Other Projects

One Other Project 

I have a deep concern for environmental issues, especially in the present climate of Climate Change Deniers.  I have done some photography projects that deal with social-political issues, but I have done so with some reservations.   I do not encourage the use of one's creative energies on social-political issues.  There are better ways, I believe, to affect social change, and film documentaries are by far a more superior way to at least try to do that. 

Nonetheless what I have done, and when I did it, it seemed necessary--at least for me.  The ecological crisis we are facing today is so series it is more than deeply concerning, it is frightening.  Planet Earth has been neglected and abused for too long.  It is about to leave us.  We live in a Departing Landscape.

Saving The Natural World 
In the summer of 2011 my wife Gloria and I became aware that the Finger Lakes area of New York State, where we now live, was on the brink of becoming an industrial wasteland.  Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the State's Department of Environmental Conservation seemed determined at that time to force New York State to fold under growing pressures from the the natural gas and oil industry to initiate in our state a new drilling technique known as horizontal high volume hydraulic fracturing. This technology, known as "fracking," has the potential for poisoning huge volumes of our state's valuable fresh water with toxic industrial chemicals and contaminated waste which could ruin our states's organic faming, the Finger Lakes tourism, and our unique regional wine industries.

Hydrofracking is a violent and toxic process that contributes significantly to the every growing threats of climate change, the extreme weather events associated with it, and in general the health and well being of the residents, farm land, animals, and the wild life in many states in this country which are using the process. Hydrofracking produces huge quantities of methane gas, now understood to a be a very potent contributor to Climate Change, and dangerous in so many other ways as well.

On the morning of October 14, 2011, after seeing a rainbow hovering over the beautiful meadow behind our property, I decided to begin creating a website which would contain essays, environmental websites, senate testimonies, newspaper articles, science reports . . . any important real, factual scientific information that would help myself and others to understand the dangers of hydrofracking to our environment, our health, and which would negatively impact the value of our personal property. Here is a revised, edited and essentially, now, neglected version of what was at one time a very aggressive and rapidly changing and expanding website:  NoToHydrofracking.blogspot.com/  

As an artist I had in the past consciously avoided making art that addressed social issues. But my wife Gloria and I felt it our duty to speak out against the greed and power of an industry, and the governments buying into their propaganda and their bribes, that was threatening our very life, the lives of our children and grandchildren, and our personal property in the Finger Lakes region of New York state. We participated in many rallies and hearings, I created the "hydrofracking website," then I became inspired to create an unlikely and surprising series of related art projects which together formed. . . 

The Hydrofraking Suite  

After a tremendous effort on the part of so many New York State citizens, environmental groups, lawyers and scientists, I am happy to say that on December 17, 2014, Hydrofracking was finally banned in New York State, Click Here to learn more . 

However . . . the residents of this amazing state continue to be under threat in many ways. For example, in October, 2013 we learned that the New York DEC was trying to fast track new regulations for gas infrastructure, and in particular a very volatile product known as Liquified Natural Gas or LNG. These LNG facilities would then be the precursor to justify opening New York State to hydrofracking.  And there is an ongoing battle over the storage of dangerous natural gas products on the shores of Seneca Lake, largest of the Finger Lakes, which provides drinking water in over 100,00 people. If a leak were to occur in the storage area, the lake could be destroyed forever. A growing number of gas and oil lines are being proposed to move toxic gas and oil products through the state in pipes that can easily rupture and ruin valuable water, poison animals and people, pollute the air, and on and on . . .

Hydrofracking and the use of fossil fuels like natural gas, oil and coal is literally a matter of life and death for all of us and the entire planet. (I highly recommend Sandra Steingraber's work, also visit EcoWatch.com) Sustainable energy options such a solar and wind are viable alternatives to the toxic fossil fuels we produce and use in this country. It is a matter of education and political will to change the direction we are going in. But with the new administration that is entering the White House in January, 2017, the battles will be harder and continuous in the years to come to try to get the political will to shift in a way that will make our country great rather that ravished.

Please participate in the protection and the well being of our planet Earth--and the state in which you you live--in any way that you can. The transition to sustainable energy alternatives is a must if our grandchildren are to have any kind of descent life in the future. It is up to all of us to get our politicians to do the right thing. They may not do it without our threats to their political agendas and careers. This Planet needs our support, our protection. Greed and ignorance is forcing the Earth to become sick. Its dying. We are now living in a Departing Landscape.

The Departing Landscape Project  

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