For the first time in years, a strong consensus on priorities emerged among the participants at state Sen. Kenneth Lavalle’s annual environmental forum.
The roundtable of dozens of government officials and citizens groups which met Thursday night on the Suffolk County Community College campus in Selden.
“This is different than the other forums,” said LaValle (R-Port Jefferson). “They’re all talking about water issues.”
The Citizens Campaign for the Environment talked about the need to ban three harmful pesticides found in Long Island’s drinking water, while others discussed the necessity of protecting and preserving drinking water and the still-undeveloped land above Long Island’s only supply of it, the underground sole-source aquifer.
The Long Island Farm Bureau stressed the role of farmers as the true stewards of open space and land preservation.
And, there was some discussion on other environmental issues, such as light pollution and the need for renewable energy.
With Suffolk County debating how much money it can continue to spend on acquiring farmland development rights, participants generally agreed that as budget problems continue to be the biggest difficulty facing all levels of government, it will be necessary to set priorities among the various issues discussed.
Pictured above: State Sen. Kenneth Lavalle (R-Port Jefferson)