Saturday, February 02, 2008

GREEN INITIATIVES...

Gas prices and global warming: two great reasons to think about how to “green” the ways we get around. Reducing the number of miles we drive alone helps lower our use of fossil fuels and reduces our carbon footprint; it also saves on the cost of gas and vehicle wear and tear, and helps reduce local air pollution and traffic congestion. Solutions? Carpooling and ridesharing; taking public transportation; walking and biking.
With Greenburgh’s “Green Your Miles” campaign, we hope to raise Greenburgh residents’ awareness about ways to save money and reduce their environmental impact while on the move. Information about some solutions can be found at:
· http://www.NuRide.com, a free and highly flexible online ridesharing service that offers rewards (such as gift certificates) for sharing rides, not just for commuting but for any reason
· http://www.GoLoco.org, a service that helps people and communities create their own personal public transportation network
· http://www.MetroPool.com, help with commuter alternatives including carpooling, vanpooling, and public transportation.
· And at http://www.greenburghny.com, click on “Save Energy” on the left of the home page, then check out the “Transportation” section.
An interview with MetroPool CEO John Lyons about ridesharing and other commuter alternatives can be seen currently on “The Energy Show” on Greenburgh cable channels 75 and 76.
So… “Green Your Miles,” save some money, and help the planet! Share your success stories in “greening your miles”; write pfeiner@greenburghny.com.

(Questions? Contact the Energy Conservation Coordinator at 993-1649.)

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but nuclear power is a great alternative to fossil fuels. We have to stop the NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) knee jerk respone. Until we all commit to less use of fossil fuels, we are in a bind. We (the US) are only 5%of the world's population, but we consume 25% of the world's energy. China and India are growing dramatically and they will not be deterred. We (the US) will become second class citizens of the world, not in my limited remaining life time, but within my children's and grandchildren's life times. Yes, conserve, but nuclear power is embraced around the world. Yes, do it safely. But NIMBY, (i.e. Indian Point) just doesn't cut it. Sorry, but there are risks in living and I accept this risk. It (Indian Point) was here before I moved into the Town. I knew what I was getting into.

Anonymous said...

More and more people are comfortable with nuclear power. Thankfully the "No Nukes" message had died out.

Anonymous said...

Whether one likes or dislikes nuclear power we have no alternative.
We have to have this source of power to survive here and throughout the USA.
Europe is putting up windmill farms to make more power but here in Westchester windmills are a no no,nuclear power is also a no no.
Has anyone else come up with an alternative.

feiner follies as usual said...

feiner creates alot of hot air - maybe that will help?

Merro said...

These are great initiatives, but we can add cycling to it. In the 1960's, more than 50% of children cycled to school and the obesity rate among them was 10%. Today, less than 10% of children cycle to school and the obesity rate is more than 50%. So, in addition to going green, we can kill two birds with one stone by also encouraging people to bicycle to stations (train and bus), shopping, etc (short distances, weather permitting).

However, we can't just ask people to bicycle unless we provide a safety environment for it. Bicycling on busy roads can be very dangerous. A 2006 report shows that 227 bicyclists were killed in New York City and nearly 3,500 were injured by cars between 1996 and 2003. Most of the fatal accidents were caused by poor driving or bicycle-riding behavior, including driver inattention and disregard for traffic signals. A new campaign recently launched by New York City officials aims to raise awareness of bicycle safety and prevent bicycle fatalities and injuries (The LOOK campaign).

AAA reports (Car & Travel Dec 2007)that LOOK was developed by an advertising agency, Publicis in Seattle, for the New York City Bicycle Safety Coalition - a partnership bewteen city agencies, bicycle advocacy groups and AAA. It encourages cars and bikes to share the road through advertisements on bus-stop shelters, taxi stops, gas stations and post cards around the city, and in magazine and radio announcements.

Well, the Town of Greenburgh may want to see if it is possible to make (where space is available) bike paths in the the town and encourage people to bicycle. That means, bicycle parking facilities at bus stands and shopping centers should be the norm (eventually of course). This is a huge responsibility for the town to recommend, as it involves alternation to infrastructure and safety. Of course, the town would not want to build infrastructure for bicycles that its citizens will not use. However, it is good to start on changing the culture at least and show drivers who pass through this town that we are asking them to recognize that bicyclists also have a right to share the road, and they should look at a bicycle as a mode of transport and be careful in sharing the road with them. At the safe time, the public should be warned not to bicycle unless they find it safe to do so. It is a long road, but I think, like you bicycling 300 miles, the journey starts with the first mile.

Eventually, just like Europe, we could add bicycling as a means of transport and save on gas, not pollute the environment and be healthier as well. Of course, Westchester has some great recreational paths for bicycling, just some of the best in the country I think.

Anonymous said...

Years ago there was a bus company that came thru the streets picking up passenger who were going to the station and then bring them back home.
What happened to that service?
If you want to save the air we breathe maybe this way of getting to and from the station should start up again.
JUST AN IDEA//////

Anonymous said...

The bus company stopped making money for its owners - so the service stopped.
The bus company might have asked for and gotten a subsidy from the taxpayers, but it didn't. If it had, people who walk to the station would be complaining about the higher taxes to subsidize the bus riders.
Get over it - this isn't Europe with short distances between places. This isn't the early 20th century either. Greenburg is the second LARGEST municipality in Westchester county - too bad we are so poorly represented by our public officials that we receive FAR less than a fair share of County services - including buses!
But, when you elect a Supervisor who made so many enemies while launching his career in the County Legislature, that's what you should expect.

Anonymous said...

Regarding nuclear power and the issues that drive Indian Point, I just had on Michel Lee,the Senior Policy Analyst for Promoting Health and Sustainable Energy (PHASE) and a member of the Steering Commitee of the Indian Point Safe Energy Coalition (IPSEC), www.IPSECinfo.org a coalition of over 70 public interest, public health and citizen groups which was formed in response of a flood of citizen concerns over the safety of Indian Point.

The Advocates was broadcasted on Wednesday at 12 noon on February 6,2008 on WVOX-AM.

It will be archived at my website
http://advocates-wvox.com. There is a lot more to Indian Point and its potential vulnerability, than terrotism. The leeching of radiation into ground water, the release of radioactive toxins and the cancer rate in the area should be of a concern to everyone. This site is not required by the NRC to be hardened because of intense and expensive Entergy lobbying, regarding additional expenses that they would incur. The 2000 Megawatts represents 10% if the current NY State usage. There are currently plans that could replace the loss of that wattage. But they have to be vetted and explored. Indian Point's proximity to our major metropolitan area should be a concern to everyone from Wall Street to Main Street.

Personally I am not, and never was an opponent to nuclear power. But I am open to the prevailing arguments from both sides of the "green" and "blue" sustainability and resiliency communities. I am currently working with officials of three of our largest Westchester municipalites on both the Sustainability Alliance and the promotion of pilot programs on solar energy.

This is a critcal public policy issue facing our community, and it cannot be bought off with empty platitudes from either side of the issue.

Richard J. Garfunkel

Anonymous said...

What ever system is in place to give us electricity,is a hazard to our health.
High tension wires and the drums[I don't know what you call it] that were added to the electric poles, all give us a form of cancer.
We cannot do without any of these things that are in place to give us electricity.
Many foreign countries are setting up windmill farms since they are in a worse position than many of us here in Westchester.
What are we waiting for,to start a study that will serve and be beneficial to our well being?
Whom ever lives or purchased a home near this plant knew ahead of time the risks that one would be taken
Until something better comes our way we have to stay with Indian point.
.

Anonymous said...

The town is so interested in problems concerning electricity that they put out ways to save the air and land arround us.
Why is it that Greenburgh has never taken a survey of how many people have died of cancer due to high tension wires and anything else affilliated with electricity.
All of these wires should have been put under ground by the electric and phone companies.
The cell phone antennas were also a problem,but they were put up and now reports are given to the public that constant use of cell phones give one brain tumors.
No one investigates the health risks but we are advised as not to use our vehicles for work or shopping.

Anonymous said...

For better or for worse I suggest you get out of the library or buy Yale Professor Charles Perrow's book "The Next Catastrophe," which talks about avoiding the big "hit." In other words limiting huge losses. Whether one justifies the statistical incidence of cancer from high tension wires, or cell phones or radiation, or even food, a major event at Indian Point would have calamatous consequences for 10's of millions. The key is hardening the site, or replacing the 2000 mgwts with alternate energy. Rationalizing the threat does not lessen it. Indian Point should be forced to harden its site! But their licenses end in 2012 and 2014, I believe, and a renewal on both will take their operation out into the 2030's. By the way the plant is old, the pipes are eroding and being cautious about safety is not a fool's paradise. All machines will eventually deteriorate and break.

Richard J. Garfunkel

Anonymous said...

Dear Richard you give us allthe bad features of Indian POint,but you never explain what we could use in it's place.
Solar energy.
Have you studied how much it would cost a home to install solar panels ?
Yes we would save some money but to pay for the installation it will take more than twenty yrs.and then after we would see some savings.
All in all I think this would be a bad investment.
So what say you Mr. Garfunkel.

Anonymous said...

And whar does Mr. Garfunkel propose we do with the extremely toxic materials that are necessary for solar panels to work.
Gallium arsenide, a substance just a bit less toxic than plutonium, is the working part of a solar panel. It becomes worn out, but no less toxic, after less than 20 years. Disposing of old, worn out solar panels almost as difficult as disposing of old reactor rods...

Anonymous said...

It isn't only solar and the problem the commnunity faces is the breakdown of an old plant. If one is so curious go into some of the sites www.nirs.org and www.IPSECinfo.org. Personally, as I said earlier, I have no axe to grind with nuclear energy. I certainly can understand both the concern of a shortfall in available power, or a surge in the price. I want neither. But the argument is how to protect the plant or even upgrade it. The NRC does not want to force Entergy Nuclear to do more to protect the site, and there seems to be considerable problems with aging, that has resulted in hidden cracking and wearing of pipes. If the leeching of radiation into ground water, and dispersal of toxins into the air are worth "your" price, so be it for you. Others eventually have to decide that question for themselves.

The problem is not one of philosophy, but the willpower to confront the issue. I am not living in fear here. My children are grown, live far away and I'll take my chances with the conditions. But I can learn, and what I have learned is that these critics are not loonies or the certifiably insane. Don't be so snide and convinced that only so-called "tree-huggers" are concerned with the plant's future. With regards to possible evacuation:

James Lee Witt, the former director of FEMA, and his associates were commissioned to write a report on Indian Point by then Governor Pataki. In their 500-page report, which was released in 2003, Witt concluded that the Indian Point emergency evacuation plan was incredibly flawed would not protect the public.

“I think it is insane to have a three unit reactor on the Hudson River in Westchester County, 40 miles from Times Square, 20 miles from the Bronx. And if you describe that 50 mile circle…you’ve got 21 million people.” Robert Ryan, Director of the Office of State programs for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 1979 sworn testimony.

“If there is a major event at Indian Point we will be totally overwhelmed and obviously of little help to the community.” Dr. Stephen Grayson, associate director of the emergency department at Northern Westchester Hospital Center at a January 2003 forum in Chappaqua.

“I did drills up at Indian Point as a police officer. I know how important it is to close it down. When those whistles go off, and it’s not a drill, all hell’s going to break loose.” Kevin Morgan, retired Greenburgh police detective.

Therefore with the safety issue a consideration for all who live here, the next problem is the replacement of the current wattage without more pollution and green house emissions.

My concern as the host of "The Advocates" is to expose rational opinion. We did have callers who, like Milt Hoffman, had legitimate concerns about the shortfall in power. For you, and the 54% of Westchester, the closure must come with viable alternatives.

Richard J. Garfunkel

Anonymous said...

Put the 'parkland'that was purchesed on Taxter road to work for the benefit of those who are paying for it's purchase.
We need more electric power why not make this parcel into a windmill farm.
The way it is now it will never be used by the public as a park.
There is plenty of space here to look at the future needs of many communities.