Friday, January 11, 2013

Day 404, plus Environmental Destruction on the Cambridge Common

1. Day 404 at the Destroyed Nesting Area of the Charles River White Geese.
2. Cambridge Chronicle notices Cambridge Common.

1. Day 404 at the Destroyed Nesting Area of the Charles River White Geese.

On January 10, I conducted day 404 of our visibilities at the Destroyed Nesting Area of the Charles River White Geese. I had good response including one gentleman who has been a regular.

The area turned into an irresponsible parking lot includes a very significant portion which is now a quagmire. We have had a freeze followed by a thaw.

The gaggle of the Charles River White Geese rested on the ground on the safe side of their favorite spot, now parking. When the workers left, the gaggle moved to the artificial emptiness next to the BU Bridge where they rested. Was the original spot a plea to decency from people with no ethics?

2. Cambridge Chronicle notices Cambridge Common.

The January 10, 2013 edition of the Cambridge Chronicle modestly front paged a report on the proposed destruction on the Cambridge Common.

I have submitted the following letter. I enclosed copies of the Environmental Notification Form and of the Kelley motion mentioned in the letter. Two typos corrected.


RE: Cambridge Common Environmental Destruction: Cambridge words and reality.

You have reported on Cambridge’s latest foray into environmental destruction.

This time, it is on Cambridge Common and Flagstaff Park.

The report quotes a city representative as saying that 20 trees will be destroyed, “some of the [20] trees are diseased.”

Interestingly, as is very common with Cambridge environmental destruction, a different reality occurs when you look at the official documents.

The Environmental Impact Statement in the second paragraph on the fourth page says:

“To create this path and visual connection twenty-two trees will be removed.” The short version of “visual connection” is that the planners are disturbed that trees are blocking the view. NO MENTION OF DISEASED TREES AMONG THE 22 appears in the ENF. Contrary to this normal mentality among city planners, responsible people consider trees to be the view. Such a position by Cambridge “planners” is nothing less than outrageous, but is highly normal among these people.

The city council passed a motion on this matter submitted by Councilor Kelley on November 5, which stated: “The Cambridge Common renovation project plans to remove close to one hundred significantly sized trees.” Perhaps the looksee corrected a misunderstanding by the Cambridge City Council. However, the Cambridge City Manager has routinely kept secret as much environmental destruction as he can get away with.

The highway proposal through Flagstaff Park goes through an area with very significant trees. That highway project is mentioned in the ENF. This mention of the highway with no more could be the City Manager’s usual mention of destruction without mentioning the destruction. The City Manager thinks it is the duty of responsible people to cross examine the City Manager and to find what he has kept secret.

If Councilor Kelley was correct, those magnificent trees could explain the difference between the 22 HEALTHY TREES which are being destroyed for blocking the view and the 100 he mentioned.

In any case, contrary to the diseased nonsense and at absolute minimum, 22 healthy trees are being destroyed because they block the view.

This bizarre level of priorities fits Cambridge’s destruction of acres of Alewife and killing hundreds of animals for a “flood protection” project which will not protect against floods but which meaningfully could be done on nearby properties without any environmental destruction.

This bizarre level of priorities fits multiple outrages on the Charles River which are in the process of being made much worse.

Business as usual in the City of Cambridge.