ON this evening Farm Hour on WIOX we will be hearing from Catskill Mountainkeeper Agriculture Coordinator EMILY DEANS. Emily was in Albany last week at the American Farmland Trust No Farms No Food Rally and she will be calling in to tell us about her day at the Capital.
And later in the hour, Farmer Wes Hannah, organizer for the National Young Farmers Coalition will be calling in to talk about the future of farming. NYFC published a comprehensive report about the obstacles facing young beginning farmers and creative solutions for the future, download at Building a Future With Farmers: Challenges Faced by Young, American Farmers and a National Strategy to Help
BY Celeste Katz
Michelle Williams, who parlayed a role on the ’90′s hit show “Dawson’s Creek” into a film career that’s ranged from turns in “Brokeback Mountain” to “My Week With Marilyn,” is the voice of a new anti-hydrofracking radio campaign in New York’s Southern Tier.
The spot, which debuted today in the Binghamton market, is financed by NY SAFE and Catskill Mountainkeeper. The fracking debate is heating up amid reports that the Cuomo administration is considering allowing limited gas drilling.
Arguing that hydrofracking presents a serious danger to water supplies, Williams — who is working with “Gasland” filmmaker Josh Fox and many other activists on the project — says, “In New York State, we’ve been good stewards of the land. Our water resources are in great shape, and we need them to stay that way — forever. As a mother, I want to pass on a beautiful and healthy New York to my daughter, and to the next generation.”
Said Fox, whose video “The Sky Is Pink” focuses on the fracking debate here in New York, “As the risks of contamination from fracking continue to come to light, more and more New Yorkers are saying it’s just not worth it. The science is clear — it’s not a question of whether our drinking water could be polluted, it’s a question of when. Six percent of these wells fail as soon as they’re drilled, so toxins can seep out immediately. And with the potential for tens of thousands of wells in New York, six percent is a lot of failure. I just don’t think Gov. Cuomo wants that on his record — I think he will make the better choice.”
Click here for the entire article
But First We Need to Stop It
Mark Z. Jacobson, director of Stanford’s Atmosphere/Energy Program mesmerized hundreds of Mountainkeeper supporters at last Saturday’s Barnfest with a doable plan to forgo fossil fuels and convert the globe to sustainable renewable energy by 2030.
Based on the findings of the research he did with Mark A. Delucchi, UC-Davis researcher, he said, “there are no technological or economic barriers to converting the entire world to clean, renewable energy sources. It is a question of whether we have the societal and political will.”
Jacobson’s message is that we can do renewables now. We don’t have to wait. They are efficient, economically feasible and will ultimately cost us no more than what we are currently paying.
The plan proposes a world run largely on electricity with wind and solar power contributing 90% of all needed energy and the balance of energy supplied by geothermal, hydroelectric, wave and tidal power. It would be paid for by a 30 percent reduction in world energy demand by converting combustion processes to less expensive electrical or hydrogen fuel cell processes, plus a huge savings from reducing the human death toll due to air pollution, thus make the costs of the plan relatively similar to what we pay today.
The biggest challenges that face the large-scale implementation of renewable energy are the variability of wind and solar, the specialized elements needed to build turbines, solar collectors and other equipment and the footprint of the wind turbines and solar devices. But Jacobson said that all of these hurdles can be overcome.
Of course, Jacobson admitted the changeover to renewable energy would involve a large scale transformation and “would require an effort comparable to the Apollo moon project or constructing the interstate highway system.” But he left us with hope that there is a way forward without even having to go to new technologies. For more detailed information on Mark Z. Jacobson’s work, click here.
(TO SEE MORE GREAT PHOTOS FROM BARNFEST VISIT OUR FACEBOOK PAGE HERE)
But our first order of business is to convince our government officials that natural gas is a bridge fuel to nowhere and there is no reason not to move aggressively to renewables right now. Please join us to send this message at the Stop the Frack Attack Rally on July 28, 2012 at the U.S. Capital in Washington, D.C., where people from all over the country will gather to tell Congress, the President and the world to end the rush to drill and STOP THE FRACK ATTACK. We are pleased to announce that the following 14 people have been chosen to speak at the Stop the Frack Attack Rally! They are a group of impacted community members and environmental activists who are on the front lines of this nationally important issue.
1.) Bill McKibben (350.org)
2.) Allison Chin (Sierra Club)
3.) Josh Fox (Gasland)
4.) Calvin Tillman (Former Mayor of Dish, Texas)
5.) Laura Amos (Affected Community Member, CO)
6.) John Fenton (Affected Community Member, WY)
7.) Kari Matsko (Affected Community Member, OH)
8.) Dayne Pratzky (Aka,”Frackman”, Australia)
9.) Lori New Breast (Affected Community Member, MT)
11.) Mike Tidwell (CCAN)
12.) Jameson Lisak and Kelly Humphreys ( Affected Youth from PA and WV)
13.) Dr Catherine Thomasson (Physicians for Social Responsibility )
14.) Doug Shields (former member of the Pittsburgh City Council)
Catskill Mountainkeeper is sponsoring a bus to the rally in Washington, DC on Saturday, July 28th — click here to register for the bus
Departs: Liberty Elks Lodge Parking Lot at 6:00am
Returns: Liberty Elks Lodge Parking Lot at 12:00am (midnight)***
Visit the StopTheFrackAttack.org website for more information.
By Ramit Plushnick-Masti
Associated Press, 7/12/12
HOUSTON — A Texas judge has ruled that the atmosphere and air must be protected for public use, just like water, which could help attorneys tasked with arguing climate change lawsuits designed to force states to cut emissions.
The written ruling, issued in a letter Monday by Texas District Court Judge Gisela Triana, shot down arguments by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality that only water is a “public trust,” a doctrine that dates to the Roman Empire stating a government must protect certain resources — usually water, sometimes wildlife — for the common good.
Adam Abrams, one of the attorneys arguing the case against TCEQ, said Triana’s ruling could be used as a persuasive argument in lawsuits pending in 11 other states.
In Texas, though, a ruling to protect air and the atmosphere has added significance. Republican Gov. Rick Perry is one of the most vocal opponents against widely accepted scientific research that fossil fuel emissions are causing global warming. And the state has refused to regulate greenhouse gases, forcing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to work directly with industries to ensure they comply with federal law. Read more…..
7/12/12, Times Herald-Record
ELDRED — Add another Sullivan County town to those that have banned gas drilling. The Town of Highland on Tuesday became the fourth town in the county to ban high impact industrial uses such as the horizontal natural gas extraction method of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking.” Its Town Board voted 5-0 for a such a ban.
Highland, which borders the Delaware River, joined its neighbors to the north, Tusten and Bethel, and its southern neighbor, Lumberland, to change its zoning for the ban. The votes were unanimous in all four towns.
The Highland move is significant because it comes before the state finally decides whether fracking can proceed, and what the regulations would be if it’s allowed.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Department of Environmental Commissioner Joe Martens have repeatedly said that a town’s position on fracking will matter when — or if — the state determines where drilling permits will be issued. Read more……
Catskill Mountainkeeper is excited to announce that three time Academy Award nominated actress, fracking activist and public health advocate Debra Winger will host Barnfest 2012 at The Hills Country Resort in Callicoon Center on Saturday July 14, 2012 from 3pm to 7pm.
Our Keynote Speaker is world renowned Stanford University Professor Mark Z. Jacobson whose pioneering research has helped us to understand better severe atmospheric problems, such as air pollution and global warming, and develop and analyze large-scale clean energy solutions to them.
Admission and beverages at Barnfest are FREE.
Incredible local food will be available for purchase and there will be an art auction, penny social and other fun activities for the entire family including incredible live musical perfomances including Bethany and Rufus and the Raddyos.
BARNFEST IS RAIN OR SHINE
Last year in torrential downpoars more than 500 people celebrated with us including Mountainkeeper Board Member Mark Ruffalo and his wife Sunrise, renowned food advocate Fred Kirschenmann (Stonewall Farms), and best selling author Anna Lappe (Diet for a Hot Planet).