by Grace Nichols
ALBANY: For Save the Pine Bush, I foiled for the pesticide records from the City of Albany beginning in September. So far the City has only provided some rodenticide records for the city proper. Sadly, only one City site has replaced anti-coagulant rodenticides, a danger to hawks and other predators, with mechanical trapping. We have been successful in getting these out of the Pine Bush preserve and landfill itself.
In addition, the City Pesticide Management Board, with authority to grant waivers to pesticide laws for City departments, has held its first meeting. Though largely comprised of department heads who want waivers, there are still several members who have strongly advocated the City Golf Course complying with the Audubon International standards for green golf courses. We are looking forward to reductions in the City’s pesticide usage and budget allocations.
Connection to the welfare of Pine Bush species
We have requested access to the records of all herbicides and other pesticides used at the Restoration over the landfill in the Pine Bush, where it is hoped rare species will go to live. So far, we haven’t received these records, but we will keep insisting as these herbicides are paid for with City bond money.
In addition, the Restoration crew is responsible for reporting to the Common Council on how effective their work has been in promoting the growth of rare species in the new sand atop the landfill. We are all very interested in how it is going and if their model is working; we would like to know if they indeed intend to use fire up there, near the methane release, as some at the Commission have declared they would. We will report on these records as soon as we receive them, and of course, if we don’t get them soon, you will hear about our ongoing fight to make Freedom of Information a reality.
The Common Council plans to review the results before approving funding for this year.
Published in Janury/February, 2012 Save the Pine Bush Newsletter