Dear UESiders,

The City Council may have voted, but the fight against the 91st Street garbage station is hardly at an end!

Case and point:  At the request of Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, the Army Corps of Engineers – the federal entity which will pass judgment on the city’s permit to build the station –  has agreed to solicit comment from the community on the environmental effects of  building this facility. 

To inform yourself further, do read the ACE’s request, Congresswoman Maloney’s press release/statement and DNAinfo’s coverage of the issue.  And the East River Crew’s Estuary Guide (attached to the email) is a great reference.

Needless to say, it’s utterly vital that each and every one take a few minutes to compose such a letter – emphasizing the detrimental environmental effects – and forward it to:

Ms. Naomi Handell, Department of the Army Corps of Engineers, New York District,  26 Federal Plaza, Room 1937,  New York, New York 10278

OR

Feel free to deploy the sample letter we’ve attached to the email.

OR

For your convenience we’ll be having printed-out letters you’ll be able to sign at both this weekend’s Greenmarkets.

Okay.  Time for some excellent news:

A new and much greener US Building Code has just been finalized.  Requiring that homes and buildings to achieve energy savings 30% higher than the 2006 code and given that  homes and buildings produce fully half of US greenhouse gases and use over 75% of the electricity generated from power plants, this upgraded code is expected to save American homes and businesses $40 billion annually in energy costs by 2030, says the Alliance to Save Energy. The code will also eliminate the need for about 47 coal plants.

And:

Scholastic’s rethought its partnership with the American Coal Foundation (that’s right!) and won’t be distributing the industry’s nicely packaged messages in America’s classrooms.

On an infinitely more frivilous but still uplifting note:

Want to go to the Andrea Bocelli concert on September 13th, but didn’t get your hands on any of those free tickets?   Well, you can still attend if you volunteer to lend the hand with recycling at the event.  For more, hunt me down at either market or email uppergreenside@gmail.com.

And then there’s this:

From July 25 to September 9, 2011, participants in NYPL’s Read Down Your Fines program can erase all their library fines just by logging their books and reading time on SummerReading.org

AND:

Somehow I wound up in possession of a number of brand new ink cartridges which will be gladly given to whomever shows up first…  The cartridges being HP95 (1, tri-color) and LD-CLI8(many, assorted colors).

Also on hand are 3 packs of Canon glossy photo paper.

Come and get ’em, folks!

As for the week ahead:

Friday, August 5th – Sunday, August 7th:  Rural Route Film Festival 2011

Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35th Ave., Astoria; Brooklyn Grange Rooftop Farm, 37-18 Northern Blvd, Long Island City; Socrates Sculpture Park, 32-01 Vernon Boulevard at Broadway, Astoria;  various times 

Created by a couple of Iowa natives, the festival’s aim is to document the life of rural people and places.  Films include such treats as “Summer Pasture” and “Greenhorns”.  Tickets – $10;  Seniors and students – $7.50; Children – $5.  For full details.

Friday, August 5th:  NY Skies Astonomy Seminar

McBirney House, 125 W 14 Street between Sixth and Seventh, 6:30 – 9pm

Think “Vesta Fiesta” as in Vesta asteroid which, as of July and after a 4 year journey, was finally reached by Dawn spacecraft which is now orbiting the hunk of rock and beaming back incredible photographs! 

Saturday, August 6th:  82nd Street Greenmarket

St. Stephen of Hungary Churchyard, 82nd Street between First and York, 9 am – 3 pm 

With us will be American Seafood,  Bread Alone,  Raghoo, Duncan Dairy, Rabbits’ Run, Rising Sun Beef, Cherry Lane and Ant Hill Farm.

And, yes, answering your cutlery prayers, master knife sharener Barbara Hess will at her table as well!

AND Jenny Paul’s beautiful voice  will be providing our music this week.

Meanwhile, those adorable orange Turkish eggplants of Cherry Lane’s  NY Magazine had a simple but great recipe featuring the little deliciousnesses  in this week’s issue.

Last week’s totals:  ?  (As I was away last week, I’ll be weighing things up on Saturday.) 

YTD (from 3/26):   313 lbs #5, Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges; 795 lbs batteries.  (Amen!)

Saturday, August 6th:  Summer Streets!

Lafayette Street/4th Avenue/Park Avenue from the Brooklyn Bridge to 72nd Street, 7am – 1pm

Yet another year that the Department of Transportation’ s giving us the marvelous gift of a vast, temporarily carless stretch of Manhattan streetscape for walking, biking, building sand castles, climbing a rock wall and more.  For full details

Sunday, August 7th:  92nd Street Greenmarket

92nd Street and First Avenue, 9am–4pm

With us will be Nature’s Way Honey, the Stannart, Gonzalez , Norwich and Phillips Farms, Meredith’s Bakery, American Seafood and the wonderful Stellar cooks.

PLUS

Northern Manhattan Market Manager and incredible chef Margaret Hoffman will be whipping up something great from American Seafood!

And you’ll be smart to opt for Margaret’s approach to preparing corn on the cob…  In the microwave (!) .   Margaret says:

“This idea came originally from the recipe booklet that came with the first microwave I ever had.  Soak corn in its husk in water for a few minutes. Microwave, 1 ear at a time, for 3 minutes on high. Be very careful removing it from the microwave and let it stand for a few minutes before husking. It will be VERY hot. The result is really delicious and nutritious. By cooking the corn in the husk you have trapped all flavor and nutrients inside instead of washing them away in the cooking water!”

Last week’s totals:  ?  (I’ll be weighing up last week’s accumulation on Sunday.)  (And thanks so much for minding the store, Michelle!)

YTD (from 6/19):   44 lbs #5, Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges; 162 lbs batteries.  (Great!)

Wednesday, August 10th:  Word for Word Non-Fiction Civil War Lecture Series

Bryant Park Reading Room, NY Public Library, 42nd Street side of Bryant Park between Fifth and Sixth Avenues, 7pm

Randall Fuller discusses From Battlefields Rising, his new book examining the profound impact of the war on 19th Century writers including Walt Whitman, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Frederick Douglass.  

Voulez-vous de miscellany?

Ever hear there was once a sawmill located on a stream spilling into the East River around 74th Street?

Manhattan isn’t presently on the agenda, but the City is doing some West Nile mosquito spraying in other boroughs.  For locations and dates.

And now for the latest Riverkeeper Hudson River water quality report

Of course, our neck of the woods isn’t included in this report, but Riverkeeper Boat and Water Quality expert Robert Friedman informs us that during the recent water treatment plant fire the UES wasn’t spared, with 2 pipes – likely giant ones – running raw sewage into the East River!

Meanwhile, there are upwards of 400 such pipes throughout the city which, given a mere 1/2-inch of rain, then dispell untreated sewage into NYC waterways. 

No question what a colossal, antiquated  wreck our system of handling of waste water is.

But let us return to the miscellany path:

Just in case you haven’t been in the loop re: the tainted ground turkey outbreak…

Or the Parks Department’s new policy on foraging for edible greens...

Or if you haven’t heard about proposed new agricultural policy and would like to speak up for the family farm

Or that Europe’s facing some of the same fracking quandries as we are…

Or that further research is indicating that gas from shale (i.e. produced by fracking) is just as polluting as coal…  (Why is one not surprised?)

On the other extreme, Nissan will be offering tech that’ll send power from its Leaf car back to the grid from the car owner’s home!

How about a convenient “glossary” detailing  the wonders of  America’s 60 top, must-see national parks

Or America’s 20 most impressive science fair projects?

Or this incredibly beautiful green roof project in Japan?

We’re talking odd-couple animals this week:

As in a very sweet dog and guinea pig

A saintly mother cat and a baby wolf

Best friends lizard and kitty

But let us end with the surprising compassion among – yes! – squirrels

Yours in eternal greenness,

UGS

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