10/27/14 3:00pm
Senator LaValle presented L.I. Farm Bureau executive director Joe Gergela with the Paul Stoutenburgh Leadership Award.

State Sen. Ken LaValle presented L.I. Farm Bureau executive director Joe Gergela with the Paul Stoutenburgh Leadership Award.

North Fork Environmental Council advocacy volunteers Friday celebrated the 2014 Paul Stoutenburgh Leadership Award winner, the first since the recent death of the council’s notable co-founder.

Long-time Long Island Farm Bureau executive director Joseph Gergela — who is retiring after 26 years in the role — received the award, a decision that came as a surprise to some, considering the fact that relationships between farmers and environmentalists can sometimes be seen as at-odds.

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10/27/14 12:00pm
(Credit: Courtesy SBU SoMAS)

(Credit: Courtesy SBU SoMAS)

Researchers from Stony Brook University and The Nature Conservancy released a map last week that depicts the location and breadth of water quality problems, such as brown tide and hypoxia, that cropped up around Long Island this past year.

While the experts noted the cool summer helped ward off the potential for widespread algal blooms, the blooms weren’t the only cause for concern in 2014.

And, the issues were widespread, ranging Long Island Sound waters near the Bronx and Queens, to Mattituck and Montauk.

The map highlights the presence of rust tides in the western Peconics, paralytic shellfish poisoning in Meetinghouse Creek in Aquebogue, and toxic blue-green algae in Mattituck’s Lake Marratooka, among others.

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10/26/14 10:00am
An electronic cigarette. (Credit: Lindsay Fox/ecigarettereviewed.com)

An electronic cigarette. (Credit: Lindsay Fox/ecigarettereviewed.com)

What was intended as a smoking cessation aid is the new smoking trend among Long Island’s youth, say health experts and local school officials, who are seeing an uptick in the number of students using electronic cigarettes.

Mattituck High School principal Shawn Petretti said he has recently seen firsthand an increase in the number of students using e-cigarettes.  (more…)

10/23/14 4:04pm
Peconic Bay in Riverhead

The entrance to Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead. (Credit: file photo)

Officials from Stony Brook Medical Center and North Shore-LIJ medical care systems confirmed reports Thursday that they are in affiliation talks with both Peconic Bay Medical Center and Eastern Long Island Hospital.

The news comes two years after Southampton Hospital announced that it’s been in talks with Stony Brook. (more…)

10/23/14 11:11am
(Credit: Carrie Miller)

(Credit: Carrie Miller)

Volunteers from two area fire departments were called to extinguish a fire in a Riverhead Town highway department bulldozer Thursday morning.

Eddie Reeve, a town highway department worker said they returned from a break to find a puddle of oil on the ground beside the vehicle, which was up in flames.

Riverhead Town police received word of the fire about 9:45 a.m. in the town Highway department sand mine, which is located near the town dump on Manor Lane in Jamesport.

Volunteers from Jamesport Fire department and Riverhead Fire departments were called to the scene.

Workers had been using the bulldozer to move sand around earlier that morning.

Highway Superintendent Gio Woodson was not immediately available for comment.

10/22/14 8:00am
A sandbar at the end of Pine Neck Road in Southold. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

A sandbar at the end of Pine Neck Road in Southold. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

It’s no Mega Millions, but 19 Suffolk County homeowners will soon hit the lottery in a county drawing to test new wastewater treatment systems.

Suffolk County officials are seeking homeowners willing to offer their properties as testing sites for advanced wastewater treatment systems, in hopes of finding a system suitable for use in individual homes.  (more…)