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“Our Environment is changing: Keep up with the Change.”
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[07/08/2012 – 07/15/2012]
Opening Salvo: “Mosquitoes and dragging our feet on Climate Change”
Here in New York State, Climate Change is not expected to affect the net amount of rainfall we get in the next half-century. Mosquitoes that drive vector-borne diseases like Lyme disease, malaria, and West Nile Virus will probably increase.
Vulnerabilities related to climate change also include illness and death associated with ozone and fine-particle air pollution, asthma and other respiratory diseases including allergies associated with altered pollen and mold seasons, cardiovascular disease, and infectious diseases. Climate plays a strong role in the emergence and/or changing distributions of vector-borne diseases, such as those spread by mosquitoes and ticks. (Page 11, ClimateAID: ntegrated Assessment for Effective Climate Change Adaptation Strategies in New York State)
We will have more rainfall in the early spring and late fall according to many Climate Studies that address our region, but even in our drier summers and early fall; man-made pooling of waters will allow the mosquito populations grow.
Mosquito Population will Increase with Climate Change say University of Arizona Researchers “In general, higher temperatures will facilitate an increase in mosquito population during the spring and fall seasons, while higher temperatures in the summer will decrease breeding habitats due to a drier environment.” (June 13, 2011) National Science Foundation
So it makes sense for communities and governments to design programs to anticipate this increased threat and protect the public from one of these environmental health consequences of Climate Change in our region. But not much is happening on that front.
What worries me is that there will be a knee-jerk reaction to this real concern by increasing the use of pesticides to solve this problem as our region warms up. There are many other ways to curb mosquitoes’ proliferation than mass pesticide spraying, like monitoring places where water pools up in old tires and this advice from the NYS Department of Health:
The NYS Health Department recommends New Yorkers take the following precautions to eliminate mosquito breeding areas around the home: (from State Health Department Urges New Yorkers to Take Precautions to Protect Themselves from Potential Exposure to West Nile Virus (2005)
· Dispose of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots and similar water-holding containers.
· Remove all discarded tires on your property. Used tires have become one the most common mosquito breeding grounds.
· Drill holes in the bottom of recycling containers that are kept outdoors.
· Make sure gutters drain properly, and clean clogged gutters in the spring and fall.
· Turn over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use.
· Change the water in bird baths.
· Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs.
· Drain water from pool covers.
· Use landscaping to eliminate stagnant water that collects on your property; clean up leaf litter and similar organic debris.
· Make sure that all doors and windows have screens and that the screens are in good repair.
This issue highlights why it is important to address Climate Change issues earlier rather than later. Ignoring immediate mass efforts, like reducing misquote populations as our regions warms with non-poisonous methods, will insure that we will have to resort to mass pesticide spraying later on. Then, we’ll have two major problems instead of one: more vector-borne disease and more contamination due to the use and potential over-use of pesticide toxins in our air, water, and ground.
This is the way it’s going to be in our warmer future: Not just one of the consequences due to Climate Change are likely to hit our children at any one time, many things will more likely happen at once. Like Hurricane Katrina, where the levees, the communication systems, transportation systems, fresh waster infrastructure, and disaster aid all failed at once. Those thinking that when the misquotes increase because they can survive longer in the wet hotter weather in early spring we’ll just spray chemicals on them haven’t a clue as to what Climate Change means.
BTW: As long as we are talking about the New York State Health department and Climate Change—what’s going on? It seems the health department stopped talking about Climate Change back in 2008: State Health Commissioner Addresses Public Health Effects of Climate Change with County Environmental Health Directors Statewide as the above notes the latest to come up when you search their site for ‘climate change.’ That’s not all. The department of health for our state is taking the same tack about informing the public on the heatwave and Climate Change as local media: They are talking about how bad it is and what you should do to protect yourself in a major heatwave, but they aren’t connecting the dots with Climate Change: State Health Department, Office of Emergency Management Advise New Yorkers to Protect Themselves Against Excessive Heat. Nary a word about what is to come.
That’s startling because it is the NYS Dept. of Health that should be help preparing us for public health issues as they relate to Climate Change. But they’ve gone dark on the issue. Not only are more folks going to need more information on how to prepare for heatwaves and vector-borne diseases as our region’s climate changes, but the state and municipalities like Rochester, NY are going to have to long-term plan for these health issues. It gets very complicated and we’re going to need the power and authority of the NYS Health Department to get with it. Warmer weather creates warmer water, which creates more blue algae blooms, and more bacteria in the water, and the last thing we should be doing is waiting until the last minute to address these things because if we do that we’re going to have to rely on doing crazy things—like massive pesticide spraying and geoengineering the planet.
Few things humans have conceived of are more absurd than thinking we’ll just wait until Climate Change gets really bad then super-tech our way out it.
FrankRegan@RochesterEnvironment.com (Click on my email for feedback)
* Got news? | Go to my blog: Environmental Thoughts - Rochester, NY or Tweet me @ http://twitter.com/#!/FrankRrrr On Twitter and Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/RochesterEnvironment and Examiner/RochesterEnvironment, I post local environmental events, news, and commentary as soon as it happens. If you think this newsletter, which continually informs our community on our local environmental news, events, actions, is worthwhile, please encourage others to sign up. We who care about our environment and future need to ‘Occupy’ the Rochester media to change how the public views environmental news.
The great conundrum of our times is that in a time of rapidly occurring Climate Change and a rapid disintegration of the environment that we need to thrive and survive, mainstream media still marginalizes environmental concerns. [Check often for this continually updated list on the possible consequences of Climate Change in our region--supported by facts.] If there isn’t a quick and substantial change in how environmental concerns are reported, edited, and chosen in mainstream media, the public will continue to believe that environmental concerns are merely special interest matters, issues they can avoid if they choose. How can we inform the public and monitor our environment without abridging our Freedoms--in enough time to safe ourselves?
Anything else you're interested in is not going to happen if you can't breathe the air and drink the water. Don't sit this one out. Do something. You are by accident of fate alive at an absolutely critical moment in the history of our planet. -- Carl Sagan
- Resolutions supporting DEC's fracking decision spread | Innovation Trail
- U.S. Ranks Ninth Out of 12 Countries in Energy Efficiency | InsideClimate News The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy
- Europe's New CO2 Emission Targets 'Toughest in the World'
- New alarm sounded about Asian carp threat to Great Lakes - Washington - The Buffalo News
- Drought hangs us out to dry - Weather - The Buffalo News
- Drought leads to declaration of natural disaster in 26 US states | Environment | guardian.co.uk
- BREAKING: Spiny water flea set to infest Lake Champlain « The In Box
- Cornell’s ‘sustainable’ seafood an Ivy League first - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow
- Two Rochester-area sites added to Superfund cleanup list | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com City of Rochester | News Release - Mayor Thomas S. Richards Declares Heat Emergency Friday
- Board Meeting Gives Avon Residents Chance to Discuss Fracking Moratorium
- Warmest Half Year On Record For U.S. Mainland, NOAA 'State Of The Climate' Reports
- The Natural Gas Boom: Doing More Harm Than Good? : NPR
- Cornell Chronicle: Summer starts out sizzling
- NCPR News - DEC warns of high fire danger in Adirondacks and surrounding
- DEC Adopts Changes for State Deer Hunting Regulations - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation
- Cuomo announces Erie Canalway Trail expansion | NY Daily Record
- DEC to hold open house on state forest plan - Utica, NY - The Observer-Dispatch, Utica, New York
- Voyage studying plastic in Great Lakes sets sail | Innovation Trail
- Ontario unveils plan to combat invasive species | www.citizen.on.ca | Orangeville Citizen
- Heidi Cullen Tackles Climate Extremes on ABC News | Climate Central
- Cornell Chronicle: Program fosters environmental ethics
- Local Gas Company Shuts Down Avon Wells - Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events - 13WHAM.com
- New Reports Show Impact of Manmade Global Warming | Climate Central
- NCPR News - Governor Cuomo offers limited support for hydrofracking in NY statae
- NCPR News - No rush for DEC fracking rules
- NCPR News - Massena pellet mill at the forefront of renewable energy industry
- Scientists attribute extreme weather to man-made climate change | Environment | guardian.co.uk
- Past 12 months warmest ever recorded in United States - CNN.com
- Fracking moratorium in Avon prompts gas company to shut wells - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow
- Sean Lahman: Sunny days for solar company | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com
- G. Schneiderman Acts To Ensure Assessment Of Dangers Of Long-term Nuclear Waste Storage At Indian Point Precedes Any Relicensing Decision | Eric T. Schneiderman
- Invasive plants, fish threaten Great Lakes region
- New Study: Fluids From Marcellus Shale Likely Seeping Into PA Drinking Water - ProPublica
- Rising Shale Water Complicates Fracking Debate : NPR
- Ag plastics recycling options featured at Empire Farm Days
- City of Canandaigua passes 12-month ban on fracking
- Schumer: Fast track fight against armyworms - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow
- Property owners, town need new gas supply after anti-fracking law shutters pipeline | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com
- Rochester weather off to hottest start since 1872 | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com
- A Rochester Bicycling Program Aims to Increase Healthy Living | WXXI News
- Drilling for Natural Gas Under Cemeteries Raises Concerns - NYTimes.com
- Vestal, other municipalities feeling heat over gas drilling | Press & Sun-Bulletin | pressconnects.com
- 2012 Heat Wave is Historic, if not Unprecedented | Climate Central
- UPDATE 1-Dry skies threaten US corn crop as heat wave breaks | Reuters
- NCPR News - Cape Vincent mulls new rules governing wind development
Updates – Daily Updates – [Connecting the dots on Rochester’s environment. Find out what’s going on environmentally in our area—and why you should care? Clicking on -DISCUSSION – will take you to my blog “Environmental Thoughts, NY, where you can add your comments.]
- 7/14/2012 - Allowing NYS to undermine Home Rule on Fracking is the camel’s nose in the tent – say goodbye to citizen’s power to determine their own fate and hello to corporate greed: Resolutions supporting DEC's fracking decision spread | Innovation Trail Outside Wednesday’s town board meeting in Windsor, drilling advocates handed out pro-drilling stickers. About 150 people showed up and most of them put a sticker on. The issue on that night was Resolution 24 - the town board’s May declaration of support for state, not local government, power decide whether fracking comes to New York. (Friday 13, 2012) Innovation Trail [more on Fracking in our area]
- 7/14/2012 - In Rochester, NY environmental media we’re not there yet, not quite an official drought, not quite mentioning #climatechange but I think it’s coming… The new normal: abnormally dry | 520 – An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle In case you were wondering about all that brown grass and brush-fire smoke, the Rochester area is not in an official drought — but we’re darned close. The latest U.S. Drought Monitor report, dated Tuesday, now show much of western and central New York, including Monroe County, to now be “abnormally dry.” The western edges of Genesee and Orleans counties, as well as Niagara and most of Erie, are now listed as suffering “moderate drought.” (July 12, 2012) 520 – An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle
- 7/14/2012 - Considering how effective energy efficiency has on reducing greenhouse gases shouldn’t the US be doing a lot more while increasing renewable energy? U.S. Ranks Ninth Out of 12 Countries in Energy Efficiency | InsideClimate News The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy's first-ever global survey showed the United States fared poorly, ranking ninth among 12 of the world's largest economies. The council's International Energy Efficiency Scorecard, released Thursday, showed the United Kingdom in first place with a score of 67 out of 100, thanks to efficient industrial and transportation sectors. Germany came in second at 66 points for strong national leadership across its entire economy. (July 13, 2012) | InsideClimate News [more on Climate Change in our area]
- 7/14/2012 - Don’t you see a lot of man-made hubris similarities between Japan’s nuclear disaster #climatechange? In both cases those in power who are supposed to be leading and protecting us have a mind-set that isn’t precautionary and prudent. But the consequences of not addressing Climate Change will be far worse than a single nuclear disaster. Groups: U.S. Shares 'Mindset' Behind Japan's Nuclear Disaster WASHINGTON, DC, July 12, 2012 (ENS) - The same "man-made" problems underlying last year's nuclear disaster in Japan exist today in the United States, warn five U.S. groups responding to the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission's report to Japan's Diet, or parliament. The Commission found that the accident at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, "...was the result of collusion between the government, the regulators and TEPCO, and the lack of governance by said parties. They effectively betrayed the nation's right to be safe from nuclear accidents. Therefore, we conclude that the accident was clearly 'man-made.'" (July 12, 2012) Environment News Service
- 7/14/2012 - Listen to a debate about Fracking in our region on Sunday (7/15/2012). Will they connect dots between Fracking and Climate Change? Intelligence Squared US: No Fracking Way: The Natural Gas Boom is Doing More Harm Than Good | WXXI "Intelligence Squared US: No Fracking Way: The Natural Gas Boom is Doing More Harm Than Good Sun, 07/15/2012 - 9:00pm AM 1370 - NPR News & Talk Communities across the country are weighing the merits of natural gas against the harmful effects of fracking. Touted for its environmental, economic, and national security benefits, natural gas is often considered a “bridge” in our transition from fossil fuels to renewables. Hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” uses millions of gallons of water, sand and undisclosed chemicals. The process threatens drinking water and is linked to earthquakes. Intelligence Squared joins the Aspen Ideas Festival for a debate with top thought leaders, airing Sunday, July 15, 2012 at 9 p.m. on AM 1370/FM-HD91.5-2. " (July 15, 2012) WXXI | Go Public.
- 7/14/2012 - ACTION: Demonstrate your conviction that Fracking is not for New York State: "On Saturday, July 28, people from across the country will converge on Washington, DC to tell Congress, the President, and the world to STOP THE FRACK ATTACK . Want to join other Rochesterians on the bus to DC and standing up to tell the truth about fracking? The Sierra Club, Rochester Regional Group, wants to organize a bus to DC for this important act of democracy, if there are enough riders. If you are interested in taking the bus on July 28th, please let Linda know ASAP so she can secure a bus: firstname.lastname@example.org. NOTE: The Rochester bus is not definite yet; we have to see if there is enough interest. Please help us make it happen by participating! The tentative plan is for the bus to start in Rochester and possibly stop in other parts of the State to pick up additional folks. The Sierra Club is providing a small subsidy, but even with that, each rider will have to pay somewhere between $35 and $65, unless you or a business or an organization you know of can make a donation (not tax-deductible) to help offset the cost for riders. Please also let Linda know that (e-mail address above). "
- 7/14/2012 - Get the latest Blue Green Algae report from Save Our Sodus this week: Blue Green Algae Report for 07-12-2012 "Blue Green Algal data collected 07/12/2012 Results of Sodus Bay Toxin Samples Collected on July 12th, 2012 and sent to SOS on 07-13-2012 "
- 7/13/2012 - OK, you named it. This is our greatest Fracking fear in NYS. We don’t want the Fracking business to own us. We’ll own ourselves, thank you very much. The Fight Over Fracking in Colorado's North Fork Valley - Businessweek ". I felt a cold and growing fear. That was it. The reporter had articulated the dread: that once a gas and oil company gets into your valley, they own you. They own the hospital. They own the commissioners. They own your mountains, and they will do what they want. " (July 12, 2012) Businessweek - Business News, Stock Market & Financial Advice
- 7/13/2012 - ACTION: For our region, one of the biggest threats from Climate Change will come to combined sewer overflows because the present design of most sewer systems around the Great Lakes and the increase of extreme and frequent rainfall. Be a part of the solution on this major issue: Funding Great Lakes Sewage Infrastructure: Why It’s Critical to Improving Water Quality | Join us for a webinar on Wed., July 25 at noon Central time. Each year, tens of billions of gallons of combined untreated sewage and storm runoff is dumped into the Great Lakes, fouling the water and causing Great Lakes beach closings and swimming advisories. Many municipalities have plans for sewer system improvements to reduce these overflows, but infrastructure improvements are expensive. Federal funding is declining and municipal investment in water and wastewater infrastructure exceeds $100 billion annually. --from Home: Alliance for the Great Lakes
- 7/13/2012 - Good to see Climate Change understanding coming to a major media during our present heatwave. Slowly, the media turns its eyes to our greatest threat this century. Now Do You Believe in Global Warming? - TIME Back in February of 2010, Senator James Inhofe's grandchildren built an igloo for Al Gore. Inhofe is an Oklahoma Republican and the most skeptical of Congressional climate deniers; he's the one who called global warming "the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the American people." The 2010 winter was one of the snowiest in recent memory — including a massive blizzard that February that became known as "Snowmageddon" — which skeptics like Inhofe happily used as evidence that man-made climate change didn't really exist. So Inhofe's daughter, son-in-law and four grandchildren built a snowpacked igloo in Washington after one major storm, and stuck a sign on it: "Al Gore's New Home." (July 10, 2012) Health, Science, Medicine, Fitness News - TIME.com
- 7/13/2012 - I’m betting that the health effects from wind farms on nearby residents doesn’t compare with those caused by living near a nuclear plant, a Fracking site, or a coal plant. Not to mention a wind farm doesn’t warm the planet and threaten our water, air, and our existence. Canada to Study Health Effects of Wind Turbine Noise OTTAWA, Canada, July 12, 2012 (ENS) - Canadian health and statistics agencies are planning to explore the impact of wind turbine noise on the health of people living near wind power developments. Saying that reported health effects are "poorly understood due to limited scientific research in this area," Health Canada, in collaboration with Statistics Canada, will conduct a two-year study of noise-related health problems in communities near the rapidly multiplying number of wind farms across the country. (July 12, 2012) Environment News Service
- 7/13/2012 - Climate Change film and discussion: Don’t forget to have an opportunity to learn about Climate Change on July 19th at The Little Theatre where a showing of “The Island President” will be followed by a discussion, sponsored by the Greentopia Festival. Greentopia | FILM | Rochester, NY THE ISLAND PRESIDENT FROM THE FILMMAKERS OF THE RAPE OF EUROPA AND LOST BOYS OF SUDAN WINNER OF THE TORONTO INT. FILM FESTIVAL PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARD FOR DOCUMENTARY DIRECTED BY JON SHENK PRODUCED BY RICHARD BERGE AND BONNI COHEN 101 MINUTES with PANEL DISCUSSION FOLLOWING FILM PRE and POST ENTERTAINMENTS Greentopia Festival | Rochester, NY
- 7/13/2012 - Environmental job opportunity for students this summer: Employment Opportunities Graduate and Undergraduate Student Environmental Education Opportunities: Title: Watercraft Monitoring Steward Open Positions: Multiple Location: Finger Lakes and Southern Lake Ontario boat launch sites Duration: Approximately June 1 â€“ August 31, 2012 Deadline: Rolling until positions are filled Summary of Position: The Watercraft Monitoring Steward will be responsible for public outreach and education on slowing and preventing the spread of aquatic invasive species (AIS). Each steward will be responsible for conducting watercraft inspections and educating watercraft operators according to a standard operating procedure for controlling AIS throughout the Finger Lakes/Lake Ontario waterways. from Hobart and William Smith Colleges :: Finger Lakes Institute
- 7/13/2012 - If you are aware of the world-wide decline of amphibians and reptiles, this project may interest you as three types of frogs are going to be petitioned as endangered for the Rochester, NY area: Petition for 53 amphibians and Reptiles: Map Want to see which frogs, turtles and salamanders in your backyard are part of the record-breaking Endangered Species Act petition we just filed? Check out our new interactive map! --from Center for Biological Diversity
- 7/12/2012 - Learn how to make active transportation (walking and bicycling) safer and better mode of Transportation in the Rochester, NY region. PBIC and APHA Offer Free Webinar on Health Impact Assessments and Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety CHAPEL HILL, NC — The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC) in conjunction with the American Public Health Association announces the next free webinar in its Livable Communities Webinar Series: Using Health Impact Assessments to Connect Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety and Health Tuesday, July 24, 2012 3:30 p.m. — 5:00 p.m. EDT To register, visit: Using Health Impact Assessments to connect bicycle and pedestrian safety and health. Health impact assessments are a valuable tool for estimating the health impact of various projects and policies. This webinar will explore what health impact assessments are and how they can be used to connect bicycle and pedestrian safety and health. Bethany Rogerson, senior associate for the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trusts, will provide an overview of HIA programs and how they can add value to a decision-making process.
- 7/12/2012 - ACTION: Tired of oil spills fouling our environment? Do something about that on August 4th : "Join the Raging Grannies in once again calling for an end to offshore oil drilling and a renewed focus on renewable energy. We will join hands on Saturday, August 4th, at noon in cooperation with organizations all across the country and the world. Where: Charlotte Beach When: August 4th Time: Noon Contact: Diana Voellinger, 467-7431 "
- 7/12/2012 - Recycling for our environment and our municipal health I got to attend the second meeting of the Buffalo Recycling Alliance, a multi-group alliance in Buffalo, NY to address these recycling issues: Businesses, especially restaurants, muti-family unit recycling, residential recycling, school and university recycling, recycling for special events, recycling as art, composing, and communication. We don’t yet have an umbrella group like this in Rochester, NY for pulling effort of many groups towards increasing our region’s recycling rate. But we’re working on that. This quote from the alliance is about Buffalo, and I’m sure pertains to Rochester and most cities in NY and beyond, “Potential Savings |The City has to pay to tip its garbage, but it gets paid for its recyclables; thus, the City estimates that it saves about $150,000 for every 3,500 tons of waste recycled, and that every one percent increase in the recycling rate will save the City between $70,000 and $100,000.” (from Reshaping Buffalo’s Recycling Initiatives) more...
- 7/12/2012 - It’s great to see the Citizen Science plan, where citizens are trained to help monitor our environment, is being used in our area. Citizen Scientists may be critical in monitoring our environment as Climate Change makes it more necessary that we understand how our environment is changing. Citizen science, for Canandaigua Lake - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow As concerns mount over preserving Canandaigua Lake in the face of threats both manmade and environmental, from the potential expansion of natural gas drilling to harmful weed growth and weather extremes, conservation efforts by volunteers are becoming even more priceless. (July 11, 2012) Home - Canandaigua, NY - MPNnow
- 7/11/2012 - Who will speak for the geese, the ‘dangerous geese’? As local wildlife increasingly threatens our way of life as we take over more and more of our environment with seven billon folks will the answer to ‘dangerous geese’ and other inconvenient beasts be death? They say that the Anthropocene will be a lonely time, where our species wipes out most of the others to accommodate our way of life, but will the loss of biodiversity also be like removing parts of a complex biological engine we need to have working perfectly like a jet plane to survive? With molting season for Canada geese underway, feds act to remove dangerous birds from airports WASHINGTON – Federal authorities are taking action today to remove more than 750 geese from the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge and protect New York City airports from bird strikes. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) last week issued its final decision to adopt their final environmental impact study laying out a combination of lethal and non-lethal methods for reducing the risk of bird strikes at JFK Airport. The Interior Department moved forward today with the removal of these birds that pose a risk to public safety. The announcement comes after Gillibrand pushed the USDA to expedite this final decision, and in a phone conversation, she had urged Interior Secretary Salazar to quickly issue new permits for the removal of geese from the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge immediately upon this formal acceptance of the study. The feds are now taking action today to mitigate the Canada geese during the critical molting period when they are flightless. (July 11, 2012) New York State News on the Net!
- 7/11/2012 - What would a warmer Great Lakes look like? The article below gives some hints at what an usually warm year can do to the natural operations of one of the Great Lakes, but some of the big five are larger and deeper than others. Fish and plants evolve in very specific temperature zones, with some animals and plants more sensitive to temperatures than others, and tend to move or die if those temperatures change radically. It might be prudent to slow down or reverse rising temperature as we may not like the changes in our Great Lakes. 'Cooler by the lake' is fading this summer Lake Michigan heating up amid scorching summer Lake Michigan is rapidly heating up courtesy of last week's 100-degree air temperatures. Daytime surface temperatures off the shores of southeastern Wisconsin were in the mid- to upper 70s Monday. That's 5 to 10 degrees higher than a year ago. (July 9, 2012) Milwaukee Journal Sentinel - Breaking news, sports, business, watchdog journalism in Wisconsin
- 7/11/2012 - Here’s a chance to zero in on what the State of the Climate was in 2011 from NOAA: ClimateWatch Magazine » State of the Climate in 2011: Highlights "Each year, following months of number crunching and fact-checking, hundreds of climate and earth scientists contribute to a global-scale evaluation of climate and environmental conditions over the previous year. This analysis—our planet’s annual check up—is known as the State of the Climate report. Highlights of the 2011 State of the Climate report include wild weather extremes, a double-dip La Niña, and continued evidence of long-term climate warming. " NOAA Climate Services#climateWatch#climateWatch
- 7/10/2012 - Here we are: our ideology agenda vs. our need to model reality correctly so we can react, adapt, and plan our future. It’s not just Canada that’s going dumb. US is a major Climate Change denier. Our media won’t even question our presidential candidates on Climate Change, even though it just burnt up the West with a record breaking heatwave. What will the public do when the scientists join the students and the 99% in the streets? Who’ll watch the protests if everyone’s but the deniers and ideologues are marching? Canada's PM Stephen Harper faces revolt by scientists | Environment | guardian.co.uk Scientists to march through Ottawa in white lab coats in protest at cuts to research and environmental damage Canada's prime minister, Stephen Harper, faces a widening revolt by the country's leading scientists against sweeping cuts to government research labs and broadly pro-industry policies. The scientists plan to march through Ottawa in white lab coats on Tuesday in the second big protest in a month against the Harper government's science and environmental agenda. Harper is accused of pushing through a slew of policies weakening or abolishing environmental protections – with an aim of expanding development of natural resources such as the Alberta tar sands. (July 9, 2012) Latest US news, world news, sport and comment from the Guardian | guardiannews.com | The Guardian
- 7/10/2012) - Interesting interactive slideshow on what’s coming for major urban areas on Climate Change: Top 20 Cities with Billions at Risk from Climate Change: Cities by the Sea - Bloomberg Cities by the Sea By 2050, more than 6 billion humans are expected to live in cities, according to the United Nations. Ports, which constitute more than half the world's largest cities, will face unique challenges as their populations swell. (July 5, 2012) Bloomberg - Business, Financial & Economic News, Stock Quotes
- 7/10/2012 - A good article on why we shouldn’t drag our feet on connecting the dots of the present heatwave and Climate Change: As freak weather becomes the norm, we need to adapt - opinion - 09 July 2012 - New Scientist IT HAS been yet another week of extraordinary weather. Torrential rainfall caused chaos across the UK. A record-breaking heatwave drifted across the US, broken by freak thunderstorms that left a trail of destruction from Chicago to Washington DC. Meanwhile, in India and Bangladesh more than 100 people were killed and half a million fled when the monsoon arrived with a vengeance. We have become used to reports of extreme weather events playing down any connection with climate change. The refrain is usually along the lines of "you cannot attribute any single event to global warming". But increasingly this is no longer the case. The science of climate attribution - which makes causal connections between climate change and weather events - is advancing rapidly, and with it our understanding of what we can expect in years to come. (July 9, 2012) Science news and science jobs from New Scientist - New Scientist
- 7/10/2010 - While our local media is busy avoiding connecting the dots between the latest heatwave and Climate Change you might watch this short video by Senator Bernie Sanders on how the US government is failing the public on this issue and why. Global Warming is Real - Newsroom: Bernie Sanders - U.S. Senator for Vermont ""Global warming is real and to a very significant degree global warming is man made," Sen. Bernie Sanders said Wednesday at the outset of a special, one-hour Senate floor session. He was joined by Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse, Tom Udall and Al Franken in the effort to draw greater public awareness to the problem and to the international scientific consensus on what is causing the climate to change. They also discussed the potential for creating well-paying jobs in the process of transforming our energy system to rely on renewable and sustainable sources of energy, such as wind and solar power. " (February 15, 2012) Bernie Sanders - U.S. Senator for Vermont
- 7/10/2012 - The transition from burning fossil fuels to renewable energy (wind and solar) will take time because our government is OK with fossil fuel subsidies and not so much with renewable. Even though our planet is warming because of the burning of fossil fuels. NCPR News - North Country looks to home-grown energy, but hurdles remain (07/09/12) The last few years, state and local leaders have staked a growing part of the North Country's economic future on green energy production. Last year, the state's big Regional Economic Development Council grant to the North Country offered millions of dollars to renewable energy projects from Lyons Falls to Fort Drum. The Adirondack North Country Association has also made clean energy development one of its top priorities. But big questions remain about the industry's future. Can it compete with traditional sources of energy? Will government subsidies be maintained? Will a growing energy sector actually bring sustainable jobs? Brian Mann has our story. (June 9, 2012) NCPR: North Country Public Radio
- 7/09/2012 - This is an environmental issue we need to attend to: What is causing ‘dead zone’ in our lakes and rivers? Dead zone pollutant grows despite decades of work. But who’s the culprit? — Environmental Health News For two centuries, the town of Hermann has been known for the Missouri River. But now the river is making Hermann known for an unexpected reason: It is a hot spot for nitrate. Despite three decades of costly efforts to clean it up, the levels at Hermann have increased 75 percent since 1980. From farm and urban runoff, nitrate throughout the vast Mississippi River basin funnels into the Gulf of Mexico, where it sucks oxygen out of the water and kills almost everything in its path. One of America’s most widespread and challenging environmental problems, this pollution continues to pour into the rivers – and ultimately the Gulf – at a growing pace. And no one has figured out exactly why. One theory is that more fertilizer is washing into the watershed because corn acreage has skyrocketed. But some old nitrate could be bubbling up from contaminated groundwater, and urban population growth could play a role, too. (July 9, 2012) Environmental Health News
- 7/09/2012 - Mr. President and Mr. Romney, it’s getting very hot down here in reality land! Many of us trying to connect the dots between current weather calamities (heatwave, wildfires) and Climate Change are probably beating a dead horse. There are so many reasons why the public cannot or won’t get the message that we are in a planetary heat-up that it’s not even funny. (Though Climate Change champion, author, and activist Bill McKibben actually tried humor this week: Bill McKibben on the Global Warming Hoax) Hey, we’re desperate. Nothing seems to work. Even though this week’s news is full of stories on the heatwave, only a few media are connecting the dots. more...
Events – Rochester Environmental Events Calendar – [The most complete listing of all environmental events around the Rochester, New York area.] If you don’t see your event, or know of a local environmental event, please send me the info: FrankRegan@RochesterEnvironment.com with (EV event) in the subject line. Also, be sure to check other calendars and environmental series for multi-day events.
- Thursday, July 19 at 7PM, The Little Theatre 240 East Avenue Rochester, NY 14604 email@example.com
- A chance to learn more about Climate Change from Greentopia Festival | Rochester, NY ‘s Greentopia | FILM. On Thursday, July 19 at 7PM, The Little Theatre will be showing “The Island President”. A panel (yet to be determined) discussion will follow the film with Q&A. We will update you as soon as we know more, but in the meantime here’s the Synopsis “Jon Shenk’s The Island President is the story of President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives, a man confronting a problem greater than any other world leader has ever faced—the literal survival of his country and everyone in it. After bringing democracy to the Maldives after thirty years of despotic rule, Nasheed is now faced with an even greater challenge: as one of the most low-lying countries in the world, a rise of three feet in sea level would submerge the 1200 islands of the Maldives enough to make them uninhabitable.”
- July 23 at 11AM @ East Bank - Baush and Lomb Park (U of R Campus) At the foot of the Bridge
- Due to several logistical issues, the City of Rochester has changed the date of the Ribbon Cutting for the Erie Lackawanna Bridge Rails to Trails project to the following: Erie Lackawanna Bridge “Rails to Trails” Conversion Ribbon Cutting Event July 23rd, 2012 Monday at 11:00am East Bank - Baush and Lomb Park (U of R Campus) At the foot of the Bridge (Note: new date: Monday - July 23rd)
- City of Rochester | Erie Lackawanna Rails-to-Trails Pedestrian Bridge "The City's efforts to improve and develop new shared use walking and biking trails, especially along the Genesee River, include converting the abandoned historic Erie-Lackawanna Railroad Bridge over the Genesee River into a Rails-to-Trails pedestrian bridge. "
- Tuesday, July 24, 2012 3:30 p.m. — 5:00 p.m. EDT To register, visit: Using Health Impact Assessments to connect bicycle and pedestrian safety and health.
- Learn how to make active transportation (walking and bicycling) safer and better mode of Transportation in the Rochester, NY region. PBIC and APHA Offer Free Webinar on Health Impact Assessments and Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety CHAPEL HILL, NC — The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC) in conjunction with the American Public Health Association announces the next free webinar in its Livable Communities Webinar Series: Using Health Impact Assessments to Connect Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety and Health Tuesday, July 24, 2012 3:30 p.m. — 5:00 p.m. EDT To register, visit: Using Health Impact Assessments to connect bicycle and pedestrian safety and health. Health impact assessments are a valuable tool for estimating the health impact of various projects and policies. This webinar will explore what health impact assessments are and how they can be used to connect bicycle and pedestrian safety and health. Bethany Rogerson, senior associate for the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Pew Charitable Trusts, will provide an overview of HIA programs and how they can add value to a decision-making process.
- Saturday, August 25, noon to 6pm | Monroe Avenue between Rutgers and Oxford
- Spokes and Ink – A Bike and Poster Party Spokes and Ink at the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education Saturday, August 25, 2012 Noon to 6pm Monroe Avenue at Oxford/Rutgers Spokes and Ink is a new festival in Rochester that brings bicyclists and artists together. This event on Monroe Avenue showcases the diversity of both groups – avid cyclists, recreational riders, the environmentally aware, letterpress printers, graphic designers and talented artists of all sorts! There will be poster art, food and merchandise for sale, live music and activities to attract a crowd. In the inaugural year of 2011, Spokes & Ink drew 600+ guests. 2012 is expected to be bigger and better! If you are interested in reaching this wide-ranging demographic who are into bicycles and art or just want to support this activity for others, please consider a sponsorship. Your business or organization could benefit from the exposure that is possible at Spokes and Ink. What: Spokes and Ink – A Bike and Poster Party Where: Monroe Avenue between Rutgers and Oxford When: Saturday, August 25, noon to 6pm Proceeds from the event will benefit the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education and R Community Bikes. The Genesee Center for the Arts & Education is a community-based 501(c)3 organization that educates, encourages and inspires all people to create and enjoy the visual arts. We have 40+ years of experience in serving the Rochester community with great arts programming including classes, exhibits, studio access and special events. R Community Bikes is a grassroots, 501(c)3 organization that collects and repairs used bicycles for distribution, free of charge, to Rochester, NY's most needy children and adults. Their mission is meeting the basic transportation needs of those in the community who depend on bikes for recreation as well as for transport to work, school, rehabilitation programs, and training sessions. If you have any questions about the Genesee Center for the Arts & Education or about Spokes and Ink, please call the office at 585-244-1730. We look forward to hearing from you!
- September 10th - 16th - High Falls region, Rochester, NY
- Greentopia 2012 Greentopia 2012 is a week-long celebration of inspiration through art, music, organic and locally grown food and beverages, ideas and activism. The expanded event will contain four programmatic aspects, which include Greentopia Innovation, Greentopia Film, Greentopia Music and Greentopia EcoFest. In its first year the event drew between 18-20,000 people to the historic High Falls district. Through how-to workshops and cutting-edge films, visitors learned about big green ideas and how to apply them creatively in everyday life. There are special family activities, a community recycled art installation, mouthwatering organic and local food and beverages, and all kinds of live music. Businesses and organizations showcased products and programs that help to restore the planet, promote green living – even save consumers some money.
Action – Take Action - Often, I receive request to pass on alerts, petitions, Public Comments on local developments, and environmental items needing action by the Rochester Community and around the world. I’ll keep Actions posted until their due date.
- ACTION: July 25th at noon:
- For our region, one of the biggest threats from Climate Change will come to combined sewer overflows because the present design of most sewer systems around the Great Lakes and the increase of extreme and frequent rainfall. Be a part of the solution on this major issue: Funding Great Lakes Sewage Infrastructure: Why It’s Critical to Improving Water Quality | Join us for a webinar on Wed., July 25 at noon Central time. Each year, tens of billions of gallons of combined untreated sewage and storm runoff is dumped into the Great Lakes, fouling the water and causing Great Lakes beach closings and swimming advisories. Many municipalities have plans for sewer system improvements to reduce these overflows, but infrastructure improvements are expensive. Federal funding is declining and municipal investment in water and wastewater infrastructure exceeds $100 billion annually. --from Home: Alliance for the Great Lakes
- ACTION: Due Date: July 28 - not definate yet find out more...
- Demonstrate your conviction that Fracking is not for New York State: "On Saturday, July 28, people from across the country will converge on Washington, DC to tell Congress, the President, and the world to STOP THE FRACK ATTACK . Want to join other Rochesterians on the bus to DC and standing up to tell the truth about fracking? The Sierra Club, Rochester Regional Group, wants to organize a bus to DC for this important act of democracy, if there are enough riders. If you are interested in taking the bus on July 28th, please let Linda know ASAP so she can secure a bus: firstname.lastname@example.org. NOTE: The Rochester bus is not definite yet; we have to see if there is enough interest. Please help us make it happen by participating! The tentative plan is for the bus to start in Rochester and possibly stop in other parts of the State to pick up additional folks. The Sierra Club is providing a small subsidy, but even with that, each rider will have to pay somewhere between $35 and $65, unless you or a business or an organization you know of can make a donation (not tax-deductible) to help offset the cost for riders. Please also let Linda know that (e-mail address above). "
- ACTION: Due date: August 4th :
- "Join the Raging Grannies in once again calling for an end to offshore oil drilling and a renewed focus on renewable energy. We will join hands on Saturday, August 4th, at noon in cooperation with organizations all across the country and the world. Where: Charlotte Beach When: August 4th Time: Noon Contact: Diana Voellinger, 467-7431 "
- ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Environment Petition: Prohibit All Fracking Related Activities on Monroe County Properties, NY | Change.org "The magnitude of New York State’s upcoming decision to permit and regulate high-volume, slick-water, horizontal hydraulic fracturing (fracking) demands immediate attention and action by our County Legislature to ensure self-determination and the health and safety of our community. "
- ACTIONDue Date Now:
- This is important. As tax credits dwindle for wind power, the fossil fuels, which have made more money since money was invented, are getting big public bailouts. Let’s end that: Petition - Support the End Polluter Welfare Act: Bernie Sanders - U.S. Senator for Vermont "At a time when we have a record debt, Congress should not continue to give away taxpayer money to the established, highly profitable fossil fuel industry. Fossil fuels are subsidized at nearly 6 times the rate of renewable energy. From 2002 to 2008, the US Government gave the mature fossil fuel industry over $72 billion in subsidies, while investments in the emerging renewable industry totaled $12.2 billion. " from Bernie Sanders - U.S. Senator for Vermont
- ACTION: Due Date: Now
- 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.
- ACTION: Due Date now:
- Ask our mayor of Rochester, NY what he is doing to prepare Rochester, NY for Climate Change: WWF - Earth Hour City Challenge - Earth Hour City Challenge "Earth Hour City Challenge This year WWF is challenging cities to do more than turn out their lights for Earth Hour. The Earth Hour City Challenge is a year-long competition among cities to prepare for increasingly extreme weather and promote renewable energy. Participating U.S. cities receive resources and gain recognition for their efforts to curb carbon pollution and prepare their communities for the harmful consequences of climate change. Learn more about the City Challenge See how your city is at risk from extreme weather – tell your mayor to prepare! " WWF - Earth Hour City Challenge - Earth Hour City Challenge
- ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Tell the NRC: Expand emergency evacuation zones Today, NIRS and 37 other organizations submitted a formal Petition for Rulemaking to the NRC to expand emergency evacuation zones around U.S. nuclear reactors and make other improvements in emergency preparedness. We're calling this the Nuclear 911 campaign. You can join us as a co-petitioner below! The widespread radioactive contamination caused by the Fukushima nuclear disaster (and Chernobyl before it) makes clear that the current 10 mile Emergency Planning Zones in the U.S. are woefully inadequate to protect the American people. "Nuclear Information and Resource Service - NIRS
- ACTION: Due Date: Now
- What to do something concrete about solving Climate Change? Go here: "Are you passionate about changing the conversation about the climate crisis? Are you interested in leading the climate movement? What if I said you have the chance to be personally trained by Al Gore to educate others about climate change? This summer, you could have that chance. I'd like to invite you to apply to be one of our esteemed Climate Reality Presenters -- impassioned volunteer leaders who bring the reality of climate change to people around the world. We call our grassroots network of Presenters the heart of our Climate Leadership Corps. Learn more: "Climate Reality "To reveal the complete truth about the climate crisis in a way that ignites the moral courage in each of us. " Climate Reality | Climate Reality Training Application
- ACTION:Due Date Now
- Request from the DEC for some help on keeping our Great Lakes healthy: "Your Observations Can Help the Health of the Great Lakes! If you spend time around the Great Lakes shoreline, please consider sharing your observations of injured or dead animals, or algal blooms by using the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative - Wildlife Health Event Reporter (http://glri.wher.org/) (GLRI-WHER). Scientists working in state, federal and non-profit agencies are looking for your help to identify events that are important in research of avian botulism and algal bloom outbreaks, in the interest of protecting wildlife from this disease as well as algal neurotoxins. For a healthy Great Lakes ecosystem, do your part and share what you see by setting up a reporter account (http://glri.wher.org/users/add) on the GLRI-WHER website. E-mail any questions regarding reporting to email@example.com.
- ACTION: Due Date: Now
- Sewage Pollution - Citizens Campaign for the Environment "Many communities in New York State, Connecticut, and throughout the nation are served by aging and dilapidated sewage infrastructure. When our sewage infrastructure is not properly operated or maintained, billions of gallons of untreated raw sewage can be released in to the environment before reaching a treatment plant. Sewage is primarily discharged into the environment through Sanitary Sewer Overflows (SSO) and Combined Sewer Overflows (CSO). Separate sewer systems carry only wastewater such as domestic sanitary waste and commercial and industrial waste to a sewage treatment plant. Separate sewers are not designed or intended to carry water such as storm water. SSOs occur in separate systems. Combined sewer systems are built larger than separate sewers so that they can carry two components: wastewater, carried continuously, and runoff, carried after storms. How you can help: Email your state representatives. Urge them to support a Sewage Pollution Right-to-Know law. Sewage overflows put our environment, economy, and health at risk; and we deserve the right to know when they occur. "
- ACTION: Due date: Now
- Take action for our Great Lakes "Speak Out Now to Set the U.S.-Canada Strategy for Protecting our Great Lakes The health of our Great Lakes is threatened by new challenges — including invasive species, climate change, habitat loss and emerging contaminants. The United States and Canada are now completing negotiations on an updated version of the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, a binational agreemet to address Great Lakes threats. " from Alliance for the Great Lakes
Award – Environmental Site of the Month Award – [On the last Sunday of each month, we present an environmental award for the Rochester-area environmental web site or blog that best promotes the need to protect and offers solutions for our area's environmental issues.]
Frank J. Regan - Please visit: http://RochesterEnvironment.com: Where you can get all the environmental news, events, documents, and services on the Internet for Rochester, New York. Also: http://www.facebook.com/RochesterEnvironment
RochesterEnvironment.com is the most complete, non-profit environmental site for any one city in the world. You can also subscribe to RochesterEnvironment.Com. Once a month, get RochesterEnvironment.com's "RENewsletter in your mail" - http://rochesterenvironment.com/subscribe.htm. Or, join in discussion on Rochester environmental matters at Environmental Thoughts - Rochester, NY - http://rochesterenvironmentny.blogspot.com/