WXXI AM News

environment

Advocates for clean drinking water say proposed new limits by the state Health Department for chemicals in the water supply that are linked to cancer and other serious illnesses are too high and will lead to serious health problems.

Noelle E. C. Evans / WXXI News

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer is challenging the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s decision to stop collecting data on bee colonies in places like Rochester. 

Veronica Volk / WXXI News

Lewis McCaffery stands on a dock looking out over Seneca Lake.

"Sometimes while you’re doing this job, you do think, 'Wow, I am the luckiest guy to be paid to go out on the lake.' Even though there are some problems on the lake, it’s still wonderful to be out there."

The problems McCaffery is referring to are what he is here to test for.

When it comes to fighting climate change, there tends to be two schools of thought. One says that it’s all about personal responsibility, and acting every day in a way that is sustainable. The other says it’s mostly about policy, especially on the federal level.

Our guests believe the two camps are related, and they try to live every hour in a way that is sensitive to our changing climate. So what does that look like? What changes might they inspire in others? Our guests:

  • Enid Cardinal, senior sustainability advisor to the president at RIT
  • Kimie Romeo, activist and recent environmental sustainability award winner

Governor Andrew Cuomo is proposing a ban on single-use plastic bags in New York. We discuss the possible impacts with guests from a variety of perspectives:

St. John Fisher College has launched a new major: students can now graduate with a degree in sustainability. The program links the campus to the community in an effort to ignite conversations about sustainability across industries.

We discuss the program, what it means to graduate with a sustainability degree, and how students can apply that knowledge after college. In studio:

  • Michael Boller, Ph.D., associate professor in biology, and director of the sustainability program at St. John Fisher College
  • Patricia Donahue, senior pollution prevention engineer, and manager of the sustainable supply chain program at the New York State Pollution Prevention Institute
  • Julia Greene, St. John Fisher College graduate with a degree in psychology and a minor in sustainability
  • Evan Bourtis, senior at St. John Fisher College majoring in biology and media communications and minoring in sustainability

The Seneca Park Zoo Society is honoring organizations and community members for their conservation and environmental efforts. The Zoo will host its inaugural Environmental Innovation Awards & Symposium in October.

We get a preview of that event, and we discuss how leaders in our community are finding innovative solutions to environmental problems – from zero waste practices to green technology and more. Our guests:

Caitlin Whyte / WXXI News

The Cumming Nature Center is a little oasis about an hour south of Rochester. With miles of quiet trails through swamplands and towering pine trees, it’s a great place to talk about citizen science.

So what exactly does that term mean?

Nathan Hayes, the director of the nature center, says its the “crowdsourcing of scientific information. Multiple people all over the place putting the puzzle pieces together to get the picture.”

There is so much information to collect, Hayes says, that scientists alone can’t do it all. That’s where the rest of us can help. He says people can get involved and collect valuable information wherever they may be.

“We can study -- we should study -- these woods, and not worry about the Amazon. I mean, worry about the Amazon, but you don’t have to go away to contribute to important scientific base of knowledge, you can do it in your backyard.”


When you put something into a recycling bin, is it going to be actually recycled? Steve Orr of the Democrat and Chronicle offered an in-depth look into the state of local recycling, including the financial pressures and the choices in front of us.

We discuss what does - and does not - happen with our recycling, and the forces that are causing change. In studio: 

Incinerator company sues Finger Lakes resident, town boards

Jun 13, 2018
Wikimedia Commons

A Rochester company is suing the town of Romulus for the way it changed its zoning rules to ban trash incinerators. The lawsuit names the town council, the zoning board and one resident.

 

The company, Circular enerG, wants to build a trash incinerator near Seneca Lake in Romulus. They say the town violated state law when it made changes to its zoning code to prohibit incinerators like theirs.

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