Our climate is changing, and our approaches to politics and activism have to change with it. That’s why The Nation, in partnership with the Food & Environment Reporting Network, has launched “Taking Heat,” a series of dispatches from the front lines of the climate-justice movement, by journalist Audrea Lim.
In late 2019, the first cooperatively owned solar installation will go live in New York City. The 80,000-square-foot array sits atop the roof of an industrial building at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. Nearby residents in the low-income Sunset Park neighborhood can pay a subscription fee to access clean energy from the installation, and in exchange receive credits that lower their monthly bills.
The Brooklyn Army Terminal project was careful to build in both environmental and equitable returns to residents of Sunset Park. The solar array can provide enough clean energy for 200 households or businesses, while saving those cash-strapped New Yorkers about $1 million in offset power costs over then next 25 years. In monthly terms, that’s about a 20% reduction per bill.
A report released Wednesday by the Center for an Urban Future determined that in the past decade Brooklyn has outpaced Manhattan and most major U.S. cities in jobs and company growth for fields related to technology and the creative and advanced manufacturing industries.
ALBANY — Advocates hoping the end of session agenda in Albany will include strict environmental protections made sure state lawmakers and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo could hear their pleas in the Capitol on Tuesday.
Dozens of people backing the Climate and Community Protection Act - a sweeping piece of state legislation aimed at addressing climate change - marched through the halls, chanted at deafening volumes and blocked entrances, including staging mass "die-in" outside the entrance to Cuomo's second-floor office.
Sunset Park residents took to the streets on Saturday to rally for a second time against Industry City’s plans to rezone — this time, interrupting a “wine and artisanal food” festival.
Grassroots nonprofit UPROSE, which previously protested the rezoning proposal in March and also organized this weekend’s rally, alleges that Industry City’s plan to expand the waterfront’s usable space would displace Sunset Park residents.
The back-and-forth debate over the proposed BQX streetcar, a mass transit improvement that wouldn’t be developed by the MTA, reminds me somewhat of the Roosevelt Island Tram, which was likewise developed without the aid of the metro area’s transit authority.
Sunset Park’s Industry City plans to diverge from its status as a manufacturing hub and thrust itself into a place of international appeal with a prominent rezoning plan that some local residents and community groups say could drastically alter the character of the waterfront neighborhood.
Marcela Mityanes, a resident of the Sunset Park neighborhood in south Brooklyn, can't leave her apartment without seeing signs of rapid change. The deli on the corner is closing; a coffee shop is opening next door. Luxury mega-developments are rising over full blocks. Even the Key Food is selling different products. Passing a building undergoing gut-renovation, Mityanes, a tenant organizer with the local group Neighbors Helping Neighbors, can't help but wonder about who was living there before and where they went. She's heard increasing complaints of tenant harassment, rent hikes, and evictions throughout the working-class, predominately Latino and Asian neighborhood. "I feel like it's been sporadic and spaced out. But now it just seems like it's happening on every other block," she says.
In the past week, the New York Post and New York Daily News published editorials criticizing New York City Council Member Carlos Menchaca’s March 6 request to delay the certification of a consortium of major real estate investors and developers’ application for a special permit to build two hotels and rezone Industry City for retail, office, and academic uses. The accusatory language in both newspaper editorials exhibits a deep contempt for the necessary public review of private development proposals. read more.
On Wednesday, March 28, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) announced that it is attempting to bring a community rooftop solar garden to the Brooklyn Army Terminal (BAT) in hopes of bringing both affordable and sustainable energy to the Sunset Park neighborhood. Read more.
On a clear day, looking out over the sloshing blue-gray swell of Gowanus Bay from Sunset Park’s waterfront, you can see the Manhattan skyline. Pivot slightly and you’ll find eight nearly identical warehouses, erected between Second Avenue and the Gowanus Expressway. Weave through the alleyways between them to sit in sterile parks under the illumination of crisscrossed Christmas lights, or trek inside to drink at a sake brewery or drop $500 on a Charlie Hat from Teressa Foglia. Outside, semi-trucks rumble over potholes, and the awnings of bodegas fade in the sun. Read more.
World leaders and scientists alike have agreed that the biggest threat currently facing humanity is climate change. Although the United States withdrew from the Paris Agreement in June of 2017, the American people have remained committed to doing their part to mitigate risks and build towards a more sustainable low-carbon future. Read more.
That was the message of a protest outside of Industry City on Friday, March 15 as non-profit UPROSE led the charge against a rezoning proposal which would expand the waterfront’s usable space while also building up in terms of hotels and retail. Read more.
The ninth annual conference on New Directions in Environmental Law took place at Yale University’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies on March 2. Organizers of the gathering maintain that climate change is the greatest threat to social justice, human rights and progress around the world. Conference participants explored existing challenges and legal and policy solutions to the crisis, placing climate justice at the center of the discussion. Read more.
Most of the Natural Resources Committee’s witnesses after the governors were environmental and social activists, who spoke of how climate change would hit poor and minority communities the hardest. Read More
The power of the new Congress, filled with energetic and idealistic lawmakers with fresh ideas, will be on full display this week as a proposal, known as the Green New Deal, gets a formal introduction today in the House and Senate along with two congressional hearings to put climate on center stage after a long lull in the congressional agenda. Read more