Going Green is a video series devoted to environmental problem solving. Episodes air on Time Warner Cable's news channels, and on ESF's web, YouTube and iTunes U sites. Going Green is produced by YNN News in collaboration with SUNY-ESF.
- A Net Zero Home
Peter Cann has made his home in rural Casatota, N.Y. a net zero home, meaning he is producing all the electrical power his home needs. In fact, on many occasions his system is actually supplying power to other homes.
- Urban Deer Invasion
Dr. Brian Underwood explains why we are seeing more deer in urban neighborhoods. It's a combination of the landscape becoming a more inviting habitat and the lack of predators. A solution to the accompanying problems is expensive and controversial. Realistic possibilities include extensive fencing and culling the herd with a professional harvest operation.
- Earth Day
Earth Day Going Green segment on some of the effects of climate change that we are seeing right now.
- Future of Green Energy
Former Assistant US Energy Secretary Dan Reicher sees both short and long term opportunities to improve on our use and development of green energy from practicing greater conservation to the development and distribution of new technologies.
- Great Lakes Under Stress
The Great Lakes Environmental Assessment and Mapping Project produced an interactive map of the Great Lakes showing how much environmental stress each lake is facing. The purpose is to help stakeholders make good decisions solving the various problems affecting the lakes.
- Installing Solar Power
This Going Green segment highlights how solar power systems are installed and how they can be funded.
- New York Expands Ash Quarantine
NYS has expanded the quarantine on the shipment of ash wood trying to slow the spread of an invasive species, the emerald ash borer.
- Milfoil Invades Another NY Lake
Eurasian milfoil has been discovered in Lake Norwood in Northern New York.
- Sustainable Towns
Panasonic is designing and building entire towns focusing on sustainability and the use of renewable energy resources.
- Flushing with Stormwater Runoff
Syracuse University is going to collect rain and snowmelt from the roof of their Carrier Dome and use the water to operate the restrooms in the nearly 50,000 seat sports and entertainment arena.
- NYSERDA and You
How individuals can reduce energy use and help the environment using programs available through NYSERDA, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority.
- NYSERDA Helps Businesses
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority offers grants and incentives to businesses and other institutions to help them switch to alternative forms of energy that reduce costs and lessen the impact of fossil fuel pollution.
- Conservation Farming Going Green
A 200 cow dairy farm in southern Onondaga County takes a conservation approach in their operation. They use rotational grazing moving the cows over constructed laneways from paddock to paddock. They constructed a roof over the barnyard area to keep stormwater runoff from carrying off manure. They also constructed a filtering system to collect waste water and clean it before it returns to the acquifer underneath their property.
- Sewage Overflow Control
Sewer lines combined with storm drainage lines create pollution possibilities during heavy storms. To prevent that, very large storage facilities are being constructed underground to collect storm runoff until the storm subsides and the water can be run through the treatment system before being released.
- Deconstruction Versus Demolition
Deconstructing homes to use the materials in new buildings as opposed to demolishing the buildings and sending the debris to a landfill.
- GIS Solving Environmental Problems
GIS - geospatial information systems - are being used to solve environmental and social problems such as whether tree cover is growing or retracting or where is crime occuring on national forest land.
- Real Versus Fake Christmas Trees
Making the case for using a real Christmas versus a fake or artificial tree during the holiday season.
- A Low Emissions Power Plant
A new wood-fired combined heat and power plant uses a number of techniques to keep emissions well below the required limit.
- State Fights Invasive Species
NY state is developing new rules and penalties to prevent the spread of invasive species like hydrilla or zebra mussels requiring boaters to remove such species from their boats and trailers when they move from one body of water to another. A list of invasive plants and animals is also being drafted.
- Lighting Arenas with LED Lights
A Syracuse company offers LED lighting systems for arenas such as the Onondaga County War Memorial where the AHL Syracuse Crunch hockey team plays its home games.
- Gnerating Your Own Heat and Power
The new Gateway Center at SUNY-ESF has its own heat and power system fueled by natural gas and wood pellets that run microturbines to generate electricity and use left over low pressure steam to heat and power the building as well as four other buildings on campus.
- A Very, Very Energy Efficient Building
The new Gateway Center at SUNY-ESF is designed to be very, very efficient in its use of energy to light, heat and cool the building.
- Sustainable Food Preparation
Steps to make food preparation in large dining services like educational institutions less wasteful and more sustainable.
- Cow Power
A dairy farm is using a methane digester to produce nearly all the electrical power they need plus fertilizer for their crops and bedding for their cows.
- Creating A No-Mow Zone
Location and choice of plantings are the keys to a successful no-mow zone.
- No-Mow Zone
Using wildflowers, fescue and other plantings to replace lawns with no mow zones that reduce labor costs and environmental pollutants.
- New Fines for Spreading Invasive Species
Trying to slow the spread of the emerald ash borer, New York State is enacting fines of $200 to $2000 for people or businesses that transport invasive species which can happen through the movement of fire wood and wood products.
- Solar Powered Boat
A photovoltiac array is used to power the batteries that propel a pontoon boat.
- Federal Funding to Boost Shrub Willow Growth
A $4.3-million Federal grant is being used to encourage farmers and landowners in Central and Northern New York to grow shrub willow that will be a renewable energy resource as part of the feedstock for wood-burning power plants.
- Solar Powered Landfill
Madison County is using flexible solar panels laid out on closed portions of their landfill to produce electricity. The power is used to operate their nearby recycling center.
- Funding Stormwater Management
The 50-kilowatt solar panel array stretching out across the roof of this water storage tank is producing all the electrical power needed to operate the City of Syracuse’s Westcott Reservoir.
- Reservoir Generates Power
Here’s what it looks like now and one of the 375-foot diameter storage tanks is playing host to a 50-kilowatt solar panel system.
- Rainwater Used To Make Ice
It looks like regular ice, it feels like ice, it’s slippery like ice- but this ice is very different from ice in any other hockey arena. The rink surface is made from rain and snow run off from the roof of the building. What’s more, it’s the first of the kind in the country.
- Micro Hydro Turbine
Peter Cann has a real gem in his backyard. No, it doesn’t shimmer. But it does spin. It’s a micro hydro turbine, or small water generator.
- Net Zero
Peter Cann is a man on a mission. He is striving to make his home as energy independent as possible, a status he calls net zero.
- Creating Bike Friendly Streets
How do you get people out of their cars and onto a bicycle? City planners are channeling the movie Field of Dreams: “Build it and they will come.”
- Making Cities Biking and Walking Friendly
As streets are being restriped and rebuilt or when new streets are being designed, city planners are incorporating a multi-modal approach to encourage more bicycling and walking.
- Monitoring Vernal Pools
"I'm tracking very closely the growth and development of amphibian larvae that you can see swimming around in here, mostly wood frog tadpoles," said James Arrigoni, a PhD student in conservation biology.
- Employers Adding Bicycle Amenities
More and more employers are encouraging employees to get out of their cars and bicycle to work. One way of doing that is to add more bicycle amenities to their properties.
- Turtle Crossing
Here's a warning sign you don't see everyday but it's part of a growing effort to help wildlife and humans co-exist. Here, on a dirt road next to a wetland, the Blanding's turtle, looks to nest. That's if they can make it safely across.
- New Biking Maps
All roadways are open for bicycle riders, except for a few restricted roadways like interstate highways, but not all roadways make for safe and comfortable bike riding.
- Green Buildings Open House
A statewide effort to encourage homeowners to go green will happen on Saturday, October 1st, as people who've already done it show off their homes in the annual Green Buildings Open House organized by the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association.
- F-M Solar Panels
Mike Vespi the F-M Assistant Superintendent for Business Services said, "The students will have an opportunity to monitor the data in terms of what electricity is being produced and so we are really excited about that because this is a project that will allow our students to learn from the actual installation of the solar panels."
- Old Newspaper as Home Insulation
A new way to get rid of old newspapers is to use it as insulation.
- Teaching for Green Careers
More and more colleges are developing courses that feed into the growing green economy. For example, Onondaga Community College offers an environmental technology course that leads to a number of job opportunities.
- Energy Smart Learning Center
There is a lot of talk about building green, which is creating or remodeling buildings that are energy efficient. An Energy Smart Learning Center is a good place to start learning how to do it.
- Managed Wildlife Sanctuary
The 2,000 acre Lucky Star Ranch in Jefferson County may look like your typical northern New York landscape, but it's actually quite unique with 400 million year old rocks known as Alvar, forestland, wetlands, and a small lake. Today it's being turned into a managed wildlife sanctuary. However, it didn't start out that way.
Imagine how many different plants and bugs and species you could find in 2,000 acres of woods and wetlands. For over 100 SUNY-ESF students, the Lucky Star Ranch in the Town of Chaumont in Jefferson County is all theirs for 24 hours. Their job is to inventory as many living things as possible.
- Natural Approach to Vegetation
The vegetation along roadsides is often managed with harsh, synthetic herbicides, but New York State is looking to take a more natural approach, and SUNY-ESF is helping to determine just what that approach should be.
It may not be long before we see a shift in biofuel production as we expand the supply beyond corn ethanol.
"Here in New York State we have an abundant wood supply. The forest here in New York is growing about three times more rapidly than we're harvesting it," said Dr. Timothy Volk, ESF Senior Research Associate.
- Growing Food Locally
Growing more food locally helps the economy and the environment but northeastern winter weather stands in the way.
Morrisville State College is working on a way to extend the growing season to year round.
- Walleye Research
One of New York State's most popular game fish is walleye, plentiful in waterways from the Saint Lawrence River and Oneida Lake to the Oswego River and Conesus Lake. However, researchers have discovered that sediment in habitual waterways could actually hinder the production of these popular game fish.
- Recycling Electronics
A new law in New York now makes manufacturers responsible for disposal and recycling of old electronic gadgets like computers, televisions, game consoles and so on.
- Rescue Mission Recycling Operation
We've been recycling for 50 years now. We've been green for a long time and here's what the Rescue Mission recycling operation has evolved into; a 60,000 square foot warehouse where 37 employees sort and process 12 and a half tons of clothing, toys, furniture, kitchenware and other items every day, seven days a week.
- Emerald Ash Borer Insecticide
The ash trees are in serious jeopardy from a tiny insect called an Emerald Ash Borer and so far no way has been found to stop the devastation.
- Carbon Footprint
A national effort mandated by the federal government requires that communities work to reduce their carbon footprint and wastewater runoff and because it's national, that's means New York State must comply.
- Litter Cleanup
Tossing an empty cup on the roadside or sidewalk doesn't seem like that big a deal but when it happens millions of times it pumps up the cost of litter cleanup nationwide to almost $11.5 billion.
- Photovoltaic Panels
The Binghamton City Water System covers a lot of territory.
"Our water system serves more than 44,000 people through 14,200 service connections and wholesales to parts of the towns of Binghamton, Dickinson, and Vestal. In the last year alone we pumped more than 2.2 billion gallons of water," said Mayor Matt Ryan, Binghamton.
- Self-sustaining Streetlights
SU Professors Michael Pelken and Thong Dang have embarked on a mission to revolutionize the world of outdoor lighting with a self-sustaining streetlight.
- Home Solar Power Panels
If you installed solar power panels on your home, just how much power could be produced even in the wintertime?
- Living Snow Fence
You may not even realize why these shrub willows exist along the roadside. Yes, they are a part of nature, but they've been planted along specific roadways for a reason: to keep the blowing snow that swirls throughout open fields off the roadways.
- Sustainable Design
This 98-year-old building has a new lease on life while setting a new standard for sustainable design and providing a high quality workspace. At the same time, the ecological rehab of the building is also saving money.
- Artificial Lighting
Most office buildings in Central New York use an average of 100,000 British Thermal Units of energy per square foot per year.
Energy use in this building is 80 percent less. One way they did it was by reducing the amount of artificial lighting.
- Lake Cleanups
When this snow melts, or there's a rainstorm, the water runs off into Geddes Brook and with it mercury and other chemicals are carried into Nine Mile Creek that then end up in Onondaga Lake.
- The ReStore
"It's part of our mission, really. What we do here is try to take something that has life still and let it continue to live in another house," said Alicia Sierrawolfe, The ReStore General Manager.
- Emerald Ash Borer Approaches Hudson River
The emerald ash borer is lethal to a very popular tree in New York State, the ash tree. It was first discovered in the western part of the state, Cattaraugus County, in 2009.
"Unfortunately, last year we found a very large infestation in Ulster County and that infestation is also believed to be in Greene County too right up against the western shore of the Hudson River. That is where we see the front line of the emerald ash borer movement east so we're putting a lot effort this year into determining the exact location of this invasive species working with the United States Forest Service and several other state partners," said Rob Davies, NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.
- Water Bottle Project
These Manlius Pebble Hill elementary students don't mess around. When it comes to water, they're armed with stainless steel bottles that they can keep full all day. It's called the water bottle project. The object is to avoid buying and using plastic bottles that can ultimately harm the earth.
- Plug-in Hybrid Electric Cars
Carmela Peters is driving her Toyota Prius on phantom power.
"When I take off from a standing still point, it's kind of a slow pick up, but I don't mind because I know I'm saving electricity," said Carmela Peters, SUNY-ESF student.
- Green Dormitories
This new college dormitory is uniquely designed to be built and used with minimal impact on the environment. In other words, it is more than just green building design and green fixtures and green appliances.
- Road Salt Harmful for the Environment
"New York State is one of the highest users of rock salt in the country. New York State uses over a million tons of rock salt a year," said James Craw, Village of Fayetteville Superintendent of Public Works.
- Alternatives to Road Salt
We see the monstrous creatures every winter on the highways around the Northeast: Snowplows. And they dominate icy roadways, casting upwards of 200 pounds of salt per lane mile to keep our vehicles from sliding off the road.
- Changing the Recycling Process
The familiar blue bin won't be decorating as many curbsides as recycling companies change the collection process.
As recycling companies switch to a single stream, where the items are sorted and separated after they reach the plant, it offers a way make the collection process more efficient and save money.
In an effort to join the ranks of those 'going green,' you may find yourself in this aisle of the grocery store. This aisle provides 'green' cleaning products for a bit more than your standard cleaning products. The idea is to give you piece of mind that you're helping the environment by buying 'environmentally friendly' cleaning supplies. But are they really friendly?
- E-Waste Recycling
E-waste recycling days like this one held in Rochester are necessary because of the hazardous materials in electronic gadgets like televisions, computers, radios, game consoles and cell phones.
- Combined Heat and Power
Half of the electrical power used by this house and half of the heat needed for the winter is coming from a CHP, or combined heat and power energy system.
- New Parking Lot Designed to Prevent Erosion
To a casual observer, this may look like a run-of-the-mill parking lot but it's not. It's designed to prevent erosion and equipped to regulate runoff from melting snow and heavy rain events.
- Racing To Conserve Energy
Conservation is an easy and inexpensive way to save money and reduce your carbon footprint.
The problem is, it means changing your lifestyle but at Medaille College in Western New York they are using peer pressure, prizes and competition through a racing theme to motivate students to change.
- Cooling Computers Saves Energy
Anyone who has ever used a laptop on his or her lap knows how much heat even a small computer like that can generate. Now, imagine a large room full of larger computer systems generating heat and using up a lot of energy doing it. However, that's not the case in the SU-IBM Data Center at Syracuse University.
It sounds too simple to be true but it is conserving on energy use can be both cost effective and fairly painless. One conservation measure businesses and institutions are ramping up is called de-lamping, another term for turning out the lights.
- Brownfield Golf Courses
Chambers Bay on Puget Sound in Washington State was the site of the 2010 U. S. Amateur Golf Championship. It's hard to believe it was once a mining quarry, home to a paper mill and lumber operation, in other words, a brownfield, a place where industrial activity might generate hazardous waste making it difficult to redevelop the land for safe use but brownfields are popular places for golf courses.
- Keeping the Golf Course Green
The typical golf course that relies on pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and irrigation systems to maintain a beautiful green carpet is giving way to new courses that rely on a more organic approach.
- Improving Solar Panels
Solar power is a great alternative to fossil fuels but it can be too expensive for many people to make the switch, but changes are in the making to so it more affordable.
- Teaching Teachers Alternative Energy
It was a workshop teaching teachers to teach their students about alternative energy resources, like wind turbines.
- Green Lawns, Beautiful Lawns
Everybody likes a beautiful lawn. The thing is there are different definitions of what a great lawn really looks like. Some people need it to be absolutely pristine without a weed to be seen. Others, you know, as long as it's green it really doesn't matter.
- Affordable Sustainable Housing
Affordable housing can also be sustainable, energy-efficient housing - case in point, a new 66-unit senior citizen apartment complex recently dedicated in Ulster County.
- Running on Wood instead of Gasoline
Imagine a pick-up truck that runs on wood instead of gasoline. That's what Rick Bates did and he built a gasifier in the bed of his truck to do it.
- Recycling Your Old Refrigerator/Freezer
Customers of National Grid have a chance to make money two ways in the refrigerator version of the cash- for-clunkers program. The idea is the same. In one case, older and less-efficient cars and trucks were taken out of service. Now, older inefficient refrigerators and freezers are targeted for recycling.
- Lake George: Eliminating Pollution
A $12-million project is underway to eliminate the single largest source of pollution fouling Lake George, nicknamed the "Queen of American Lakes".
- Weather Stations and Air Temperature Patterns
A study of city air temperature patterns is underway to learn how trees and tree cover can influence temperature fluctuations, and temperature has a big impact on energy use for heating and cooling urban buildings.
- Deconstruction vs. Demolition
Green construction practices are becoming more the norm. This parking lot, for example, is being built with a rain garden, porous pavement and an underground storage system to keep storm water runoff from reaching creeks and waterways.
Here is another example, the partial deconstruction of these houses before they're demolished.
- Urban Wind Turbines for Power
Very soon, a new power generating wind turbine will sit atop this building as a demonstration project to bring this renewable energy resource into urban use.
- New Biofuel Study
New York sources of biofuel made from wood, grass and other forms of biomass could substantially reduce our consumption of gasoline and reduce greenhouse gas emissions according to a report from the Pace Law School's Energy and Climate Center.
- Energy From Exercise
It's is a pretty typical scene in a physical fitness center. There are a number of people at work on the 20 or so elliptical machines. But this physical fitness center at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts near the border with New York is different.
- Home Energy Systems
When you hear the brand name Panasonic, you think of televisions, camcorders, phones, computers, electronic stuff. But there's something completely different in the works, the development of a low or even zero emission carbon footprint home lifestyle.
- Disposal of Electronics
Big screen TVs, computers, DVD players, all the electronic products we can't live without all have what manufacturers call an end of life moment and the question becomes how to dispose of the item or recycle it.
- Hybrid Bicycle
Everyone knows a bicycle is a great alternative to a fossil fuel burning automobile to get from here to there, but a lot of people are dissuaded by the prospect of riding uphill
- Biomass Power Plant
This power plant, once fueled by natural gas, is being converted to run on biomass, biomass like trees and shrub willow.
- Greening Fort Drum
The Army's Fort Drum near Watertown is becoming greener by incorporating green features into major construction projects.
- Building Smaller Homes
Bigger isn't necessarily better, in fact, there's a push by many advocates encouraging people to think smaller because structures like smaller houses are easier to sustain.
- Green Infrastructure
This may look like an ordinary road and parking lot construction project but it's not. It's being built with green infrastructure.
- Constructed Wetlands
This is what most people envision of a wastewater treatment plant, but there's a more low-tech system called constructed wetlands.
- By-Products into Energy
The Village of Minoa is looking to reduce the cost of operating its wastewater treatment facility by turning one of the by-products into energy.
- Anaerobic Digester
The Minoa Wastewater Treatment Facility generates about 25,000 gallons of biosolids every week, waste that now goes to a landfill but it's waste that can be turned into energy.
- Turning Food Waste into Energy
Turning food waste into compost is a fairly common practice. It's even being done on a larger municipal scale. But is there a way to turn food waste into energy?
- Increasing the Use of Solar Power
Solar panel installers should see a lot more work by the end of this year through contracts with the New York Power Authority.
One hundred megawatts of new solar power is being proposed through a public - private partnership announced recently by Governor David Paterson. The project will increase the amount of solar power produced in New York State by five times.
- Asian Carp
There's a new invasive species threatening the Great Lakes, Asian carp. Some species of Asian carp can grow up to four feet long and weigh between fifty to one hundred pounds and they can be a physical hazard.
- Food for Thought
We're all pretty familiar with Christmas trees, tree limbs, leaves, and grass being turned into mulch or compost but what about food waste.
- Indoor Composting
In the wintertime, people composting outdoors are not getting much accomplished because it's cold outside. There is an alternative that is done indoors, vermi-composting. All you need is a bin the size of a recycling bin; a container for your food waste; shredded paper: peat moss; some dirt or compost: and the key ingredient, worms to do the work.
Michael Amadori is working on a project that involves fish, leftovers and several heads of lettuce. No, he's not preparing a meal. Using aquaponics, Amadori is testing the use of food waste to grow fish and food. He's using the leftovers to feed the fish. The leftovers are dried and molded into pellets. The idea is to utilize food scraps that would normally go to waste.
- Electric Cars
They're expecting electric cars to grow in popularity for some people they're already popular, like Greg Tyler, an assistant professor at Morrisville State College, who bought a used electric car and fixed it up.
- Not Letting the Waste go to Waste - Part Two
The electricity running through this display panel is being produced by an internal combustion engine powered by methane gas coming from this methane digester supplied by the manure from some 300 cows on the Morrisville State College dairy farm.
- Not Letting the Waste go to Waste - Part One
These dairy cows produce a lot of manure. Each cow produces around 14 gallons of effluent per day but Morrisville State College is not letting the waste go to waste.
- Trail Maintenance
When you hear about people doing trail maintenance, here is what they're doing in the fall of the year. The ESF soccer teams volunteered to clean up the trail on Goodnow Mountain in the Adirondacks and that means a lot of raking because leaves on a trail create a serious problem. After instructions, the volunteers take their tools and head up the trail.
- Gold Medal for Green
It's hard to believe but this 4,800 square foot home is the winner of the Gold Medal for Green Sustainability from the National Association of Home Builders. Marc Antony Contracting built the house for the Syracuse Parade of Homes with that goal in mind.
- New Homes Equipped With Alternative Energy Sources
More and more new homes are coming on the market more environmentally friendly with more alternative energy sources.
"There's a component that's market driven and people are out there looking for green features in homes. People don't want homes where the indoor air quality isn't good for their children. People don't want homes where they feel the materials used in the construction weren't used responsibility," said Paul Crovella, Construction Management at SUNY-ESF.
- Geothermal Heating
Welcome to the world of geothermal heating and cooling for your home. This unit doesn't look much different from the furnace you'll find in the basement of most homes but note the two pipes on the right side.
- Sustainable Solar Home
One of the most fascinating exhibits at this year's great New York State Fair is this completely sustainable solar home constructed entirely by Cornell University students and we had a chance to take a look inside.
- From Temple to Green Hotel
This former temple has been vacant and crumbling away for years. Now, using new state tax credits for renovating historic buildings, Syracuse developers say they're going to turn it into a hotel, a hotel that's a model of green technology.
- Emerald Ash Borer - Part Two
Researchers are using the solitary digger wasp as an early warning system for a beetle that kills ash trees. The emerald ash borer was recently discovered in Randolph, N.Y. so monitoring sites are being developed across the state.
- Emerald Ash Borer - Part One
Ash trees are being killed by beetles called the emerald ash borer.
- Solar Homes
Thousands of people saw this solar house on display at the New York State Fair; a 900 square foot home with a very unique design that doesn't need power from a utility.
- Great Lakes Compact
The Great Lakes Compact, governing the use and protection of Lakes Ontario, Erie, Huron, Michigan and Superior, has been ratified by the eight states and two Canadian Provinces bordering the lakes, plus both federal governments. The next step is implementing the agreement.
- The Tech Garden
New York State is putting up the seed money to grow green jobs. Recently, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority awarded $1.5-million to the Center for Green Tech Entrepreneurship at The Tech Garden in Syracuse.
- Lemoyne College Introduces LED Lights
LeMoyne College is putting a big spotlight on a lighting revolution, LEDs or light emitting diodes and it started with a lighting change in just a couple of offices.
- Wind Turbines Becoming More Popular
People are getting used to seeing the giant wind turbines of Madison County and up on the Tug Hill Plateau and they're beginning to see more and more residential size wind turbines.
- Root of the Problem: Trees Die From Damaged Root System
We often don't appreciate the trees in our neighborhoods until they're gone, and most often, trees die off too soon because we've done something to the root system.
- Going Green in the Workplace
Human resource managers are bringing the green movement into the workplace. At a recent conference of the Central New York Society for Human Resource Management they devoted time to designing green behaviors in the workplace.
- Students Compete in EcoCAR Challenge
Engineering students from 17 universities in the U.S. and Canada are in the three-year EcoCar challenge to build a more fuel-efficient car. Among those students is Albany area native Ryan Meisert, a PhD candidate at Georgia Tech.
- The American Chestnut
This is one of two plots of the largest planting of transgenic American chestnut, a big step forward toward the reintroduction of this species. One hundred fifty transgenic American chestnut trees were planted to see if they are resistant to the chestnut blight and how they interact with soil and insects
- Computer Data Center
A new and innovative computer data center is under construction, a computer data center that's supposed to cut energy use by half.
- Fort Edward Distribution Center
The 150-acre site in Fort Edward, New York is now the processing site for the PCB clean up of the Hudson River. But six years from now planners hope to take advantage of a new rail and water transport system to create a giant food distribution center.
- Solid Waste
Sixty-six percent of all solid waste in Onondaga County that used to go to a landfill is being recycled, while nationally that percentage is only in the upper 20s. The Onondaga County Resource Recovery Agency is running an advertising campaign looking for more.
- Energy Auditing, Saving
A multi-million dollar energy savings project is underway in the East Syracuse-Minoa School District that requires no taxpayer dollars.
- Backyard Coyotes
More and more New York backyards are home to a growing number of coyotes.
- Expanding Oswego Harbor
A multi-million dollar expansion of the Oswego Harbor is in the planning stage. The three and a half to four million-dollar expansion is potentially very big.
- Hotels Going Green
The Sheraton Syracuse University Hotel and Conference Center is one three finalists for the Good Earthkeeping Award from the New York Hospitality and Tourism Association.
- Soil Erosion
Soil erosion from rain and wind produces water quality issues in streams, rivers and lakes, degrades soil quality, and affects human health. Sediment in and of itself suffocates a lot of aquatic habitat but it also acts as a magnet to carry other things that aren't very good for our water environment.
- Helping Construction Sites Go Green
Construction sites can be a big source of environmental problems if there isn't good planning to deal with soil erosion and sediment control. Too often it's an afterthought.
- Electronics are Going Green - Part Two
Consumers and activists are looking for greener electronic products. "We're looking for manufacturers to phase out the use of toxic chemicals, to run their products energy efficiently, help combat climate change and we're looking for free and global take to these products don't end up as e-waste in developing countries around the world," said Casey Harrell, Toxics Campaigner for Greenpeace International.
- Electronics are Going Green - Part One
All the newest toys were on display at this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and many of them are trying to become more eco-friendly, like this new green TV.
- Indoor Air Quality
At the new headquarters of the Center of Excellence in Syracuse, they will be studying all aspects of indoor air quality, but in order to understand indoor air quality you have to understand the quality of the air outdoors and that's exactly what Dr. Myron Mitchell and his colleagues at Clarkson and Cornell Universities are doing.
- Environmentally Friendly Insulation and Packaging Material
A new company, headquartered in Troy, New York, is going green with environmentally friendly insulation and packaging material made with mushrooms.
- Urban Forests - Part Two
The urban forest provides a multitude of benefits. The trees in the parks and along the city streets help remove air pollution, provide carbon sequestration, energy conservation and protection against ultraviolet radiation. So you might think the more trees a city has, the better.
- Urban Forests - Part One
Over my shoulder is a great view of the city. You see large buildings that create a distinctive city skyline, roadways from busy interstates to residential side streets, and forest.
- Home Heating Issues
Most people find out they have home heating problems in the winter. Cold temperatures combined with icy winds quickly demonstrate any weaknesses in your home heating system, like too much outside air getting inside.
- Keep Your Heat From Escaping
This time of year is a great time to look for evidence of home heating inefficiencies, like icicles and roofs where the snow melts very quickly, and where the snow melts first on your roof is a clue to where heat is escaping explains Paul Crovella, an instructor in sustainable construction management.
- Reducing Car vs. Deer Accidents - Part Two
Car vs. deer collisions in New York State are no small matter. There are 40,000 - 50,000 car vs. deer collisions reported every year. USGS research biologist Brian Underwood is positive there are many more accidents than that.
- Reducing Car vs. Deer Accidents - Part One
Why do deer cross the road where they do? New research has found some answers that might help reduce the number of car/deer collisions.
- Fuel Efficient Cars
More and more alternative energy vehicles are hitting the highway. Hybrids are becoming more commonplace. We even have mass transit fleets converting to hybrids. We also have more vehicles are running on biodiesel but here's something new, how about an electric vehicle that runs on hydrogen?
- Cool Waters for Cooling Buildings
There is a plan in the works to use water from Lake Ontario to air condition buildings in the city of Syracuse. Dr. James Hassett is the Director of the Central New York Chilled Water Project.
- Solar-Powered Trash Compactors
This is what trash looks like in a typical receptacle but here at Syracuse University, Chief Sustainability Officer Steve Lloyd says there is a new alternative that is more sustainable.
- Spotting Dangerous Trees
We've all seen the heavy damage that can be done when violent winds or ice and snowstorms whip through our neighborhoods. Trees topple on cars, homes, and take out power lines. Homeowners can prevent some of the damage by spotting dangerous trees and removing them before a storm hits.
- Environmentally Friendly Holiday Gifts
The holiday season is upon us, which usually translates into a lot of shopping and gift giving, and that can become a bad thing. Particularly around the holidays we just amass so much waste. It's an incredible assault on the earth every year, right around this time of year. There's a huge amount of stuff being purchased much of which ends up in landfills.
- Cutting Down Real Christmas Trees
This is a balsam fir, one of the many different evergreens that can be used as a Christmas tree for the holiday season. A lot of people, though, really question the sustainability of cutting down a living tree to enjoy it for such a short period of time.
- Renewable Energy
When we talk about alternative energy sources, the conversation usually revolves around wind or solar power but a good case can be made to include wood in that circle. It's a renewable energy resource that's readily available in New York.
- Wood Burning Technology
Wood burning technology has advanced to such a point that you can heat your home with roughly six to eight cords of wood over the winter months. Now if you choose to go off the grid like that, how much land would you need to own in order to produce that much wood?
- Heating our Homes
It looks like the future could be a return to our past when it comes to heating our homes. A hundred years most people heated their homes with wood and a lot of people are making the move back to wood with systems that are more efficient and a lot less polluting.
- Invasive Plant Species
This is a classic example of an invasive plant species. What makes it invasive, among other things; it has the ability to overrun native plants. You need to be aware of this so you can avoid installing invasive plants in your landscape.
- Seaside Goldenrods Found in CNY
Thriving populations of seaside goldenrod have been found in Central New York, a plant that was previously thought to have vanished from upstate New York.
- Going Green with Lighting
Nationwide, about 20 to 25 percent of our electrical use is for lighting so our homes are a good place to conserve energy and save money. Homebuilders have gotten the message from buyers and are doing a lot to build in efficient lighting systems, like motion sensors to turn lights off.
- New Homes Built With Concern For Water Conservation
Today we're all concerned about water quality and water conservation. Now, more homes are being built with that in mind.
- Energy Efficiency Goes Beyond Doors and Windows
Energy efficiency in new home construction is way beyond windows, doors, and insulation. Today it's all about controlling airflow in your indoor environment.
- Colleges Working to Reduce Energy Consumption
More and more colleges and universities are working to reduce their energy consumption and lower their carbon footprint. Many are being spurred on by their students, like at St. Lawrence University in Northern New York.
- A Change at the Bird Feeder
You may soon notice a change of clientele at your birdfeeder because of climate change. New York State's bird population is changing as birds from the Mid-Atlantic States move north and New York birds shift north into Canada.
- Safe Drinking Water
Safe drinking water is a high priority and for most of us, our water comes through a filtration system but the City of Syracuse taps Skaneateles Lake and it's so pure no filtration system is needed.
- Bioretention Basin
Rainwater from most buildings ends up in the storm sewer system and that's a big concern because many storm systems are combined with sanitary sewage systems and heavy rain means untreated sewage and other contaminants pollute our streams and lakes. This building is different. Let's head up to the roof to see how it works.
- Teachers Take Part in Research Opportunities
Researchers are doing a lot of work on Lake Ontario and one group of middle and high school science teachers had a special opportunity to get involved as part of a summer cruise aboard the Lake Guardian.
This walkway is being surfaced with something that's very green. Not green in color, green as in environmentally friendly. It's called Flexi-Pave and it's made from recycled tires and stone.
- Green Roofs
If you're looking for a way to keep your home or your business cool in the summer and warmer in the winter you may want to consider a green roof. There are other advantages as well as landscape architect Scott Shannon explains.
- Indoor Contaminants
How many times have you heard, wipe your feet before you come in the house? Well it turns out that is not only good advice to keep your house clean, it turns out to be good for your health. And Dr. David Johnson explains why.
- Plastic versus Paper Bags
You know, when we go to the grocery store we all face the decision, do we use plastic bags or do we use paper bags to be more environmentally friendly? As it turns out, neither is a good choice, according to Dr. Jack Manno.
- Using Wood Chips for Energy
We all know we need alternatives to petroleum for the fuels we use. Instead of using food for fuel, like taking this corn and turning it into ethanol, maybe we should look at something like wood, which is already a fuel as an even more efficient alternative.
- Low Emissions Asphalt
We drive along our streets and highways without giving much thought to the pavement beneath but the traditional method for making asphalt is not very eco-friendly. Now, there is a way to make blacktop green.
- Saving Heritage Trees
Dr. Chuck Maynard and Dr. Bill Powell explain how test tube technology may be key to once again helping American elm and American chestnut again grace New York State and much of North America.
- Photovoltaic Array
It's overcast, it's raining lightly but surprisingly these solar panels on the roof of Walters Hall are still generating electricity according to Mike Kelleher here at SUNY-ESF.
Particles so small, we need powerful microscopes to see them. They hold the key to making plastic stronger and biodegradable. They're nanocrystals and commercial use could be just a few years away.
- Shrub Willow
Shrub willow is an excellent renewable resource because it grows so fast. How fast? Just over a year ago, this plot was harvested when it was 30 feet tall and now you can see it's already re-grown to the better part of ten feet.
- Revitalizing Ontario, NY
Thanks to the SUNY-ESF Center for Community Design Research, the residents of Ontario now have a vision plan for the revitalization of their downtown.
- Wood Chips into Plastic
You know this may look like ordinary plastic, but it isn't. In fact, it comes from wood chips. Now we're here in the lab of Dr. Jim Nakas at SUNY-ESF and he's going to explain how in fact we get from wood chips to this.
- Picking the Right Tree
Nothing enhances an urban neighborhood like healthy trees and the New York DEC wants to help cities across the state plant more of them. Trees not only help beautify communities, they're also very effective air filters and can dramatically reduce temperatures during the summer. The key is to plant the right tree in the right place as Dr. Don Leopold at SUNY-ESF explains.
- Sackets Harbor
Going Green on Sackets Harbor