmental conservation laws. Submitted forms are immediately forwarded 24/7/365 to DEC dispatchers. If an immediate response is needed, file your complaint by phone by calling the DEC Turn in Poachers and Polluters (TIPP) hotline at 1-800-TIPP-DEC (1-800-847-7332). Caution: never put yourself at risk to get any of the information. Gather whatever information you can without trespassing or exposing yourself to harmful materials or situations. " from New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
Contact Your New York State (Senator) and (Assembly) Representatives--from http://newyork.sierraclub.org/legislative/
You'd be surprised how influential a letter or phone call from a constituent can be to a State Senator or State Assembly Member.
- To find your State Senator's Contact Information: Go to http://www.senate.state.ny.us, click on "Senators", click on your Senator, click on "contact." To identify your State Senator: Go to http://www.senate.state.ny.us, click on "Senators", click on "search by zip code", enter your zip code.
- To find your Assembly Member's Contact Information: Go to http://www.assembly.state.ny.us, scroll to your Assembly Member, click "go", click on "contact". To identify your Assembly Member: Go to http://www.assembly.state.ny.us, click to "click here to search by zipcode", enter your zipcode, and click "search".
Need help choosing an environmentally friendly elected official? NYLCV - New York League of Conservation Voters | Educating and Electing for the Environment - NYLCV is a non-partisan, policy making and political action organization that works to make environmental protection a top priority with elected officials, decision-makers and the voters by evaluating incumbent performance and endorsing and electing environmental leaders to office in New York State.
100 Months: Technical note "We calculate that 100 months from 1 August 2008, atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases will begin to exceed a point whereby it is no longer likely we will be able to avert potentially irreversible climate change. 'Likely' in this context refers to the definition of risk used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) to mean that, at that particular level of greenhouse gas concentration, there is only a 66 - 90 per cent chance of global average surface temperatures stabilising at 2º Celsius above pre-industrial levels.1 Once this concentration is exceeded, it becomes more and more likely that we will overshoot a 2º C level of warming. This is the maximum acceptable level of temperature rise agreed by the European Union and others as necessary to retain reasonable confidence of preventing uncontrollable and ultimately catastrophic warming. We also believe this calculation to be conservative. "