Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Foul stench and falling ash plague area from debris from Sandy


Neighbors say a foul stench and falling ash have plagued their area since the local landfill began burning debris from Sandy

By Greg Cergol
Tuesday, Dec 18, 2012  |  Updated 9:49 PM EST

NBC 4 New York

Debris from Sandy is raising a possible health concern on Long Island, where the material is being burned and setting off worries that residents are breathing in unsafe air. Greg Cergol reports.

Residents living around a 500-acre landfill in Suffolk County have demanded an end to the burning of downed trees and branches from Sandy.

According to lifelong Yaphank resident Kathleen Scheibel, a foul stench and falling ash have plagued her neighborhood a mile and a quarter from the landfill since the burning began last month.

"It's a wood-burning smell tinged with garbage," Scheibel said. "The other day, I was driving home and I thought it was snowing. To think we're breathing this in -- it's hard to swallow."

Four so-called fire boxes have been burning storm debris 24 hours a day since early November, according to Brookhaven town officials. The debris is being trucked to the landfill from Brookhaven and at least four other towns as part of an emergency plan implemented by the town, Suffolk County and New York's Department of Environmental Conservation.

But according to activist Adrienne Esposito of the Citizens Campaign for the Environment, the plan has sickened some and put everyone in the surrounding communities at risk.

"We don't want to solve the debris problem by creating a public health threat," said Esposito.

In response to the community's concerns, Suffolk county has installed three air monitoring systems around the landfill.

"Since we have begun the monitoring, particulate levels are well below the allowable limit," said a spokesperson for Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone.

Brookhaven's new town supervisor is monitoring the air quality findings and deciding whether to halt the burning. According to Edward Romaine, the burning began before he took office last month.

"I know we have a problem with debris, but the public's health and safety comes first," said Romaine.

Romaine has ordered that other Long Island towns halt the transfer of storm debris to the Brookhaven landfill. Stopping the burning could create a bigger regional problem: Trucking the debris off Long Island would be very expensive, Romaine said. Mulching or chipping the debris could take decades.

In fact, the supervisor said, Brookhaven has only just completed the mulching of debris from Hurricane Gloria, 27 years ago.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

FW: Demand Removal of Air Quality Destructors Today!

From: Tara Bono []
Sent: Wednesday, December 12, 2012 2:49 PM
To: undisclosed-recipients:
Subject: Demand Removal of Air Quality Destructors Today!


Citizens Campaign for the Environment
Action Alert

URGENT: Call TODAY, Demand Removal of Air Quality Destructors at the Brookhaven Landfill

Four Incinerators Located at the Brookhaven Landfill are Polluting Our  Air and Causing Public Health Concerns

If you think you have recently seen it rain ash or snow at night in Brookhaven, you are not far from wrong.  Massive brush burning at Brookhaven Landfill is the source.

FEMA has provided Suffolk County with 4 Air Curtain Destructors (AKA Air Quality Destroyers).  These small but powerful incinerators are here to burn wood and vegetated debris from Sandy.  But they produce fine particulate matter that is spreading over Brookhaven residents. Fine particulate matter causes damage to our lungs, heart and respiratory systems.

They need to be shut down and removed - we need your help today!

Monitoring results from a November EPA pilot program in Brooklyn, at a location that used one of these incinerators, shows one unit can produce 24.24 micrograms of fine particulate matter. Four units in one location could far exceed the EPA’s health-based standard for fine particles! This is unacceptable, especially in a community that has already been overburdened by Long Island’s waste management crisis.


Take Action Now!
Make four quick phone calls to critical leaders on the Federal, State, County, and Town levels and demand that the incinerators be shut down immediately. Your phone calls are very important, and every single one counts. Your help is urgently needed today!

o   Congressman Tim Bishop: (631) 289-6500

o   DEC Regional Director Peter Scully: (631) 444-0345

o   Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone: (631) 853-4000

o   Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine: (631) 451-9100

Phone call tips:

  1. State your name and address.
  2. Tell them how incinerators at Brookhaven Landfill are destroying air quality and making people sick!
  3. Demand that they take action immediately to remove the incinerators.

And, please remember to send us a quick email letting us know you took action and how it went.

Thank you for taking action. Together we make a difference!


Your Friends at CCE

Citizens Campaign for the Environment
225A Main Street
Farmingdale, NY 11735
Phone: 516-390-7150 | Fax: 516-390-7160
6 Regional Offices in New York and Connecticut

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Tara Bono
Program Coordinator
Citizens Campaign for the Environment
225a Main Street, Farmingdale, NY 11735
(516) 390-7150
“Start with one step. However small, the first step is hardest of all.”

Saturday, December 1, 2012

New Old Inlet Information Meeting

                                   Join in on an exchange of perspectives
                                      regarding the breach at Old Inlet   

                                         Saturday, Dec. 1 at 1:20 pm      
                                      Bellport Village Community Center   
                                                4 Bell Street             
                                             Bellport, NY 11713           

                                               Guest Speakers             

                                     Christopher Soller,  Superintendent  
                                        Fire Island National Seashore     

                                   Mr. Soller will  provide a brief update
                                   of the Seashore's involvement in the   
                                   implementation of a 1997 multi-agency  
                                   Breach Contingency Plan (BCP). This    
                                   plan calls for the immediate filling of
                                   breaches on Fire Island which do not   
                                   occur in federally-designated          
                                   wilderness. For a breach within the    
                                   Otis Pike Fire Island High Dune        
                                   Wilderness, a more conservative        
                                   response is prescribed,and includes    
                                   inter-agency monitoring of the behavior
                                   of the breach, while initially allowing
                                   it to close naturally. If the breach is
                                   determined to have adverse impacts on  
                                   water levels in surrounding            
                                   communities, it will be closed         
                                   immediately. Supt. Soller will share   
                                   data gathered by the National Park     
                                   Service and partner agencies at the    
                                   breach at Old Inlet. FINS              

                                    Kevin McAllister, President, Peconic  

                                   Mr. McAllister, president of Peconic   
                                   Baykeepers, will provide a perspective
                                   with regard to the ecological          
                                   advantages of additional sustained flow
                                   between the ocean and Great South Bay.
                                   Peconic Baykeeper is the only          
                                   independent not-for-profit advocate    
                                   solely dedicated to the protection and
                                   improvement of the aquatic ecosystems  
                                   of Peconic and South Shore estuaries of
                                   Long Island. As sprawl development     
                                   continues to harden the island's       
                                   landscape, pollution  threatens the    
                                   vitality and health of our bays. Their
                                   recovery depends on kinds of           
                                   enlightened costal management policies
                                   and responsible development practices  
                                   that can be adopted when citizens and  
                                   communities are informed and engaged in
                                   decision making.                       

                                        Charlie Flagg, Ph.D, Research     
                                       Professor, School of Marine and    
                                    Atmospheric Sciences(SoMAS) at Stony  
                                                 Brook SoMA               

                                   Prof. Flagg will share his perspective
                                   as a research scientist and will       
                                   provide a slide presentation of images
                                   of the breach at Old Inlet taken during
                                   his numerous observation flights over  
                                   the area. Mr. Flagg has been studying  
                                   the circulation of the costal lagoons  
                                   of southern Long Island using a        
                                   combination of numerical modeling and  
                                   observation. Currently, he is looking  
                                   at the impact that breaches in Fire    
                                   Island might have on circulation, sea  
                                   level, and salinity distribution in    
                                   Great South Bay. Pof. Flagg will share
                                   data collected at the Bellport marina  
                                   and by the SoMAS research buoy in Great
                                   South Bay that show some noticeable    
                                   changes since Sandy.                   

                                     Joseph Gagliano, Chairman, Bellport  
                                        Village Waterfront Commission     

                                   Mr. Gagliano will share his perspective
                                   as it relates to the actual effects    
                                   being experienced along the Bellport   
                                   Village shoreline post Sandy. Bellport
                                   Village lies directly opposite the     
                                   breach on Fire Island less then two    
                                   miles away.                            

                                         Additional guests include:       

                                   Representatives from shoreline         
                                   communities, municipalities, and       
                                   organizations who will share their     
                                   perspectives with regard to the actual
                                   effects that the breach is having on   
                                   the shoreline post Sandy.              

                                   Shoreline residents and property owners
                                   are urged to attend and will have an   
                                   opportunity to share their perspectives
                                   during the public comment period.      

                                   Please arrive 15 minutes early if you  
                                   wish to sign up for the public comment

Michael S. Bilecki
Chief, Natural Resources Management
Fire Island National Seashore
Ph (631)687-4760
Cell (516)805-3362
Fax (631) 289-4898