Saturday, April 25, 2015

NYS Senator Stands Up for Climate Science in the Face of Ignorance

By David Kowalski .

Senator Brad Hoylman, ranking member of the NY State Conservation Committee, called out the Senate GOP for ignoring the term 'climate change' in their Earth Day Resolution.

Speaking in the senate chambers, he implored the legislative body that "we be mindful as public policy makers of the solemn responsibility to be good stewards of our planet."

Holyman said “There is an oversight in the resolution, which I feel obligated to point out, that there is no mention of climate change. The two words 'climate change' do not appear in the resolution.”

“It has to be [an oversight]. This is Earth Day, not Flat Earth Day. And the science, Mr. president, is clear.”   

Holyman cited scientific facts drawn from reports from the International Panel on Climate Change and cited by the NY City panel on Climate Change: rising temperatures, increasing precipitation, heat waves, extreme weather, sea level rise, and flooding of New York City, the most densely populated city on Earth.

“We should be mindful of the economic impact of climate change. With extreme weather events predicted to increase, we have to be prepared for economic impacts including infrastructure damage, rebuilding costs. The direct costs of Superstorm Sandy alone was $71.4 Billion,” he said.

“We are dooming our children’s future unless we act now.”

“Now the Peoples Climate March … 350,000 people attended it. It was in my district less than a year ago, but what have we done to address it?"

"Where is NY State’s Climate Action Plan? Who’s in charge of Climate Change in NY State? Can you name that person? I can’t.”

Hoylman concluded, “Mr. President, I support this [Earth Day] Resolution, but urge my colleagues, as we move forward in this legislative session, to take decisive steps to reverse global warming and climate change."

Senator Hoylman's full testimony delivered in the senate chambers can be viewed in a video here.

The Earth Day Resolution passed by the Senate GOP omitted the phrase “climate change” because some legislators objected to the words, according to a Capital New York report.

Republican Senator John DeFrancisco said it was a "politically correct term" and cast doubt on the notion the Earth was warming because his city saw record cold this winter.

“It was global warming a few years ago, and I can attest, being from Syracuse, New York, that the globe wasn't warming around Syracuse this winter. So by putting a label to good environmental practices is a very risky thing and that's why [climate change] was not put in this resolution,”  DeFrancisco said.

Buffalo News editorial cartoon by Pulitzer-Prize Winner Adam Zyglis

Senator DeFrancisco is ignorant of the fact that global warming is not simply evaluated by determining the temperature in his home district of Syracuse NY.

Global warming is assessed by measuring temperatures at numerous locations on land around the world as well as in the oceans that make up more than 70 percent of Earth’s surface. Measurements are made over time and the global average temperature is determined.

So, while it was brutally cold this winter in Syracuse, across NY state and elsewhere in the Eastern U.S., most all other regions on land and in oceans around planet Earth showed above average warming according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Results of NOAA's global temperature analysis is displayed on a world map for the month of January (click here) and February (below).

Saturday, April 18, 2015

EVENTS: Buffalo's Outer Harbor - Community Vision and Future

EVERYBODY’S WATERFRONT

Buffalo’s Outer Harbor - Lectures, Public Forums & Events
April - May 2015

Buffalo’s Outer Harbor on Lake Erie has been discussed and hotly debated this past year, initiated by a new planning effort by the Erie Canal Harbor Development Corporation. It is time to have an ongoing conversation about this place:  What is the future for this waterfront land? What is the community’s vision for the Lake Erie Waterfront?  

A series of lectures, public forums and events will be held in April and May to further this conversation.

Please attend one or more of these events. Your participation and voice are important. 

IP REPORTS:  BUFFALO’S OUTER HARBOR 4/15
Wednesday, April 15, 2015  Presentation by Dan Telvock with panel respondents. Sponsored by the Investigative Post
7:00pm at Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, 641 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo
http://www.investigativepost.org/events/ for $10 tickets

THE LAKE ERIE COMMONS:
THE OUTER HARBOR AND THE PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE 4/22
Wednesday, April 22, 2015  Presentation by Jim Olsen, President of FLOW, with panel respondents.
FLOW is an organization seeking protection of the Great Lakes through Public Trust.
Sponsored by the WNY Environmental Alliance; http://www.growwny.org/wnyea
Tifft Nature Preserve, Fuhrman Blvd, Buffalo [ MAP ]
5:30pm Green Drinks and 7:00pm Lecture

WHOSE OUTER HARBOR?  4/30
Thursday, April 30, 2015  Film by Robert Reich “Inequality for All” and discussion of environmental justice issues on the Outer Harbor.  Sponsored by Buffalo State Center for Economic and Policy Studies and Burchfield Penny Art Center 
7:00pm at Burchfield Penny Art Center, 1300 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14222

EVERYBODY’S WATERFRONT: BENEFITS OF PARKS AND OPEN SPACE TO CITIES AND REGIONS  5/6
Wednesday, May 6, 2015  Peter Harnik, Trust for Public Land, who will discuss the economic, health, environmental, cultural and social benefits of parks and open space. Sponsored by 21st Century Park on the Outer Harbor
6:00pm at the Burchfield Penny Art Center, 1300 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14222

FUN FUNDRAISER: “SKYRIDE BUFFALO”  5/30
Saturday, May 30. The annual “Skyride Buffalo,” sponsored by GOBike, is a fundraising bicycle tour of historic locations, a scenic tour over the Skyway, and  highlights the past, present and future of bicycling in Buffalo. Ride followed by a celebration at the Outer Harbor.  

Check-in begins at 7:00am at Buffalo’s Outer Harbor. We ride at 9am.
http://skyridebuffalo.org/

Friday, April 17, 2015

Earth Day Lecture & Green Drinks at Tifft Nature Preserve

Join the WNYEA on Earth Day to Celebrate 

THE LAKE ERIE COMMONS: 
The Outer Harbor and the Public Trust Doctrine

Wednesday, April 22nd
Jim Olsen, President of FLOW
For Love of Water
FLOW is an organization seeking protection of
the Great Lakes through Public Trust

Lecture starts at 7:00pm at Tifft Nature Preserve [MAP]

Green Drinks networking with GreenWorks Buffalo Niagara 
and Tifft guided tours begin at 5:30pm


Register for the event at the WNYEA website: Click Here


Earth Day Talk: Our Warming Planet, Climate Change and Smart Solutions


Our Warming Planet, Climate Change and Smart Solutions
Tuesday, April 21 at 7:00pm

The presenter will talk about how he became interested in these topics, the scientific evidence for human-caused global warming, and some of the impacts of climate change. He will wrap up with smart solutions to curb warming and climate change, and what people can do to help preserve the vital environment of our planet.

David Kowalski is a retired research professor and a member of the Union of Concerned Scientists. He is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Sierra Club Niagara Group and the Conservation Committee of the local chapter of the Adirondack Mountain Club.

 Free and Open to the Public

REGISTER by Phone: 716-689-4922
LOCATION: Audubon Library, 350 John James Audubon Parkway, Amherst, NY [MAP]


SEMINAR: Climate Change and Food Security

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Presentation: Geothermal Heating and Cooling - April 14


Geothermal Heating and Cooling: the Third Leg of the Renewable Stool
Tuesday, April 14 at 7:00pm

This lecture will cover how Geothermal Heat Pumps fit with wind and solar energy and the policy changes needed to make "net-zero" and "100% renewable" a reality in New York State.

Bill Nowak is the Executive Director of NY-GEO, the trade organization for geothermal heating and cooling installers, distributors and industry participants in NY State. He is also active with the Sierra Club Niagara Group Energy Committee and is the lead organizer of the Club's Climate and Clean Energy Writer's Group.
Free and Open to the Public

REGISTER by Phone: 716-689-4922
LOCATION: Audubon Library, 350 John James Audubon Parkway, Amherst, NY [MAP]

Monday, April 13, 2015

Climate Change NEWS

‘An Era Of Extreme Weather': Report Shows Big Weather Events Cost U.S. $19 Billion In 2014
Those events — which included historic drought, flooding, and storms — affected 35 states in total. In the last four years, the report found, extreme weather events across the United States caused 1,286 fatalities and $227 billion in economic losses across 44 states.
Read the article at Think Progress


California’s Next Megadrought Has Already Begun
As California limps through another nearly rain-free rainy season, the state is taking increasingly bold action to save water.
Article by Eric Holthaus in Slate

  Editorial cartoon by Adam Zyglis in The Buffalo News

The Number of Sea Lions Washing Up on Californian Shores Is Higher Than Ever
Rising sea temperatures mean less food for the mammals.
Report in TIME


Church Should Lead, Not Follow on Climate Justice
As people of faith, we are called to be the rock of the climate justice movement, the solid rock of hope that remains strong on the darkest days. 
Article by Tim DeChristopher in the Harvard Divinity Bulletin


Energy Bombshell: CO2 Emissions Stabilized in 2014
Solar, wind and other renewables are making such a big difference in greenhouse gas emissions worldwide that global emissions from the energy sector flatlined during a time of economic growth for the first time in 40 years.
Read the article at Climate Central


This conservative group is tired of being accused of climate denial — and is fighting back
Facing a loss of high-profile corporate sponsors, a conservative state-level policy group — the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) — threatened action in recent weeks against activist groups that accuse it of denying climate change.
Report in the Washington Post


What will happen after people stop ignoring the evidence on climate change
It’s possible that we’re living through a moment that will later be remembered as a key marker in the decline of climate change doubt as a whole.
Article in the Washington Post

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Volunteer for RIVERKEEPER Spring 'Shoreline Sweep'


WHEN: Saturday, April 25 from 10AM to 12PM

Riverkeeper organizes the largest shoreline cleanup in Buffalo Niagara with over 1,500 volunteers at 40 waterfront sites throughout Western New York. This event re-connects people to their greatest natural asset, fresh water.

This is your opportunity to join the effort to protect and revitalize our waterways by cleaning up shoreline trash that can harm fish and wildlife!

Volunteer Registration: CLICK HERE to register online for one of 40 Sites for the Spring Shoreline Sweep. On the morning of the cleanup, volunteers will meet the Site Captain at the designated meeting place at their site.

A Volunteer Appreciation Party will be held at the Marcy Casino in Delaware Park after the cleanup from 12pm to 2:30pm. Sign up for a ticket when you Register for the cleanup.

Questions? Contact Jarrett Steffen by email at jsteffen@bnriverkeeper.org or by phone at 716-852-7483 ext. 19.

Sierra Club Awards to be Presented at Annual Dinner

THE SIERRA CLUB-NIAGARA GROUP

ANNUAL AWARDS DINNER
Thursday, April 30, 2015

 OPENING TALK
Learn about the imperative of “Just Transitions” from Erin Heaney, Executive Director of the Clean Air Coalition. We know we must move off fossil fuels to address climate change, but this transition can impact workers and communities unfairly. Whose responsibility is it to address the injustice?

SIERRA CLUB AWARDS 2015


The Blake Reeves Award to the Buffalo Public Schools
 In recognition of the Solar Power Purchase Agreement
Solar panels will be installed at 20 Buffalo Public Schools to provide clean electrical power. We particularly recognize Paul McDonnell, Director of Facilities Planning Design and Construction, Jason McCarthy of the School Board, and Richard Steinberg, a Sierra Club Member.

Bruce Kershner Award to Charley Bowman
For leadership in working with many climate change issues and his concerns for justice and peace being central to the mission of climate justice.

AWARDS DINNER

LOCATION: My Tomato Pie Restaurant, 3085 Sheridan Dr., Amherst (Northtown Plaza between Alberta Dr. and Niagara Falls Blvd. - Map)

TIME: Begins at 5:45pm -- Dinner buffet starts at 6:30pm and includes vegetarian options.

COST: $25 per person including tax and gratuity.
 
Please RSVP by April 27th. You can either e-mail sierraclubangela@gmail.com  or call Larry at 716-634-8715.   Hope to see you there!