Jun 28, 2010

Upcoming Event for Wastebed 13 Plans

On June 16, 2010 the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency officially released the supplemental Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) for Wastebed 13 in Camillus, NY. The supplemental HHRA is a document that analyzes and discusses the the potential effects on human health that placing dredged contaminated sediments from Onondaga Lake bottom into Wastebed 13 may pose to residents in the vicinity. Findings show that the entire process of dewatering, transporting, and storing the sediments poses no "unacceptable risks for the surrounding community". No matter if you view these risks as acceptable or unacceptable, we encourage you to contribute your voice to this process.

July 8, 2010 is your moment!
The EPA and the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) are holding open house at the Martha Eddy Room at the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse, NY at 5:30 pm and a public meeting at 6:30 pm. There will be a public discussion about the risk assessment and a chance for the public to directly ask questions. Contact information is available for those who wish to submit written comments in the EPA press release.

The official EPA press release for the document can be found here: http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/d10ed0d99d826b068525735900400c2a/0ea8db175cff852e852577450051f150!OpenDocument
This link also includes physical locations of where to find hard copies of the plan.

If you would like to read the risk assessment online, you can find it here: http://www.epa.gov/region02/superfund/npl/0203382c.htm
This is a recommended summer read ;-) !

Resident of Camillus? Care about the lake? Oppose or support the plan? Like to comment on blogs? Feel free to leave a comment down below and let others know what you think.

- Janaile

Snake in the Lake

We enjoyed a rain-less "listening to the lake" Sunday, June 28,2010. An osprey flew back and forth several times, and a kingfisher, along with barn swallows chasing insects over the water. Geese paddled single file past the pier and mallard families fed around the burgeoning macrophyte growth. We saw Caspian terns and the usual gulls. And this snake (see picture) which I photographed near the shore as we were leaving.

Jun 15, 2010

The view from the water: alternative states

After Sunday's 6 am silent sitting, Gary Weinstein generously took us out on his boat, a 30 yr old Starcraft that purred along unobtrusively. The view from the middle of the lake is remarkable; so are the views of the bank swallow and kingfisher nests in the walls of white waste lining the lake near Lake View Point. We saw several herons (great blues), and a quartet of turkey vultures picking through washed-up detritus on the beach. Spotted sandpipers' ringing peetoweet, peetoweet, peetoweet calls
The photo shows a couple of bank swallow nest holes, selected among dozens which lined the vertical wall facing the Ninemile Creek outlet. Note the cedars, coming back, and I also saw an elm or two. Elms were cleared from the Point, according to Don Thompson, to make way for the Lake View Resort in 1872 or so.

Jun 1, 2010

Department of Health expands fish regulations - NewsChannel 9 WSYR

Central New Yorkers should only eat up to four meals a month of brown bullhead and pumpkinseed. They have been added to the lake's fish advisory list this year.

It's also recommended that older women and adult men avoid eating large or smallmouth bass over 15 inches; as well as carp, channel catfish, white perch, and walleye.

Women under 50 years old and children under 15 shouldn't eat any fish at all from Onondaga Lake.

"We don't recommend that people eat fish out of here," said SUNY ESF Dean of Research Neil Ringler

I'm glad to see this information getting out to people- it's absolutely criminal that the current warnings about fish consumption aren't posted clearly around the lake. We can't expect that everyone fishing from the lake has a fishing liscense, and has read the fish consumption advisory booklet put out by the DEC. There is a very large immigrant population on the North Side; many come from countries in which fishing from the local waterbody was the way that you get your dinner. How are they to know not to fish from Onondaga Lake?

Someday we will be able to eat the fish again; but that's not possible until the toxins in the lake - especially the PCBs and mercury in the sediments - are cleaned up.