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Making Good in Their Own Hometown&emdash;EPA Honors Aaron Mair and Farnsworth Middle School

by Rezsin Adams

April 18, 2000 was the big day when the Environmental Protection Agency awarded their highest honor, the Environmental Quality Award, to Aaron Mair and Guilderland's Farnsworth Middle School. Twenty-three awards were given in all of Region 2 to individuals, businesses and schools. Aaron Mair, Arbor Hill Environmental Justice Corporation, and Alan Fiero, science teacher, and four students at Farnsworth Middle School went to New York City to receive the awards.

EPA makes annual awards for "protecting and enhancing the environment." Aaron Mair's organization has worked for over a decade, battling to clean up the Hudson River and the Hudson River region, highlighting the clean up of PCBs, raising awareness of lead in the environment and lead poisoning, and the growing incidence of asthma in this area. On May 13, Aaron Mair hosted a "Fish In" on the banks of the Hudson, bringing a crowd together to talk with leaders of local environmental groups&emdash;to talk about problems and to talk about solutions.

The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission nominated Farnsworth Middle School to receive one of this year's Environmental Quality Award. Students have girdled over 25,000 aspens in the past four years and have planted thousands of Pitch Pine seedlings in the Pine Bush. They have created and staffed a Butterfly House at the school which they've named the "Butterfly Station" after the long gone railroad station, Karner Station. This year's project is to give native plants to people living and gardening in the Pine Bush and, of course, everyone is invited to visit the Native Plant Garden and the Butterfly Station this summer, totally run by students.

Save the Pine Bush congratulates Aaron Mair and the Arbor Hill Environmental Justice Corporation and the students and teachers at Farnsworth Middle School. We're real proud of all of you!

published May/June 2000 Newsletter
Last Updated 5/23/00

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