September 2021 Environmental Action Update
Hurricane Ida Follow-up: As we pick up the pieces from the remnants of Hurricane Ida, it should be clear to everyone in the Hudson Valley and the greater NYC metropolitan area that climate adaptation and mitigation should be a priority. Ida is just the most recent manifestation of the increasingly intense rainstorms impacting this region as a result of climate change. We must protect wetlands and avoid development in floodplains that help absorb flood waters. At the same time, we must cut back on the greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change. Preventing construction of the proposed Danskammer gas-fired power plant would be an important step in that direction.
As we offer our sympathy to people dealing with flooded subways, roads, basements, and more, we urge Metro North and Amtrak to plan for future storm surges and sea-level rise, including the possible need for strategic relocation of the east of Hudson Line out of the floodplain.
Given the severity of the storms we are experiencing and witnessing — the intense flooding, the wildfires and other manifestations of climate change, it is more important than ever that we take action to address the global climate crisis. The recent IPCC report states clearly that climate change is getting worse more rapidly than previously expected and that the number one action we must take to ensure the global temperature does not increase above 1.5oC is to stop burning fossil fuel. Fracked gas, which would be used at the proposed Danskammer power plant, is methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Fugitive methane escapes from the fracking wells to processing, transportation and at the site of energy generation, therefore we cannot continue to generate electricity using it or any other fossil fuel. That’s why Clearwater is working so hard to prevent the Danskammer expansion, to support a battery storage alternative, and to implement a regional renewable energy implementation plan.
Clearwater is also working with local riverfront communities to address environmental and climate justice and resilience and to promote climate solutions. Please join us by actively offering public comment to oppose Danskammer (see below).
Another important action you can take is to urge your community to map its potential solar and other renewable energy resources so we can scale up truly clean energy generation and rapidly transition to a renewable energy economy with storage and efficiency. This Fall we will be convening a group of towns, cities and villages to participate in this project using Scenic Hudson’s Solar Mapping Toolkit Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com if you are able to help or interested in finding out about this or the many other Climate Solutions we can and urgently need to be working on.
State Allots Hudson Valley Clean Water Grants: The New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation has approved more than $53 million for municipalities across the state. In the Hudson Valley, the town of Lewisboro in Westchester County received $289,500 to install water treatment software and new equipment. The Town of Highlands in Orange County received $1,569,584 in long-term, interest-free financing for wastewater treatment plant repairs and improvements. Full story here.
Danskammer Permit Public Comments: The battle to stop the proposed Danskammer expansion continues. There is a Sept.13th deadline for comments relating to the DEC Title V air permit. Click here to learn more. On Sept.28th and 29th, the Siting Board will be holding a second set of virtual public hearings relating to Article X. Click here to learn more for the 28th and here for the 29th.
Events of Interest:
Friday – Sunday, Sept. 10 – 12: Clearwater will table and speak at the Magic Forest Fest in Coeymans. Opening Friday at 3pm, camp amongst arboreal friends and fungi in the Magic Forest for this spectacular festival! Dance through the sunset to a diverse lineup of live music with artists performing Anti-Folk and Folk, Electronic, Heavy and Indie Rock, Jam and other styles! Watch visual artists paint, spray, and capture the magic of infinite musical moments! Participate in interactive workshops, including a Mushroom Identification Walk, Herbalist Talks and Yoga Instruction each day! There will be farm fresh food prepared onsite and unique vendors all weekend! Matt Salton will be speaking at 8 p.m. on Friday evening and Manna Jo Greene will be speaking at 12 noon on Saturday.
Oct. 17 – 24 Sustainable Hudson Valley is hosting a Climate Solutions Week
Thurs., Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. Clearwater’s contribution to this listing of climate-related events will focus on Climate Solutions and You(th), with virtual presentations and a panel discussion on climate solutions that young people can participate in, including youth activists and experts in areas of energy, community activism, electoral politics, and NY’s strong Climate Act. Watch for further information in next month’s e-news..