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Ecowatchers powerpoint -rpa report


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Ecowatchers response to the RPA report that calls for the filling in and paviing over of hundreds of acres of Jamaica Bay Wildlife refuge

Ecowatchers response to the RPA report that calls for the filling in and paviing over of hundreds of acres of Jamaica Bay Wildlife refuge

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  • 1. Jamaica Bay Ecowatchers -A Response to the RPA report on JFK Expansion
  • 2.
    • Conference
    • RPA Report
    • Port Authority/JFK impact
    • Recommendations
    • Summary
  • 3.
    • The reason for our response and this meeting
    • Reports conclusion is that hundreds of acres be filled in and paved over
    • Hundreds in attendance no local environmental or civic groups invited
    • Report appeared to be endorsed by Christopher Ward Port Authority and all others in attendance
    • The theme not if but when and how soon
    • Presented as an environmental benefit to the bay
    • Response is necessary due to how this report has been released—1/27 conference and April 15- Large audiences –Business and political
  • 4.
    • RPA report
      • Lack of Environmental Groups input
      • Projections
      • Land access
      • Alternatives
      • Science
      • Impact on environment
      • History
      • Recommendations
  • 5.
    • Report two years in the making no attempt to reach out to any environmental groups
    • No attempt to elicit input from any civic or community groups
    • RPA working with many of these same groups on the Floyd Bennett Field project and took some of that input ie : shoreline restoration and FPF restoration as offsets
  • 6.
    • Premise for report and expansion is growth.
    • Growth is based on projections
    • Huge implications in aspects of the reports recommendations-- therefore basis, growth, should be accurate and certain
    • In order to attempt to determine the accuracy of the report we looked at the history of the FAA, Port Authority, MTA and RPA in Projections
  • 7.
    • Reviewed this report as well as:
      • 1947 RPA report-”airports of tomorrow”
      • 1969 RPA Report “The Regions Airports”
      • 1973 RPA “Regions Airports-Revisited”
      • 1993 RPA “working paper #13”
    • Discovered that past history of attempts to project long range numbers extremely inaccurate and always OVERSTATED
    • No projections could be found which estimated lower future growth numbers than actually occurred
  • 8.
    • 1947 -RPA report-- by 1960 air passengers will number 31.6 million MAP--- actual numbers 20 MAP
    • 1969 - MTA indicated that Air passengers would number 161 MAP by 1990 as opposed to the actual number of 75 MAP
    • 1973 - RPA projects that by 1990 projected to reach 129 million air passengers—actual numbers were 75 MAP
  • 9.
    YEAR PORT AUTH FAA RPA LOW RPA HIGH ACTUAL 1970 45.6 43.5 46.5 46.5 38 1980 91 123 91 107 52 1985 N/A 184 126 152 76 1990 N/A N/A 157 208 75 2000 N/A N/A 250 360 90 DATA FROM RPA REPORT THE REGIONS AIRPORTS 1969
  • 10.
    • Realistic Projections ---lowest projection is 121 million by 2030(port authority) –round it down as per historical data would indicate and perhaps an accurate range would between 115 MAP and 125 MAP.
    • This is more accurate and should be the basis for actions taken to address the actual need.
    • What can be done to accommodate that kind of growth.
  • 11.
    • Increased growth at JFK on a large scale will only lead to the same time in delays- only it will be in attempting to exit a facility that has inadequate land access to handle the current volume.
    • Almost 90% of non Manhattan bound ,and 80% of Manhattan Bound , travelers use some type of car transportation to commute to and from the airport.
    • “ Many of the roads leading to the three major airports suffer from serious traffic congestion for much of the day, clogged not only by the airport bound vehicles but also by those commuting to and from work and traveling for other purposes”
  • 12.
    • “ As air passenger traffic grows, the reliability of the roadway system is likely to decline even further, and options using autos, taxis and car services will become even more problematic.”
    • Ground access to the airport is problematic, the Van Wyck experiences chronic congestion (Level Of Service = F) on a daily basis and there are limited truck routes for air cargo.
    • Growth to 150 MAP would create an additional 21,000 vehicles a day commuting to JFK
  • 13.
    • . Options to expand highway capacity are very expensive and would have severe community impacts.
    • It is not practical to encourage growth to levels indicated in this report (ie: 150 MAP ) given the inability at JFK for transporting such numbers to and from this facility and this report offers no solution to this problem
  • 14.
    • Stewart airport-acquired by the Port Authority for $400,000,000- underutilized and no real plans to make more attractive thru:
      • Rail connections
      • Bus shuttles
      • Incentives for carriers to use.
      • -MacArthur also underutilized and its potential not even addressed in this report
      • -
  • 15.
    • Westchester is cited as having a much greater capacity –but is capped at 2.2 MAP as a result of an agreement with Greenwich CT????
    • The report gives takes only a cursory look at Stewart, MacArthur and Westchester and quickly summarizes that they will not make enough of an impact.
  • 16.
    • The filling in and paving over of hundreds of acres of wetlands , mud flats, deep habitat areas will forever destroy these ecological areas
    • Tidal flow impact that may impede the flushing actions that are so critical to the bays health
    • Increase volumes of deicing and other runoff fluids into the bay
    • Increase noise throughout the Park due to new flight patterns.
  • 17.
    • The largest healthiest salt water marsh island in the bay will be either destroyed or heavily impacted.
    • The overall impact will have far reaching secondary impacts that can not be fully gauged including :
      • Tidal flow
      • Increased warming of these waters
      • Increased harmful algae blooms
      • Impact on bird populations throughout the park
      • Loss of huge fish populations and its impact on the food chain
  • 18.
    • “ A portion of the Bay that borders the airport includes a “dead” section called Grassy Bay”
    • , “ some scientists have suggested that reshaping the borrow pits would benefit water quality, fish and wildlife ”
    • “ chief advantage, it is largely in the environmental dead zone of Grassy Bay”
    • “ can potentially improve the environment by filling much of Grassy Bay.”
  • 19.
    • The report recommends filling in and paving over one of the most environmentally productive areas in the entire Northeast and presents it as an environmental benefit.
    • The past proposals to re-contour the borrow pits were rejected by the environmental community as to risky and unproven.
    • NO one from the science community has recommended that filling in and paving over of this area could be conceived as a benefit to the bay.
  • 20.
    • The anecdotal local knowledge is that this is one of the most productive marine environments in the North East.
    • Spring thru early summer the Striped Bass and Blue fish populations number in the tens of thousands.
    • To date local knowledge has been ahead of any of the agencies on critical matters ie: Marsh disappearance, algae blooms etc.
  • 21.  
  • 22.
    • Jamaica Bay and Kennedy Airport: A Multidisciplinary Environmental Study , prepared by the Jamaica Bay Environmental Study Group. This group was appointed by the Environmental Studies Board to evaluate the potential impacts of expansions of Kennedy Airport upon Jamaica Bay and its environs, pursuant to a request from the Port of New York Authority to the Board. 1971
    • Report supplied by the JBRMIN—Jessica Browning,John Scialdone, Mark Christiano
  • 23.
    • HENRY CAULFIELD, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, Colorado
    • STEPHEN ENKE, General Electric—TEMPO, Santa Barbara, California
    • DENIS HAYES, Environmental Action, Inc., Washington, D.C.
    • HENRY KENDALL, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • FRANK LEHAN, Consultant, Santa Barbara, California
    • RENE MILLER, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • ROBERT MORISON, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
    • JOHN PARKHURST, County Sanitation District of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles,
    • California
    • DONALD SQUIRES, State University of New York, Stony Brook, New York
    • ERNST WEBER, National Academy of Sciences, Washington, D.C.
    • M. GORDAN WOLMAN, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 24.
    • JAMES A. FAY, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, ,
    • HAROLD W. ADAMS, State University of New York,
    • PAUL N. BORSKY, Columbia University, New York, New York
    • LUCIEN M. BRUSH, JR., The Johns Hopkins University,
    • NATHAN CAPLAN, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
    • ROBERT L. CRAIN, The Johns Hopkins University,
    • ARTHUR DeVANY, Center for Naval Analyses, Arlington, Virginia
    • LEONARD B. DWORSKY, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
    • PHILLIP 0. FOSS, Colorado State University,
    • WALLACE D. HAYES, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey
    • LAWRENCE E. HINKLE, JR., Cornell University Medical Center,
    • M. GORDAN WOLMAN, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 25.
    • MATTHEW HOLDEN, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin
    • JOHN F. KAIN, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • JACK L. KERREBROCK, Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
    • RICHARD V. KNIGHT, Columbia University, New York, New York
    • KARL D. KRYTER, Stanford Research Institute, Menlo Park, California
    • DORN C. MCGRATH, JR., George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
    • HENRY W. MENARD, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, La Jolla, California
    • ANDREW J. MEYERRIECKS, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida
    • RICHARD S. MILLER, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut
    • BARRY A. PASSETT, Systems for Change, Inc., Trenton, New Jersey
    • IRWIN POLLACK, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
    • ALBERT J. ROSENTHAL, Columbia University, New York, New York
    • ROBERT SOCOLOW, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut
    • E. WINSLOW TURNER, Subcommittee on Intergovernmental Relations, U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C.
    • ALAN A. WALTERS, London School of Economics, London, England
    • STEVEN EBBIN, Environmental Studies Board, NAS—NAE, Study Director
  • 26.
    • We have considered the many possible ways in which Jamaica Bay may be used to satisfy the needs of the people of the New York area. With respect to some of these uses, we have concluded that:  
    • The permanent conversion of any estuarine area to airport or other commercial or industrial use diminishes a national environmental asset of great potential value to future generations . Although Jamaica Bay has been greatly altered by man's activities, its ecological viability can be maintained indefinitely into the future by environmental improvements only if no additional major incursions into the Bay occur.
  • 27.  
  • 28. Their Recommendations
    • In the next ten years, the City of New York should develop Jamaica Bay extensively for conservation and recreational uses by its own citizens and for compatible housing. This requires completion of its existing sewage-treatment program , immediate termination of dredging and sanitary-landfill operations, and the extension of mass-transit connections to shoreside areas.
    • Accomplished –costs hundreds of millions of dollars including recent nitrogen agreement $115,000,000
  • 29. Their Recommendations
    • -The State of New York should establish a Jamaica Bay planning commission, composed of representatives of the Bay communities, the Port of New York Authority, and other relevant City, State, and Nassau County agencies, which should be charged with developing a comprehensive long-range plan for compatible development of the Bay and its contiguous land areas.
    • ( This was also accomplished—Jamacia Bay Watershed protection plan-by the city)
  • 30. Their Recommendations
    • When a need for a new airport has been demonstrated but local authorities have failed to site and construct it, select a site compatible with national environmental and urban growth objectives after consultation with local communities, and take necessary steps to ensure its construction. ( Stewart was acquired to fill this need
    • Stewart Airport was acquired by the port authority at the cost of hundreds of millions to accommodate this need
  • 31.
    • Projections overstated
    • Failure to address the land access problems that exist and will be increased with growth
    • Failure to adequately seek to utilize outlying airports
    • Failure to recognize the impact on the environment that this proposal would have
    • Failure to understand the nature of the ecological significance of this area
    • Failure to acknowledge the extensive previous research that had been undertaken and that rejected this concept
  • 32.
    • This report is overly focused on JFK as a solution to all future growth at the expense of other more viable alternatives that simultaneously do not require the destruction of a Bird sanctuary and Estuary of National Significance.
    • The inaccuracies and omissions ,alone, would shed doubt on the wisdom of implementing these recommendations let alone the massive ecological damage it creates.
  • 33.
    • The Federal Gov’t should fully fund the “NEXT GEN “I and II to allow for the full use of the latest in technology that is available now and in the future which will allow for increased flight capacity at each of the regions airports.
    • The Port Authority should take all steps necessary to ensure that Stewart , as well as Mac Arthur, airport is developed as the “fourth” airport for the region -as has been envisioned and discussed in previous reports.
  • 34.
    • The combined effects of:
      • 1) NEXT GEN I (21 FPH) and II (18 FPH)
      • 2) Full potential use of Stewart ,Macarthur, and Westchester airports , with large scale transportation links –FPH potential ????
      • 3) Expansion at Newark, which the report indicates has the land access ability to handle such volume, and would require no fill. (35 additional flights per hour)
      • Will produce the increased flights that will be needed for realistic future growth.
  • 35.
    • The Port Authority should recognize they are the single largest negative impact on this National Park and should seek to offset the effect of their numerous environmentally damaging practices such as:
      • 26 out fall pipes that discharge all tarmac runoff, including toxic deicing fluids ,directly into the bay without any attempt at retention and treatment of such.
      • Oil storage tanks –massive leaks over the years in both the ground and the bay.(millions of gallons of fuel still unrecovered)
      • Jet emissions pollution
      • Noise pollution.
  • 36.  
  • 37.  
  • 38.
    • -It is very disconcerting to the environmental groups that this report promotes such rejected concepts as wide spread destruction of critical protected natural resources at a time when recognition of the importance of preserving the environment has become so widespread and accepted.
    • -Years of work and hundreds of millions of dollars have gone into creating the vision of those who saw in this bay a place so unique that it should be recognized as a National Park.
  • 39.
    • Two positives have come out of this report in our view :
      • 1 ) The previous history of this bay and the battle to save it have come to light in much more detail—
      • 2) The Port Authority’s impact on this bay may finally be spotlighted and a necessary discussion started on proper ways to attempt to offset and correct the many damaging effects of its operations.
  • 40.
    • -The idea of environmental off sets is not new but as it has been brought up in this report it has taken on a new meaning. We reject the concept that we should allow the port authority to destroy this park and then give back in some monetary or offset project way. -We look at the impact they are having and realize that they should be doing such already. To that end we are calling on the environmental groups of the bay and our elected leaders to join with us in calling for a 50 cent per passenger environmental fee at JFK. This would raise 25 million dollars per year to be used for:
      • The creation of treatment facilities to allow the discharge pipes from JFK to discharge only treated water
      • Restoration projects around the bay
      • Recreation upgrades around the bay ie: ball fields, Artist/theatre groups ,camp grounds
      • Park upgrades as deemed appropriate by a commission to be set up.
  • 41.  
  • 42.  
  • 43.  
  • 44.  
  • 45.  
  • 46.  
  • 47.  
  • 48.
    • 1972 H.R. 1121 Section 3(d) “ The authority of the Secretary of Transportation to maintain and operate existing airway facilities and to install necessary new facilities within the recreation area shall be exercised in accordance with plans which are mutually acceptable to the Secretary of Interior and Secretary of Transportation and which are consistent with both the purpose of this Act [HR.1121] and the purpose of existing statutes dealing with the establishment, maintenance and operation of airway facilities: Provided, That nothing in this section shall authorize the expansion of airport runways into Jamaica Bay or air facilities at Floyd Bennett Field.
  • 49.  
  • 50.  
  • 51.
    • ” From the late 1950’s and extending into the early 1970s ,first the port authority, then the RPA and then the MTA each overestimated air passenger growth.-it is charitable at best to call the accuracy of air passenger traffic forecasts for the NY regions major airports spotty .”
    • ----1992 Jeffrey Zuppan Senior Fellow for Transportation at RPA
  • 52.