Healthy Communities

About Our Healthy Communities Work: Chemicals—including heavy metals, such as mercury and lead, as well as manmade chemicals—are always around us, whether we realize it or not. Humans and wildlife are exposed to chemicals in myriad ways: through food, dust, clothing, and incinerator pollution, not to mention as a result of the toxic products dumped into landfills, which leach chemicals into our ground and drinking water. Even small amounts of chemical exposure have been linked with neurological harm, endocrine and reproductive disorders, cancers, learning disabilities, and birth defects.

Environmental Advocates of New York is focused on reducing our exposure to dangerous chemicals and requiring chemical producers and distributors to share information about such chemicals so the public can be better educated about potential dangers.

It takes 15 minutes to eat takeout from a plastic foam container, and yet that container will outlive us by 500 years. On top of that, when heated, it leaches dangerous chemicals into the food you're eating or drinking.

NEXT WEEK, the New York City Council could vote on a common sense bill that will keep this needless plastic foam container waste from littering our sidewalks, clogging street drains, being eaten by animals, and leaching toxics into our food. 

And industry is working overtime to kill this measure, making your immediate action critical to our win!

**UPDATE: WE WON! 

It takes 15 minutes to eat takeout from a plastic foam container, and yet that container will outlive us by 500 years. On top of that, when heated, it leaches dangerous chemicals into the food you're eating or drinking.

Environmental advocates can lead the way to keep this needless waste from littering our sidewalks, clogging street drains, being eaten by animals, and leaching toxics into our food. 

New York's Billion Dollar Brownfields (November, 2013)

The State of New York has cut checks in excess of $1.14 billion dollars to fund the primary vehicle for cleaning up dangerous, contaminated brownfields statewide, a new analysis by Environmental Advocates of New York has found. And that price tag will continue to grow significantly as 321 more sites are currently enrolled in the program creating a multi-billion dollar public liability.  

SUNY Albany has been taking sustainability very seriously lately. They already offer a special sustainability residence hall and an initiative to label local foods in the dining hall. Perhaps their most ambitious initiative so far is the "50 by '15" campaign. This campaign hopes to increase the amount of food coming from local sources from 20% to 50% by 2015. The initiative is run by Office of Environmental Sustainability, University Auxiliary Services and Chartwells (the university’s food provider).

This August, Environmental Advocates of New York is trying something new which we hope you will be part of: Advocates’ Summer Camp.

It doesn’t require overnight stays or the pressure of coming up with a scary story at the campfire (as fun as that is), but participating in events statewide that support of our air, land, water and health, drawing on the best principles of summer camp – teamwork, leadership, and camaraderie.

We’re going on the road

You know that the small staff of Environmental Advocates works hard to advance smart solutions to protect our environment, and we sound the alarm when decision-makers attempt to chip away at our hard-fought safeguards. You help us hold elected officials accountable for what they do – or don’t do – to protect our air, land, water and communities.

Certain things never seem to go away. Some we prefer to keep and others we just can’t seem to get rid of.

Styrofoam will outlive each of us by at least 500 years. Made of toxic chemicals originally meant for construction, it is now used to serve food and drink and, when warmed, leaches into what we consume. Mmmmm Mmmmm!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Mushroom Materials can be used for a variety of building applications, including insulation, structural insulating panels and acoustical tiles. These materials have low or no VOCs (volatile organic compounds), are fire resistant, and perform similarly to traditional synthetic materials.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

If you’re planning a Memorial Day cookout, big or small, you’re probably tempted to reach for the old standbys: paper plates, plastic cutlery, canned beverages, and packaged meats. Unfortunately, along with ease and convenience, these American barbecue staples come with a lot of unnecessary waste and negative environmental impacts.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

To understand what a changing climate means for public health in Los Angeles, Julie Ann talked with Angelo Bellomo, Director of Environmental Health at Los Angeles County Department of Public Health.

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