Thursday, January 28, 2010

EPA Meeting for the Gowanus Canal !!

On the 21st of January, Brooklyn Kids for Change went to an EPA meeting about the Gowanus Canal.   The EPA held this meeting because they are about to start research on the canal and maybe call it a Superfund site.  A superfund site is a place where the EPA is trying to help a toxic site.  Natalie, the community involvement coordinator and Christos Tsiamis, the manager for the Gowanus project, were speaking and holding the meeting.  My friend, my dad and I spoke up in front of the crowd of 50!

Councilmembers Steve Levin and Brad Lander were there.  In this video, Brad Lander welcomed Brooklyn Kids for Change up in front of the crowd.  We went to the EPA meeting because we are concerned about the Gowanus. (Of course!)  While we were there, we learned about CAG, TAG and TASC groups.  A CAG is a community advisory group, a forum for all interests in the community where there's a superfund site.  Who can participate in a CAG?  Members of the local community, local environmental or public interest groups (that's us!) who can attend meetings as needed.  You would have to go to about 15 meetings per year! For more on CAGs go here.   When Natalie from the EPA took questions, we asked how old you have to be to be eligible for a CAG or TAG!  Natalie said she would highly recommend for people to invite us into a CAG or TAG!
A TAG is a Technical Assistance Grant.  You get $50,000 for hiring a scientist who is an expertiste on certain environmental issues.  The scientist checks the EPA's work on the research of your superfund site to make sure the information is right.
A TASC is technical assistance services for the community.  It is EPA sponsored.  The TASC will provide stuff to help educate the members of the community about the superfund site. 
Finally, I think the Gowanus Canal being called a Superfund site would be great, especially for the man at the Guido Funeral Parlor who would like it to become a replica of Venice!