Greenburgh is a great community because of our volunteers. We are fortunate to have some outstanding members of the Conservation Advisory Council. They provided me with the following update. There is currently one vacancy on the Board. Interested in serving? E mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Conservation Advisory Council (CAC) advises the Town Board on environmental matters affecting unincorporated Greenburgh and its residents. The CAC also makes recommendations on applications for permits to disturb wetlands or watercourses and their associated buffers. The CAC is composed of 7 members residing in unincorporated Greenburgh.
The CAC is pleased to have an opportunity to update the community on the CAC’s activities.
In the past year, eleven wetlands applications were reviewed. In addition to wetlands or watercourse impacts, the reviews assessed and suggested mitigations to reduce the impacts of tree removals and increased artificial night light. Additional tree removal applications were reviewed.
Environmental Law Review
Updates to the town’s environmental laws: wetland and watercourse, tree, steep slope, storm water management, and local environment quality review were evaluated and the CAC suggested changes were adopted.
The CAC issued reports on the draft Comprehensive Plan. Issues commented on included: water runoff, trees, wildlife and vegetation, traffic impacts, air pollution, and artificial night light.
Environmental Studies and Recommendations
CAC recommendations are made after issues are studied and discussed by its members. Recommendations are made via written public reports to the Town Board. The study the impact of plastic bags resulted in a realization that both plastic and paper one time use bags are equally harmful to the environment and that a ban while including both should have exceptions for certain types of merchandise. The CAC recommended to be more effective that legislation should be at the county level.
In response to a request by Supervisor Feiner, the CAC working with a summer intern prepared a report on the harmful impacts of artificial night light and presented it at a Town Board meeting. The report recognized the energy savings to be had from the use of LED lighting. Subsequently the Town began to execute its plan to install LED lights.
Support of County Legislation
The CAC has issued recommendations to the County Board of Legislators supporting:
Legislation limiting the use of single-use bags, and
Legislation banning more highly polluting no. 2 and no. 4 heating oils.
In addition to the ongoing review of development projects, the CAC is currently working the following:
A study assessing the negative impacts of noise,
Developing legislation to redirect edible food waste,
Recommendations to improve air quality, from Westchester County’s “F” air quality rating, and
Gathering community support for updating the Town’s Tree Law.
CAC Meetings and Membership
The CAC is created by chapter 520 of the Town Code. It usually meets on the second and fourth Thursday of each month, except August, at 6:30 pm at Town Hall. Meetings are open to the public. At present, the CAC has a vacancy for one member. Anyone interested should contact, Patricia Arpaia in the Planning Department at 989-1538.