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News stories tagged with "sustainability"

Amendment allows Raquette Lake well in ADK preserve

Next Tuesday, millions of New Yorkers will vote on a constitutional amendment that will determine the future of one tiny Adirondack village. The proposed change would allow the 160 residents of Raquette Lake to draw drinking water from a well that sits on the Adirondack forest preserve. The constitutional amendment is needed because most human structures are banned on state land in the six-million acre park. As Brian Mann reports, the ballot initiative represents a partnership between local government leaders and pro-environment groups.  Go to full article
The Boucher family at their booth at the Burlington farmers market.
The Boucher family at their booth at the Burlington farmers market.

Dairy farmers branch out

Yesterday, we heard from sociologist Douglas Harper, who wrote a book about North Country dairy farmers called "Changing Works: Visions of a Lost Agriculture". The title refers to the rural practice of neighbors pooling their labor to get big projects done, like harvesting or barn-raising. Harper will speak tomorrow night at SUNY Potsdam. In the North Country and nationwide, "changing works" has mostly ceded to big tractors and computerized milk parlors as dairy farms have ballooned in size. But Dan Boucher of Highgate, Vermont hasn't given the practice up. Boucher represents a still small, but growing group: dairy farmers who are resisting the "get big or get out" trend. Instead, they're getting smaller, investing in new products, and relying less on the price of milk. David Sommerstein has this profile.  Go to full article

Cap on big box retail stores proposed for Saranac Lake

Supporters of a temporary cap on the size of retail stores in Saranac Lake and Harrietstown turned out in force at a public meeting on the issue Tuesday night. Most of the roughly twenty people who spoke supported a proposed two-year size-limit on stores. Individual stores would be capped at 40,000 square feet. Shopping centers would be capped at 68,000 square feet. The proposal comes in the wake of Wal-Mart's failed attempt to locate a super center in Saranac Lake. As Chris Knight reports, town and village leaders are expected to consider implementing the retail cap in the coming weeks.  Go to full article

Energy Fair Looks at the Big Picture

If you're concerned about high gas prices you may be interested in interested in alternative fuels.Or maybe you'd like your home to be more energy efficient. You'd like to use solar, wind or micro-hydro energy, or build "green". There is a long list of alternative ways to produce or save energy, and most of that list can be found somewhere on the agenda for the Eleventh Annual North Country Sustainable Energy Fair at Canton College today and tomorrow. A panel on biodiesel kicks off the fair tonight at canton College. Martha Foley talked with Ann Heidenreich, of Community Energy Services, one of the organizers.  Go to full article

Energy Fair Continues to Grow

A local effort to move us all into a more renewable and sustainable way of life continues this weekend. The North Country Sustainable Energy Fair is a three-day event for the first time. Martha Foley talks with Tom Van De Water, a science teacher at Canton High School, where the fair will be held.  Go to full article

Watertown Copes With Growing Pains

The greater Watertown area is experiencing a period of tremendous growth. Once known as an industrial city powered by the Black River, Watertown's economy today is driven by the nearby Fort Drum Army base. Almost 6,000 new soldiers and their families are moving to the region as a part of a military reshuffling - almost a 20% population increase. The growth is fueling new home construction and new businesses. And the city is reshaping its downtown and its waterfront. Local leaders have invited renowned economic development expert Michael Kinsley to help them harness growth in the region. Kinsley will speak at a community forum at Jefferson Community College tonight at 7. David Sommerstein spoke with 3 community leaders about the challenges and opportunities they face. Mary Corriveau is the city of Watertown's manager. Don Alexander is with the Jefferson County Job Development Corporation. And Denise Young directs JCC's Center for Community Studies. Young says she wants to preserve Watertown's small-town feel as the community expands.  Go to full article
Ross Whaley
Ross Whaley

APA Chair Ross Whaley: Everyday Challenges, Future Visions

Ross Whaley came to the Adirondack Park Agency last September from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry in Syracuse. He was president at ESF for 16 years, and then was University Professor. As Professor, his interest was the political economy of sustainable development. As chairman of the Park Agency, that's still where his interest lies. But it's now focused on the 6 million-acre park, where he sees the potential for a model of environmental and economic symbiosis. Realizing the vision is largely in the future. Whaley told Martha Foley his first year has been taken up with learning the ropes, and responding to challenges he's inherited from the first 30 years of APA history.  Go to full article

What's the Future for Farm Markets?

As we heard in David Sommerstein's story, there's optimism in a new kind of farm in the North Country. The biggest challenge all farms face to survive is the same, though, finding a market that offers a liveable price for farm products. To learn more about agricultural markets, Martha Foley spoke with Fred Kirschenmann, director of the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture in Iowa.  Go to full article

Going Local: SLU to Host 2nd Burt Symposium

Last March, a group of St. Lawrence County stakeholders -- government officials, economic developers, educators, planners, environmentalists and residents -- set their sights on going local. Martha Foley talks with Michael Shuman, author of the book Going Local: Creating Self-Reliant Communities in a Global Age, and Stephen Blackmer, President of the Northern Forest Center. They're both featured speakers at next month's Burt Symposium.  Go to full article
Paul Hawken of <i>Natural Capitalism</i>
Paul Hawken of Natural Capitalism

Sustainability Guru Kicks Off Series in Watertown

Jefferson Community College in Watertown kicks off a year-long look at sustainable economic development tonight with a nationally-known speaker on the subject. Environmentalist, entrepreneur, and author Paul Hawken will help JCC examine ways to increase business and jobs in the area while conserving energy and natural resources. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

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