In this week's Newsletter: Flooding in Nebraska is severe enough to be visible from space, check out a local garden center (yes, they still exist), the possibility of a plastic-free lifestyle, a correction on the upcoming changes to L train service and much more!
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Nebraska Floods Are Visible from Space


Spring flooding is a nearly annual occurrence in the upper Midwest, when warming temperatures and March rains start to melt the winter snow pack. But this year, hurricane-strength winds and early warming due to climate change caused the Missouri river to rise four feet in places, turning half of Nebraska's 93 counties into disaster zones.

The most spectacular flooding resulted from the failure of the 90-year-old Spencer Dam on the Niobrara River in north-central Nebraska when it unleashed an 11-foot wall of water on Thursday. Before the flood gauge on the river failed, “it looked like something incredible was happening that we couldn’t believe,” Jason Lambrecht, a Nebraska-based hydrologist with the U.S. Geological Survey told the Lincoln Journal-Star. “And suddenly, everything went dark.”

Eastern Nebraska is just the worst-hit region: Major flooding is currently underway in parts of seven states in the upper Midwest, with near-record flooding expected to spread northward into Minnesota and North Dakota in the coming weeks. In Minnesota, officials expect a greater than 95 percent chance of major flooding, possibly rivaling all-time records.

You can read more at Grist.org here.


Correction: In the March 11 newsletter, we wrote that there would be no overnight L train service for 15 months starting on April 27, 2019. In fact, there will be reduced service overnight and on weekends during that time.

You can see the MTA plan, including expanded M14 bus service, on their website here.

It's Spring, Time to Check Out Your Local Garden Center

When the days start getting longer and warmer, lots of people's thoughts turn to gardening. If you're lucky enough to have private outdoor space in NYC, you're probably planning what to put in the ground right now.

In springtime plants are everywhere- you can buy them from big box stores. of course, but it's even better to buy them from a local garden center or best of all, from a local native plant nursery.

Here's a list of the best local garden centers, as compiled by our local CBS2 team. If you'd like to plant natives, visit Brooklyn's Gowanus Nursery, which should be starting up their spring operations right about now.

If you don't have access to a garden, you can come garden in Stuyvesant Cove throughout the summer and fall, on one (or more) of our upcoming Community Volunteer Days. Please contact Park Manager Emily Curtis-Murphy for details.

Can We Kick Our Addiction to Disposable Plastic?

During January, the Solar One office mounted a zero waste challenge, where the staff divided into 2 teams and competed to see who could generate the smallest amount of trash and recycling during a month. It was a very interesting exercise in mindfulness, and it was a fine competition where Team Angelica prevailed and we used a lot less disposable plastic.

But old habits are hard to break, and since the challenge, we've all backslid a little bit. There's so much plastic everywhere! But it is possible to reduce our reliance on the plastics that we use for only a moment and then will sit in a landfill basically forever.

If you'd like to try getting as close to a zero-plastic lifestyle as possible, check out this article on NYTimes.com about people who are living plastic-free and the choices and trade-offs they make. It's pretty inspiring!

And if you'd like to give up plastic wrap, here's a tutorial for making beeswax food wraps at home. It's easy, fun, and the food wraps smell like honey when they're done. And when you're done with them, you can compost them and make some more!
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Upcoming Events at Solar One

Dates are being finalized for the first Park activities of Spring 2019. Stay tuned!

Featured Event

3/26
Women for Social & Environmental Justice Discussion Panel
Bronx High School of Science, 75 West 205th Street bet Goulden & Jerome Aves, Bronx, 4-6pm, free
Panelists will include Solar One educator Amy Colorado, former NYS Assembly member Aridia Espinal, Climate Museum director Miranda Massie, mWater CEO Dr.Feighery and more to be announced.

Upcoming Events

3/23
E-Waste Recycling with the Lower East Side Ecology Center: Throgs Neck
Randall Avenue bet Throgs Neck Expwy & Hollywood Ave, Bronx, 10am-4pm, free

Flushing Eco-Fest
Flushing Quaker Meeting House, 137-16 Northern Boulevard bet Main & Union Sts, Queens, 11am-3pm, free

3/26
Conquering the Energy Code for Architects & Engineers: Commercial
The Center for Architecture, 536 LaGuardia Place bet Bleecker & W. 3rd Sts, Manhattan, 9am-5pm, $99 general admission

Improving Air Quality: The Fundamentals of Proper Ventilation Design
Club 101, 101 Park Avenue bet E. 40th & E. 41st Sts, Manhattan, 5:30-7:30pm, $50 general admission/$45 Urban Green members

Green Seeds Networking Event #4
Building Energy Exchange, 31 Chambers Street, Suite 609, bet Elk & Centre Sts, Manhattan, 6-8:30pm, free 

3/27
NYC: The Changing Waterfront
CC Filson, 40 Great Jones Street bet Bowery & Lafayette Sts, Manhattan, 7-9pm, free

Save Our Seaport Public Meeting
Southbridge Towers Community Room, 66 Frankfort Street, near Squire's Diner within the Southbridge Towers complex, Manhattan, 7-9pm, free

Carbon Neutral by 2020: A Kilroy Real Estate Presentation
Building Energy Exchange, 31 Chambers Street, Suite 609, bet Elk & Centre Sts, Manhattan, 6-7:30pm, $15 general admission/$10 BE-Ex members and students

3/28
Conquering the Energy Code for Architects & Engineers: Residential
Urban Green Council, 55 Broad Street, 9th Floor Blue Room, bet Beaver St & Exchange Pl, Manhattan, 9am-5pm, $99 general admission

3/29
Weather Forecasting Seminar
The National Lighthouse Museum, 200 The Promenade at Lighthouse Point, Staten Island, 6-8pm, $25 general admission/$15 museum members
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