Tuesday January 27, 2015 – United for Action Conference Call
Due to a blizzard threatening New York City and the Northeast region, we have rescheduled the United for Action monthly meeting on Tuesday 1/27/15 to a conference call at 6:30 pm. It is most important to have everyone safe and warm at home. Please call in on 712-432-1500 access code 972226.
When: Tuesday 1/27/15 at 6:30 pm
Conference Call Detail: Dial-in-Number 712-432-1500 Access code 972226 (please note there are three 2’s in the access code)
We invited three special guests to give us brief presentations on the phone: Susan Van Dolsen will give us update on the Algonquin AIM project, Stephanie Low will give us update on TPP, Ken Gale will give us update on one or two pending New York City Council bills.
There will be a brief Q&A on the phone after each speaker finishes with their presentation. If you wish, we’ll also have a chance to report back on some activities and discuss what will come next. Hope to have many of you join us on the phone call. Please take care and stay safe and warm.
Tuesday February 3, 2015 – REV Hearing in NYC
When: Tuesday 2/3/15 Information Session at 3:00 pm and again at 6:00 pm, followed by Public Statement Hearing at 4:00 pm and 7:00 pm
Where: Borough of Manhattan Community College at 199 Chambers Street, between Greenwich Street and West Street
Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) is a process initiated by the New York Public Service Commission (PSC), which is the state agency that regulates the utility companies in New York. REV seeks to speed up the transition to energy efficiency and renewables by overhauling the regulations that govern utility companies and designing new energy markets. So far, the process has been dominated by utility companies. The public’s voice must be heard so that we can demand an energy future that is designed by and for New Yorkers.
Please click on the AGREE website here to get more information on REV, learn about other hearing dates and places in New York State and talking points on how and where to comment.
There is also a REV briefing and training call on Wednesday 1/28/15 at 8:00 pm hosted by Anthony Giancatarino, Director of Policy and Strategy for The Center for Social Inclusion, to prepare us for the REV hearings. Call in number: 302-202-1108, Code: 999246.
Call Your New York City Council Member to Sign on to Resolution 549 Calling on Governor Cuomo to Veto Port Ambrose
NYC Council Member Donovan Richards, Chairman of the NYC Council Environmental Protection Committee, introduced Resolution 549 on 1/22/15 opposing Port Ambrose and calling on Governor Cuomo to veto Port Ambrose.
Everyone please call your City Council Member and tell them to sign on to cosponsor this Resolution 549 because as a constituent this is important to you. Please click here to Find Your City Council Member.
Please also call:
Council Member Donovan Richards’ office at 212-788-7216, and
City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito’s office at 212-788-7210
and tell them that you support the Port Ambrose Resolution 549 and ask them to schedule a public hearing on Resolution 549 as soon as possible, then vote and pass the resolution by April since time is of the essence.
Of course we need you to continue to call Governor Cuomo and Governor Christie every day, or as often as you can, and tell them to veto Port Ambrose. Governor Cuomo and Governor Christie need to exercise their authority to veto this project within the next three months. We just need one of the Governors to exercise his veto power. If they remain silent, then it is deemed that they have given their approval.
Cuomo (518) 474-8390
Christie (609) 292-6000.
When you call Governor Cuomo please thank him for banning fracking in NY State; then ask him to veto Port Ambrose for the security and health of New Yorkers. When you call Governor Christie please remind him to keep his promise to veto Port Ambrose ever since he vetoed the same project once before in 2011.
Even if you attended the public hearings, we need everyone to submit written comments on the draft Environmental Impact Statement (dEIS) by Monday March 16, 2015.
By Mail: Docket Management Facility (USCG-2013-0363), U.S. Department of Transportation, West Building, Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue, S.E., Washington DC 20590;
By Fax: To the Docket Management Facility at (202) 493-2251;
Electronically: Through the Federal Docket Management System Website Please remember to state under docket number USCG-2013-0363.
In future emails we will provide helpful guidelines for writing comments when they become available. In the meantime you may wish to click on the No LNG Coalition Website for reasons to oppose Port Ambrose.
For New Yorkers please remember to copy and paste your comments into a letter form and mail it to Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, NYS State Capitol Building, Albany, NY 12224.
For New Jersey people please remember to copy and paste your comments into a letter form and mail it to Governor Chris Christie, PO Box 001,
Trenton, NJ 08625.
Congratulations! You did it!
Because of your relentless effort and fierce commitment to keep fracking from polluting our water, air and harming our health, last Wednesday on December 17, at a public, livestreamed meeting of Governor Cuomo’s cabinet in Albany, Governor Cuomo acknowledged the overwhelming science that speaks to the inherent dangers of fracking to public health and the environment presented by Joseph Martens, Commissioner of the Department of Environmental Conservation, and Dr. Howard Zucker, Commissioner of the Department of Health, Governor Cuomo banned high volume horizontal fracturing in New York State. This is truly a historic day. Let’s celebrate and savor this incredible moment.
We all know that this is only a step in the right direction, albeit a huge step. There is still a lot more work to be done. The only way we achieve our goal is to show up and not give up. Our hard won victory showed us that together we can do this. We will need you to show up as soon as the holidays are over.
Wednesday January 7, 2015 – Port Ambrose LNG Project Public Hearing
Port Ambrose is a liquefied natural gas (LNG) port that has been proposed by Liberty Natural Gas off Long Beach, Long Island for the New York/New Jersey Harbor where a proposed wind farm is to be built in the same area.
Liquefied natural gas is natural gas that has been super-chilled to -260 degrees, turning it into a liquid that is 1/600th the original volume of gas so large volumes can be shipped overseas in LNG tankers which are as long as the Empire State Building is tall. This project would damage our marine ecosystem, put us at risk from terrorist attacks, exacerbate climate change and put pressure to frack for more gas across the Northeast region.
Governor Cuomo and Governor Christie have the authority to veto this project. It’s up to us to make sure they both do the right thing and protect our public health. Call Cuomo (518) 474-8390 Call Christie (609) 292-6000. Ask them to veto Port Ambrose!
The Maritime Administration (MARAD) and U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) issued the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) recently during the holidays and scheduled only one public hearing in New York State on the same day as Governor Cuomo’s State of the State address, as well as only one public hearing in New Jersey. They may hope we will not be paying attention. But we will show them we are. We will turn out a massive number of people at these hearings to send a message that we will not allow our shores to be put in danger.
When: Wednesday 1/7/15. There will be an open house from 4:30 pm to 5:30 pm where people can sign up to speak at the hearing and pick up information material. The hearing will start at 6:00 pm.
Where: The JFK Hilton, located at 144-02 135th Avenue, Jamaica, NY 11436, right outside JFK airport
Our friends at Food and Water Watch has arranged for a bus to take people from Manhattan to JFK Hilton and back. The bus will leave at 2:00 pm from 34th Street and 8th Avenue and will be back at the same location by 9:30 pm. Please click here: Bus to Port Ambrose Hearing and sign up.
Alternatively, you may wish to take public transport to the hearing at JFK Hilton: Take the LIRR to Jamaica station, or the E, J, Z train to the Sutphin Blvd/ Archer Avenue stop. Transfer to the Q40 bus, and take it to the end of the line, which is right in front of the hotel where the hearing will be held.
We would encourage everyone to attend the hearing. We hope many of you would sign up to speak at the hearing and remember to tell Governor Cuomo to veto Port Ambrose. You may find this link to the No LNG Coalition website helpful for some talking points.
The New Jersey public hearing will be held on Thursday, January 8 at Sheraton Hotel, 6 Industrial Way East, Eatontown, NJ 07724
United for Action’s Christmas Party 2014
Enjoy the good food, cheer and companionship of NYC’s most outstanding Grassroots frontline group of anti-fracking activists. One of this group’s main activities for the last 4 years has been to hand out literature and talk to the public on street corners and any other place that they can put down a table and spread the words: FRACKING IS HARMFUL TO ALL LIVING AND NON-LIVING THINGS.
Friday December 12, 2014 – Deadline for Comment on DEC’s Revised Proposed LNG Regulations
The deadline for comment on the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC)’s Revised Proposed Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Regulations is December 12, 2014. There is an important change in the revised proposed regulations which is a direct result of our actions. DEC proposed a revision which would establish an upper limit of 70,000 gallons on the amount of LNG that a facility would be permitted to store. According to DEC, this revision is being made in response to approximately 57,000 submittals representing over 131,000 individual comments received during the proposed rule making about a year ago this time.
As you can see your comments really matter. DEC must hear from you on its revised proposed LNG rules. While we support the revised capacity limit, other changes are minor which means the proposed revised rules are still flawed and New Yorkers are still exposed to unnecessary risks. You can click on this link to see: How to Comment to DEC. Please take a few minutes to send in your comment today to DEC by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org and be sure to insert in the subject line: “Comments on Revised Proposed Part 570″.
For talking points, you may wish to refer to or copy and paste the below sample letter prepared by the amazing activist Keith Schue and Catskill Citizens for Safe Energy:
Dear Mr. Brauksieck:
I appreciate that the DEC has revised its proposed regulations for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to prohibit facilities exceeding 70,000 gallons in capacity. This will hopefully prevent disasters like the one which killed 40 workers on Staten Island in 1973. However I remain concerned that the proposed regulations still expose New Yorkers to unnecessary risk.
State statute specifically requires that the DEC establish “siting criteria” for new LNG facilities, yet the proposed regulations fail to do this. While municipalities may have the ability to zone out facilities, this does not release DEC from its statutory obligation of promulgating rules necessary to protect the public in jurisdictions where LNG is allowed. As presently proposed, the regs defer to industry fire codes that let an ambiguously defined “authority having jurisdiction” waive any requirement therein. Clear rules regarding the safe siting and operation or facilities must be adopted by DEC.
The proposed regulations also contain no requirement for the recapture of methane gas, which is commonly vented from storage tanks, lost during LNG transfer, or bled from vehicles prior to refueling. Today, industry codes only require that methane be vented away from facilities to prevent fire or explosion. Furthermore, while the proposed regs mandate that LNG “spills” be reported, there is no requirement whatsoever to report the intentional or accidental venting of methane gas. This is an area in which Governor Cuomo–who professes to be concerned about climate change–could lead the nation. The issue must not be ignored.
The proposed regs are deficient in several other ways too. Requirements remain vague on mandatory emergency training and responsibility for the purchase of equipment or personnel. This could leave first responders, who are often local volunteers, unprepared to deal with serous industrial catastrophes. The regulations also lack any solid requirement for financial security to ensure that taxpayers will not be on the hook for abandoned facilities. Furthermore, the regs lack a credible permit structure, guaranteeing no more than a miniscule one-time application fee of $1000 or less. This is completely inadequate to administer a program that requires perpetual monitoring and enforcement. In other deficiencies, an important provision allowing for unannounced inspection was deleted from the most recent revision and the deadline for filing written spill reports was extended from 48 hours to ten days.
These are all serious deficiencies indicating that New York remains unprepared to deal with the public safety and climate impacts of LNG.
Moreover, please click here: Thirty Days of Fracking Regs website by the incomparable Sandra Steingraber is an excellent source of talking points on DEC LNG rules.
The number of submittals made by us will show the strength of our movement and that citizens in New York State care about their health and environment. So please just do it and email your comment to DEC.
People’s Climate March: a Day to Remember
On Sunday, September 21st an estimated 400,000 citizens came together and marched through the streets of Manhattan to demand serious action from world leaders, who were meeting that week at the UN Climate Summit. Although there were a few politicians and celebrities in the ranks, the march truly lived up to its name and it was ordinary people from all walks of life who made the day special with their voices, their creativity and their passion to change the world for better. United for Action friends and families were part of the beautiful medley. Below are some of their experiences and thoughts about the march. We thank them for sharing their words and photos and are also grateful to photographers such as Erik McGregor and videographers Charlie Olson, John Duffy and the rest of the Environment TV crew who are sharing their amazing work. Continue reading…
P.S.62 will be the first net-zero energy school in New York City and one of the first of its kind worldwide. The 68,680-square-foot, two-story school will serve 444 pre-kindergarten through fifth grade students. When completed, the cutting-edge building will harvest as much energy from renewable on-site sources as it uses on an annual basis. More info and more beautiful renderings on the Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) website.
Our appreciation goes to Owen Crowley, who single-handedly filmed, edited (incorporating the speakers’ slides), and posted video of UFA’s Tankers & Turbines event. If you missed the event at Rutgers Church, you can view the various parts of the evening by clicking on the photos below. Please watch, share, and spread the word that we must get Governors Christie and Cuomo to veto Liberty Natural Gas’ deepwater port application.
1. Sean Dixon from Clean Ocean Action (see their Port Ambrose fact-sheet here) spoke to the audience about Liberty Natural Gas’ proposed port, how it would bring in tankers as long as the Empire State Building is tall, carrying explosive cargo among the shipping lanes of one of the busiest ports in the country. Read more of this post.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP, is the biggest trade deal in U.S. history, and the most secretive one as well. The anti-fracking community has been hearing about it for some time, because if what has been leaked is true, the TPP is an enormous threat to our efforts to stop the destruction being caused by oil and gas unconventional drilling. Read more…
I write with some embarrassment. I thought I knew everything there was to know about the horrors of fracking. After all, I’d been at the NY City Council meeting (along with Josh Fox) where the truth of what was facing us first came to light (Christine Quinn was against it then).I saw the rushes from Gasland on wrinkled bed sheets in loft spaces when we were all scrambling to get it together. I saw – and was blown away – by Gasland 2. I’ve been to countless rallies and meetings. I know about radon, failing well casings, SGEIS statements, methane flaring, silica dust, brine on roads, and polluted aquifer. So when I signed up to go on a “tour” of fracking sites in PA on July 27th, I almost felt foolish.
I knew nothing. Continue reading…
Minisink, NY is a beautiful community an hour and a half from NYC. Unfortunately it is directly in the path of the gas industry’s fracked gas infrastructure designs. They have sited a giant compressor station just a mile away from people’s homes. It isn’t fully running yet, but test emissions that the industry conducted already have caused horrible symptoms to many in the community. Ironically, many of the towns residents are responders who worked during 9/11 who have respiratory conditions and moved to Minisink for the healthy air and environment. The town is fighting with everything they’ve got to stop the compressor station but they need your help. Continued….
What is Fracking?
Hydraulic Fracturing or “Hydrofracking” is a toxic and hazardous process of natural gas extraction which has caused irreparable damage to the environment. It has caused sickness and death in humans and animals, and made farms, homes and large tracts of land uninhabitable. Read more…
More Information on Fracking in our RESOURCE SECTION
The Numbers around Fracking don’t add up:
Watch these hard-hitting presentations from our 2012 “Frackonomics” event on the microeconomics, macroeconomics and external costs of fracking:
- Frackonomics Pt 1 – Deborah Rogers
- Frackonomics Pt 2 – Jannette Barth
- Frackonomics Pt 3 – Al Appleton
- Frackonomics Pt 4 – Q and A
More than just the numbers, the human angle also evaluated:
A study presentation by Dr. Simona Perry who did case studies in affected areas that show industrial strength drilling rips communities apart. Essential viewing.
There are better alternatives:
These speakers at a Renew New York event talk about alternative heating technologies such as solar and biodiesel.
- The Boiler Dilemma Part 1, Miner Introduction
- The Boiler Dilemma Part 2, Duckworth Presentation
- The Boiler Dilemma Part 3, Kamen Presentation