Connection Failure 2 0 0 1 3 3 7 0 9 4 3 3 Federated Conservationists of Westchester County | Historical Issues
Historical Issues

As the premier environmental watchdog in Westchester, the organization’s advocacy efforts have influenced local, county, and state governments on many issues, including the following highlights:

1965 to 1970
  • Worked to increase local and county recycling
  • Worked to close the Croton Point landfill, located on the Hudson River in a wetlands area
  • Opposed channelizing Westchester’s rivers to prevent flooding
  • Helped pass NYS General Municipal Law (GML) Section 239-x in 1970, establishing Conservation Advisory Councils

1970s
  • Focused attention on the storage of nuclear power plant waste and Indian Point evacuation policies
  • Improved protection of wetlands and the water quality of the Hudson River, Long Island Sound, and other water bodies
  • Worked to get the Tidal and Freshwater Wetlands laws and State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) enacted into state law
  • Promoted environmental review of all proposed real estate developments
  • Helped communities set up Conservation Advisory Councils under the 1970 New York state law and sought lay representation on the new County Environmental Management Council in 1973

1980s
  • Spurred the environmental review of the Peekskill Resource Recovery plant
  • Worked for passage of the first New York State Bottle Bill in 1982
  • Promoted energy and water conservation
  • Worked on issues of pesticide safety
  • Worked for nearly a decade to preserve the 170-acre natural area by Playland Lake in Rye as a park known as the Edith G. Read Natural Park and Wildlife Sanctuary (named to honor the conservationist and FCWC Board member who worked so diligently in the preservation effort)
  • Played a key role in presenting to the Westchester County Board of Legislators the need for a local law to designate Critical Environmental Areas Supported the addition of the Lasdon estate in Somers to the Westchester County park system

1990s
  • Worked with local partners to have the Jay Property preserved as an historic resource
  • Helped defeat massive development plans for Davids Island in Long Island Sound (FCWC supports a county park on the island. Read our position paper)
  • Supported the Long Island Sound Task Force’s Citizen Water Monitoring Project
  • Helped implement the Habitat Protection for Biodiversity in Westchester County Project together with the Department of Environmental Conservation and the Wildlife Conservation Society
  • Including spearheading efforts to identify habitats and species in country parks, resulting in the designation of biodiversity preserves in Ward Pound Ridge Reservation
  • Supported and urged mass transit alternatives to reduce traffic, air pollution, and sprawl and also limiting the impact of Westchester County Airport

2000-2005
  • Led the effort for Westchester County to acquire Davids Island for parkland
  • Took an active role through individual Board members in the County’s Watershed Advisory Committees (WACs) effort with local reservoirs, rivers, and streams
  • Promoted energy conservation, efficiency, and green buildings with a county-wide two-day Energy Expo at the County Center
  • Helped pass the Pesticide Neighbor Notification law in Westchester
  • Focused attention on urban environmental issues such as brownfields
  • Worked to protect the quality of the drinking water in the Croton Watershed
  • Held several air pollution roundtable discussions and identified the non-attainment status as defined by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), including spearheading the Healthy Air for Westchester Campaign (HAWC) and chairing the County Healthy Air Task Force, resulting in the successful adoption of air quality policies ahead of federal mandates
  • Worked for remediation of the Hudson River PCBs
  • Was instrumental in winning an extension of the legal agreement with the airlines that provides a ceiling on the number of Westchester County Airport commercial passenger flights and passengers