I was so excited to see birds starting to use the new feeders we put up in our new backyard. At first it was just sparrows and starlings with some mourning doves eating the seeds that fell on the ground. Then I spotted gorgeous House Finches!
I will record all of these birds as part of the Great Backyard Bird Count, which is happening now through 2/17! Take a look in your yard or nearby park for at least 15 minutes and count the birds you see in that period of time. This is a great activity for the whole family, kids, cats, etc.
The data from YOU citizen scientists is used by REAL scientists to understand where and how many species of birds there are in a specific place at a specific time – this weekend! You can watch all this data being submitted in real time on the GBBC website.
Birds to look out for in Brooklyn: Pigeons, Starlings, Sparrows, House Finches, Cardinals, Blue Jays, Red Bellied Woodpeckers, Down Woodpeckers, Robins, Red Tailed Hawks, Mourning Doves, Juncos, Seagulls, Cooper’s Hawks, Peregrine Falcons, Kestrels, Snowy Owls (for real!)
Last year I made this video with the house finches that lived on our fire escape before our landlord flipped out about the bird feeder…Maybe they followed us to our new home.
If the title of this post didn’t turn you away, rejoice, dear reader! Poop isn’t just a funny word, it’s also useful…for science.
Right in our own backyard, Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant is turning the organic waste from thousands of New Yorkers into natural gas. Ok, jokester, we don’t mean that kind of gas. We’re talking about renewable natural gas that National Grid will use to heat spaces like your own apartment. Continue reading →
We bought over 1000 white christmas lights to decorate our Holiday Market and we hope to use them for a long time. When they finally die and we recycle them, they may end up in Shijiao, China, the “Christmas Light Recycling Capital of the World.” This interesting video by Adam Minter, of the blog Shanghai Scrap, shows how the process works in order to recover valuable components like copper and insulation. In the USA this insulation would end up in a landfill, but in China it is reused as slipper soles.
I hate the term conspiracy theory. It irks me. Often valid ideas get this moniker, as well as ideas that clearly deserve the term. That said, if Joe Blow murders someone, he is a murderer. If Joe Blow and Joe Shmo decide to murder someone, that is called conspiracy murder. See how that works? If more than one person conspires to do someting illegal, it becomes a conspiracy. Now when most of the city council conspires against the will of the people of New York (in this case – Greenpoint, Brooklyn) – what shall we call that? Continue reading →
Tomorrow is the 2nd to last public hearing on Greenpoint Landing and 77 Commercial St. The City Planning Commission will cast a vote on the project.
Residents will be able to sign up to speak for 3 minutes each to voice opinions and concerns.
The developer has approval to build 300 market-rate apartments in a 15-story tower at 77 Commercial Street, but still needs approval for necessary zoning modifications in order to build an additional 500 units.
Greenpoint Landing would add 700 units as well as a new public school to the waterfront. The towers are currently above the height allowed by current zoning laws.
Controversy has arisen with regards to the affordable housing units in the building, de-funding of the park project, as well as additional population increases in the neighborhood, and the strain that increase will cause on public transit.
The local organization, Save Greenpoint, is fighting agains the towers, arguing that the development of Greenpoint Landing and 77 Commercial St will unearth harmful toxic chemicals into the local environment. They warn that residents will be exposed to harmful VOC’s from excavation for 3 years, impacting even indoor air quality.
They are still collecting signatures on this petition, to urge Governor Cuomo and the state to order a comprehensive Environmental Assessment of the redeveloped area before construction begins.
Where: Spector Hall, 22 Reade St
When: 10/9 at 10am
Note: From Kim Mason of Save Greenpoint: “If people cannot attend the meeting, they should write letters to Amanda Burden, the Director of City Planning. Her email is aburden [at] planning [dot] nyc [dot] gov.
Interested in how you can help make Greenpoint more, well…green? Join the community on 9/25 to get involved in the Greenpoint Community Environmental Fund, a $19.5 million dollar grant program that will be accepting proposals to improve the Greenpoint environment this Fall.
The $19,500,000 was obtained by the State of New York in a settlement with ExxonMobil in 2011, which required the company to clean up the oil and related environmental contamination that it caused during the Greenpoint Oil Spill. It is the largest single payment of its kind in New York history.
In the late 1970s, oil spills from ExxonMobil’s Greenpoint refinery and storage facility were discovered seeping into Newtown Creek, creating a plume of oil on the water’s surface. Some of this oil dissolved in the groundwater and contaminated surrounding soil. It is estimated that at least 17 million gallons of oil were released underneath Greenpoint, leaving at least 55 acres contaminated.
Improvements will be geared towards local environmental issues such as water quality, groundwater, open space, reduction of toxic pollution, and air quality. The settlement only covers land clean up, since the creek itself is a Superfund site and is therefore being handled by the Federal government.
More info is available from the Office of the Attorney General.
The meeting will take place at Warsaw (261 Driggs Ave) at 6:30pm.
Joe Lentol shared this document on facebook this week. There is a sewer to be installed on behalf of ExxonMobil on Monitor St between Greenpoint Ave and Calyer St in Greenpoint. Construction is tentatively planned between 9/16/13 and 12/20/13 Monday- Friday between 7am-6pm.
The sewer has been approved by DEP and its construction may allow for future installation of a stormwater management system located near ExxonMobil Greenpoint Petroleum Remediation Project.
If you have any questions contact:
Community Liason ExxonMobil
Steve P. Trifiletti
(Sponsored) At Greenpointers, we are passionate about promoting local environmental sustainability, so when we saw National Grid’s ‘B’ Green Challenge, which awards local businesses for becoming more energy efficient, it was important that we help spread the word to local Greenpoint and North Brooklyn businesses.
There are so many simple and easy ways to make your business more energy efficient and the great part is, it will help your business to save money – and win prizes!
National Grid has teamed up with Barclays Center and the Brooklyn Nets in order to promote energy efficiency among small businesses in Brooklyn and a new winning business is named each month.
By participating in the ‘B’ Green Challenge and letting them know the steps you have taken to become a greener business, you have a chance to also win a lot of awesome prizes, like tickets to Nets games or any event at the new Barclays Center, a signed Deron Williams basketball and a signed Joe Johnson poster!
We were recently invited to the award ceremony at Brooklyn Legal Services, which recently won the ‘B’ Green Challenge by doing things like sealing air leaks around windows and repairing their roof, improvements which had a 20% reduction in their energy costs.
It was a special award for Brooklyn Legal Services because they have been working with local organizations toward the construction of green affordable housing and provide free legal services to low-income residents, community groups and non-profit organizations of Brooklyn for over 45 years. Paul J. Acinapure, Esq. spoke about why the award was such an honor for Brooklyn legal Services:
It is particularly meaningful to us to get a green or sustainable recognition because we represent individual and community based organizations through Brooklyn that are local non-for profits that create affordable housing, run day care centers, run healthcare centers. We’ve represented them for decades in terms of doing their legal work in connection with greening and sustainability. In 2008 we created a green building law and justice project for those community organizations that we represent that are committed to greening and sustainability in the work that they do in their neighborhoods.
Now it’s your turn to make your business more energy efficient!
To participate in National Grid’s ‘B’ Green Challenge Register here: barclayscenter.com/bgreenchallenge. The first 100 businesses to register for the Challenge will receive a free do-it-yourself energy efficient item, a programmable thermostat, pipe insulation or weather stripping.
The winning business receives tickets to a Nets game or Barclay’s Center event, autographed Nets memorabilia, a plaque and recognition on Barclayscenter.com.