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CCE PRESS CENTER

PRESS STATEMENT

For immediate release:
Thursday, August 4, 2016
For more information contact:
Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director, 516-390-7150, 631-384-1378 (mobile), aesposito@citizenscampaign.org

GOVERNOR CUOMO SAYS NO TO DREDGE DUMPING IN LONG ISLAND SOUND!

CCE joins Governor Cuomo to Call on EPA to Stop Dredge Spoil Dumping Plan in Eastern LIS.

Farmingdale, NY - Governor Cuomo is calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to stop the designation of additional long term dumpsites for dredge material in the eastern Long Island Sound. In 2005, New York State opposed a plan to continue dumping dredge material in the Long Island Sound. This led to the historic agreement between New York, Connecticut, EPA and the Army Corps; which mandated the focus of beneficial reuse of dredged material and the reduction of open water dumping. However, EPA is now moving forward with expanding additional long term dump sites in the eastern portion of LIS. Governor Cuomo is joining environmental groups, community stakeholders, and elected officials to announce that New York State will sue the EPA in order to prevent dredge dumping in the eastern Long Island Sound.

Adrienne Esposito, Executive Director for Citizens Campaign for the Environment, issued the following statement:

“Governor Cuomo’s stance is a clear and thrilling victory in our protection efforts to protect Long Island Sound. Environmental and civic groups have consistently and rigorously opposed the dredge dumping scheme. The public loves this water body and has always considered the Long Island Sound to be an extension of our home. We consider the Sound as our front yard, or our back yard but never as a junk yard. We expect the EPA to protect the Sound, not pollute the Sound.

New York is again standing up to protect our national treasure—The Long Island Sound. A decade ago the EPA had a plan to dump 20 million cubic yards of dredge spoils in the Long Island Sound. Now, the plan is to dump 30 million cubic yards of over the next 30 years. The public has said no, environmental and civic groups have said no, and now the Governor is saying NO. Millions of dollars have gone into the restoration of the Sound. This summer we once again see humpback whales visiting the Sound, a sign that our restoration efforts are working. A reckless plan to increase dumping of dredged material thwarts continued progress.

Over the last year, CCE generated 15,000 petition signatures from NY and CT residents opposing dredge dumping in the Sound. These petition signatures were submitted to the Army Corps and EPA during public comment periods. In addition, over 600 letters were generated to Governor Cuomo, 600 to Senator Gillibrand, and 600 to the NY Secretary of State from NY residents, over 1,000 letters to the Army Corps from NY and CT residents, and over 1,000 letters to the EPA from CT residents - all calling for a stop to dredge dumping and urging their state and federal officials to focus instead on beneficial reuse.

CCE collaborated with key stakeholder organizations and sent a letter to Governor Cuomo, signed by 25 stakeholder groups, urging him to stop the Army Corps and EPA from moving forward with dredge dumping. The EPA has clearly chosen to ignore the public on this issue, but it will be intensely more challenging for the EPA to ignore a legal challenge. CCE applauds Governor Cuomo for once again standing with New Yorkers to protect our beloved waterways and committing to stop the continued dumping of dredge spoils in the eastern Long Island Sound.” 

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Citizens Campaign for the Environment (CCE) empowers communities and advocates solutions for our shared environment and public health and is supported by over 80,000 members throughout New York State and Connecticut. www.citizenscampaign.org

updated by jchristensen  8/4/16