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More on Climate Change Communication

Interested in digging deeper on the topic of climate change communication? 

Check out a guide on  "The Psychology of Climate Change Communication" by Columbia University's Center for Research on Environmental Decisions.

Some tips:

- "Bring the message close to home. Highlight the current and potential impacts of climate change not only globally, but also locally to increase the audience's sense of connection with the issue."

- "Tap into people's desire to avoid future losses rather than realize future gains."

July 2018

FCWC's FIRST Thursday Pub Talk!

August 23, 2018 @
Broken Bow Brewery, Marbledale Road, Tuckahoe, NY

Sustainable Materials Management - an Introduction
Join us in welcoming Braeden Cohen, Director of Operations.
Braeden will give us the background to the development and projected opening of Westchesters' first commercial food scraps and organics composting facility in Cortlandt Manor.

Welcome to Our New FCWC Board Members!
Recent additions to the FCWC Board

Lisa Copeland resides in the City of Mount Vernon, and is currently a member of the City Council, this year serving as its President. She served as Mount Vernon City Clerk for almost 11 years when she previously  served on our Board of Directors. Lisa also served in State government as Deputy Journal Clerk for the New York State Senate.  She is excited about re-joining the Board to continue her education on environmental issues throughout the County and to be an advocate for environmental justice. Lisa also wants stay informed on environmental crises going on in our State and across the country, and is looking forward to our future collaboration on critical issues facing our County.

Carol G. Durst-Wertheim, Ph.D.   lives in Millwood, has presented 
"Menus in the Movies" at the Chappaqua Library for many years, belongs to the Pleasantville Garden Club and consults for the James Beard 
She comes at environmental concerns from several directions, most notably the food industry, where Carol has worked in many capacities for over 30 years.
Sustainable food growing practices and protection of our soil are critical to her as she thinks from the perspective of seven generations down the line, and from Westchester County, seeing the Hudson Valley farmers at our Farm Markets, working so hard to survive.

Joan Kuhn  is
 the Program Coordinator at the Chappaqua Library where she initiates, plans and helps present programs.
Previously, Joan was a biology teacher in Brooklyn and volunteered at the Bronx Zoo teaching animal conservation to students. She is excited to bring to FCWC her skills in creating programs, forums and events that will further our organization's mission.

FCWC Events and Local News

In case you've missed some of our recent events, and other things happening in the county, here are short recaps and additional resources:


Westchester's First Food Scraps Composting Facility proposed in Cortlandt

On July 10, 2018 the Town of Cortlandt Planning Board held a public hearing on Sustainable Materials Management, Inc.'s proposed plan for a commercial food scraps and organics composting facility in Cortlandt. 

FCWC and representatives from many organizations and individuals from all over Westchester County attended the meeting to urge the Cortlandt Planning Board to approve site plans for the facility, citing the many economic and environmental benefits of having a commercial food scraps composting operation within our county. 

View Channel 12's Video Report by clicking here:

A resolution for final approval of SMM's site plan will be voted upon at the  August 28  meeting of the Cortland Planning Board.   

For information about Sustainable Materials Management, Inc., visit their website:


Cheers for Pleasantville, the latest municipality in Westchester to pass a Reusable Bag Law, placing a $.10 fee on single-use bags, with a ban on plastic bags to be added in 6 months!

Meanwhile, up in Albany, the NYS Senate and Assembly are working on state-wide legislation to promote reusable bags.   FCWC's Board Member Steven Levy and Program Director Anne Jaffe Holmes met with New York State Assemblyman Steve Otis to discuss what's going on in the State Assembly in regards to bag legislation.  There are many drafts and versions still being debated in Albany.  This fall will be an ideal time for citizen input to our elected state officials.

FCWC will be convening a roundtable of representatives from every Westchester municipality, as well as county, state and municipal officials, to discuss elements for effective state reusable bag legislation.  Watch for our updates and invitation in upcoming newsletters. 


A letter from our County Executive:
In response to the public dialogue over the past month on the County Airport, I am asking we immediately implement the following actions:
  • Full resumption of water quality testing. 
The prior water quality testing efforts should be resumed, with reports available for review by Airport management, County officials, Airport Advisory Board members, the press and public. As we analyze the results of the testing, please advise me of problems that need to be addressed, so we can decide on immediate action to correct whatever pollution may be found.
  • Establishment of an Air Quality Monitoring System.
We should implement, as soon as possible, an air quality monitoring system with devices to detect air quality placed in those locations deemed important. We can look at other airports, and the environmental community, for best practices, so that as with water quality, we are fully aware of levels of air pollutants that may exist.
  • Assessment and overhaul of noise monitoring system.
We have heard testimony that the current system of monitoring devices may be antiquated, and improperly placed to accurately register incidents of noise. That system should be reviewed and upgraded with new equipment. In addition, I would like to see us register peak noise incidents, and frequency of peak noise incidents, rather than just averages of noise, to better portray the level of offensive noise being experienced by residents.
  •  Overhaul of noise complaint system. 
    Please ensure that a full review of our system for receiving, tracking and responding to noise complaints is completed, and all needed changes are made. Since this is an internal function, I'd like to see us ready with a revised program by November 1st - 120 days from today - that includes the suggestions from the many individuals who use the existing system and find it insufficient.

    Separately, County Attorney John Nonna has outlined a plan to deal with the PFOA pollution from the Airport, and we should ensure that we are executing all aspects of the effort to remediate the pollution that exists, and monitor any additional sightings of those pollutants.

    There are many other changes to be made at the Airport, but these five areas are wholly within our control and funds are available in Airport operations to ensure their completion. They would show a tangible willingness by our new County Administration to improve the current situation as it affects residents. This is not intended to be a complete response to the concerns raised - just Phase One of the necessary changes.

    Many thanks.
    George Latimer
    Westchester County Executive 

    FCWC Staff News

    We are thrilled to welcome Monika Kerschus-Granholm to FCWC 
    as our new Membership Relations Coordinator
    Monika has a diverse background in environmental sciences as well as business, and is now combining the two.  Skilled in photography, she will be driving our social media to help us connect with you, our members and friends, more effectively. One of the founders of the Greenburgh Nature Center, Monika has worked at the American Museum of Natural History (technician/herpetology), as well as having been a leader in revenue integrity with two large airlines (KLM & Lufthansa). Monika can generally be reached at our office at PACE White Plains weekdays, 3-5 PM, or by email.

    Monika looks forward to connecting with you!

    For a full list of our member organizations' events and happenings, check out our Federation Calendar at . Remember to always confirm events before attending. Check back regularly as we are always updating.

    Summer Bird Walk Series - Walk 1
    Sponsored by:  Sheldrake Environmental Center
    When:  Saturday, July 21, 9:00am - 10:30am
    Sheldrake Environmental Center - Main building, 685 Weaver Street, Larchmont

    Spend your summer getting to know the birds around you!  Morning bird walks are a great way to learn something new this summer that you can benefit from year-round.  We will become familiar with common resident species, including feeder birds, and summer breeders.
    Some binoculars are available to borrow, but bring your own if you have them.
    The Program is FREE but Registration is  Required

    Movie - Reinventing Power
    Sponsored by:  Sierra Club
    When:  Wednesday, August 8, 7:00pm
    Ossining Public Library, 53 Croton Avenue, Ossining  

    This movie takes us across the country to hear directly from the people making our clean energy future achievable. These individuals are working to rebuild what's broken, rethink what's possible, and revitalize communities. These stories are proof that America does not need to choose between keeping our lights on and protecting our communities. Critically, Reinventing Power underscores the notion that we don't have to sacrifice jobs for a clean environment. Supporting a clean energy future means building a better, more prosperous future for everyone. Over the film's 50 minutes, you'll meet people in eight states whose lives were changed by the renewable energy industry while exploring various aspects of the clean energy industry from innovation to installation. Moderated discussion after the movie.


    Our Vision And Mission
    FCWC, founded in 1965, envisions a county in which an environmental ethic defines and shapes all public and private decisions.
    Our mission is to provide leadership that  educates about environmental
    issues,  advocates sound decision making, and  unifies groups and
    individuals to protect and preserve Westchester's environment and
    address climate change.

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    We hope you find the information contained within this E-News relevant and useful. As always, please keep in touch and let us know your thoughts and ideas regarding environmental issues throughout the County. 
    Federated Conservationists of Westchester County