Despite the 2010 offshore oil drilling disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, despite the U.S. suddenly becoming the top oil producer in the world and despite decades of opposition, President Barack Obama is moving to open up the offshore Atlantic to oil and gas drilling.
When I was a boy camping with my family at Wildwood State Park in Wading River, deer ticks were unknown. As a Boy Scout involved in intensive hiking and camping all over this region, neither I nor anyone I knew was ever bitten by a deer tick.
But now Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses are a huge problem for all of us. Suffolk County was a hotspot for Lyme when it fi rst emerged in the 1970s and it still is, but it’s now just one of many hotspots across the U.S., indeed the world.
We’ve been struck by an epidemic.
Now that the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) has been decimated and a private utility from New Jersey, Public Service Electric and Gas (PSEG) has been imposed on Long Island, both in a scheme by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, it’s time Suffolk County returned to a vision of a democratically-run “public power” utility. (more…)
This week marked the third anniversary of the start of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster.
Long Island anti-nuclear activists are still taking a deep breath and expressing thanks a similar catastrophe didn’t happen here. “Fukushima shows how we dodged a bullet,” said Jane Alcorn of Wading River, former coordinator of Citizens Lobby Opposing Shoreham.
It’s hard to believe the harebrained scheme now, but the Shoreham nuclear plant was to be the first of seven to 11 nuclear power plants the Long Island Lighting Company (LILCO) wanted to construct. LILCO sought three nuclear plants at its Shoreham site — “Shoreham 1” was fully built when stopped — four at Jamesport and several plants in between, some on Long Island Sound. LILCO also considered building a nuclear plant in Bridgehampton.
The East End of Long Island would have had a nuclear complex similar to that in Fukushima. Daiichi is the Japanese word for “one,” thus Fukushima Daiichi involves one set of six nuclear plants. Four miles south is Fukushima Daini with four nuclear plants.
I’ve been giving presentations on my experiences of 50 years as a journalist on Long Island. Recently I spoke before a business-linked group — the Environmental/Green Industries Committee of the Hauppauge Industrial Association-Long Island. I opened by telling them something they didn’t know; the home base for their organization was a key to the hugely successful preservation of the Long Island Pine Barrens. (more…)