Thursday, November 5, 2009

Superfund Designation Letter Writing Campaign Gets Results so Please Continue Writing!!‏


We wanted to thank those of you who participated in the letter writing campaign to Congresswoman Yvette Clarke. Although we do not know how many of you sent the letter we posted, we do know that your efforts resulted in a meeting with members of assorted local civic organizations and Rep Clarke's staff.

On Friday, October 30th, a video teleconference took place at Rep Clarke's Brooklyn office. At that meeting, we learned that Congresswoman Clarke had arranged a meeting with EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson that took place on Tuesday, November 3rd.

Attendees from local civic groups who attended the Friday meeting at Rep Clarke's office took the opportunity to express their concerns and to ask for Rep Clarke's assistance in taking out the politics in this Superfund designation process. We hoped that Rep Clarke would use her time with Administrator Jackson to stress the importance of the science rather than the political agenda(s) of any group or group(s). It is simply impossible for anyone to ignore or trivialize the percentage of toxins in that canal sediment

Deanna Bitetti, Legislative Aide to Rep Clarke assured us that a response to the letters received and an update on the meeting with Administrator Jackson would follow within a day or two.

We have not heard anything yet. We anxiously await news from our Congressional representative.

But, we did want to let you know that for those of you who took the time to cut and paste the letter, send it and then resend it when you had trouble with the official website, your efforts did make a difference.

There is a true solidarity and spirit of unity in this community that has been forged by our shared views on this most important environmental and health issue. One distinguished community member accurately describes this situation as, "the environmental challenge of our lifetime."

We must continue to let our elected officials know that we still care, that we are still very much in favor of the designation---and communicating this information through email directly to them and their staff is indeed, effective.

On that note, we ask you to continue contacting them---resend them the letter posted below---or if possible, send them one in your own words.....For your convenience, we are re posting the letter and including the email addresses of each of our electeds.

After copy and pasting, simply type in the name of the individual elected at the top , and signoff with your name and address at the bottom...Thank you all so much


Please copy past your letter and send it to the addresses listed below!

Write “ATTN SUPERFUND DESIGNATION!” in the subject.

For your convenience we have re-copied the letter we have posted at our blog. You can also write your own letter!

Please do not forget to "sign" the cut and pasted letter with your name and full address---this is very important!

Dear ________ :

We are residents of the Gowanus area. Our neighborhoods may have different names such as Carroll Gardens or Park Slope, but we are the people whose lives are touched every single day by the deplorable condition of the Gowanus Canal.

We are the people who applauded Commissioner Grannis's request to nominate this open sewer to the National Priorities List.
We are the people who signed a petition in support of that nomination. We are the people who attended the multiple meetings held in our community.

We are the people who obediently sent in our comments to the Environmental Protection Agency in the prescribed, timely manner and we are the people who have been waiting patiently for science and common sense to lead our Canal into the healthier life the Superfund designation would offer us all.

We are the people who are beginning to strongly feel that what residents want is of no importance; that the desires of those who stand to benefit financially somehow trumps the health of those who inhabit the area.

We are your constituents. Our pro designation comments represent the majority and we ask that you speak on our behalf.
The Gowanus Canal must be added to the National Priorities List. It must be designated a Superfund site. Work must begin with the sole motivation of improving public health and the environment.

No other plan, no other dream, no other ambition is more important.

No other course of action should be permitted to take precedence over the health of Gowanus area residents and our children.
The EPA indicated in those community meetings that they are ready, willing and able to proceed.

We are the people. Represent us, please. Call E.P.A. Administrator Lisa Jackson

Signed, XXXX

Address, XXXX

For Congresswoman Clarke

For President Obama

For Governor Paterson

For Senator Schumer,

For Senator Gillibrand,


With the "Protect Our Homes" petition, CORD was formed in May, 2007. This petition arose as an overwhelmingly negative response to the coming of the over-sized 360 Smith Street Development at the corner of Smith Street and Second Place (Aka Oliver House; aka 131 Second Place). This petition, which had well over three thousand signatures, led to a new zoning text amendment in summer of 2008.

To: Our Elected Officials, Community Leaders, The MTA:
(MAY, 2007)

We the undersigned Carroll Gardens homeowners and residents, are appalled by the "as of right" ruling which allows owners and developers to erect buildings in our neighborhood with no regard to the impact they will present to our quality of life and the value of our homes........