Pefect Earth Project

Lawn chemicals and pesticides are destroying the environment around us.

Edwina von Gal, who lives in Springs - East Hampton has founded an organization, The PerfectEarth Project., designed to raise consciousness about the dangers of synthetic lawn and garden chemicals to humans, animals, and the environment,

She says there are alternative natural, toxin-free techniques that provide beautiful, safe results, and the Perfect Earth Project aims to educate homeowners and professionals about these techniques.

Francesca Rheannon talked with Edwina von Gal.  Here is that conversation.

More from Edwina von Gal is coming next month, July 18 - on Sustainable East End 

Sustainable East End on WPKN 89.5 FM /

Sustainable East End has moved to:

Sustainable East End is a monthly series about issues of land use, water and energy resources, transportation and the food industries on the twin forks of Long Island.  

The program is heard on the 2nd Thursday each month at noon on listener powered WPKN 89.5 FM  and streaming live on

Sustainable East End is produced by Francesca Rheannon and Tony Ernst.

Bees Needs - Mary Woltz

Francesca Rheannon talks with beekeeper Mary Woltz who keeps bees at the Quail Hill Farm in Amagansett, New York and markets the honey they produce with the label ‘Bees Needs”.  

They talk about biodynamic beekeeping, the role of bees in what we eat, reasons for bee colony collapse and what we can do to help the survival of the bees.

Mary Woltz offered these links to information about the topics covered in today's program:


Biodynamic bee keeping is an approach which respects this integrity of the colony. Its aim is to minimise stress factors and allow bees to develop in accordance with their true nature. Bees are allowed to build natural comb, swarming is acknowledged as the only way to rejuvenate and reproduce a colony, the queen is allowed to move freely throughout the hive and sufficient honey is retained in the hive to provide for the winter. A system of bee keeping that respects a colony's natural integrity will not only reduce stress and encourage healthy bees, it will also be commercially viable. ............

John Halsey of Peconic Land Trust - Updated 2015

Are we running out of farmland?

In a land where potatoes once covered the landscape, traditional farming on the east end has given way to luxury housing over the last decades.

The Peconic Land Trust was started in 1983 to ensure the protection of Long Island’s working farms, natural lands, and heritage.

John v. H. Halsey, President and founder of the Trust was brought up on a traditional farm in Southampton Town. 
Francesca Rheannon spoke with Halsey in 2013 about land preservation efforts of the Peconic LandTrust, the demise of traditional farms, how community supported agriculture was developed by the Land Trust and what can be done to keep protected land in farming. 

Here is an update: 

Last summer (2014) the Southampton Town Board preserved its first two farmland parcels with the proviso that the land, 33 acres in Water Mill, must be in the hands of working food farmers.  The land was sold to a local farmer at considerably below market value after purchase by the Town and transfer to the Peconic Land Trust. 

More information about the trust is at

Coastal Erosion

As sea level rises, coastal erosion is a major problem on the East End. 

Water front property owners have been battling with town trustees over their attempt to protect their property by building bulkheads or other hardened structures.

The structures usually result in significant loss of sand in front of the structure and also down stream along the shoreline, exposing neighbors beachfront and public beaches to severe erosion as well. 

The authority of the trustees based on a colonial era English law   has been challenged in the courts after disputes with homeowners.

In May 2012, a state judge ruled that the Southampton Town Trustees do not have the authority to regulate homeowners placement of structures on or under the ocean beach to protect their homes in the event of severe erosion during major storms, at least within village boundaries.

And  a group of homeowners along Southampton towns oceanfront in Water Mill, Bridgehampton and Sagaponack, combined to fund a multi-million dollar beach replenishment project in 2013 after severe loss of beach sand washed out dunesand threatened homes.

Marine biologist Douglas Hardy has been studying the devastating effects of hardened structures on Southold towns coast line on the north fork of Long Island effects like severe erosion and reduced coastal resilience in the era of climate change. 

Hardy wrote a paper The Starvation of Southold Beaches  for the Conservation Advisory Council to The Southold Town Trustees.  

Hardy identifies the problem and considers the legal aspects of fixing it as property owners battle with local government.  He notes in the paper that as sea level rises and storms become more extreme, storm surges will overwhelm and undermine hardened structures and those structures will also magnify storm surge damage to adjacent beaches. He proposes ways to encourage homeowners to plan for sea level rise in a way that better protects coastal resilience.

The paper was submitted in January at a town board meeting, but was not enthusiastically received, according to, a news blog.

Sustainable East End's Francesca Rheannon talked with Doug Hardy last week. 

Renewable Power Options for the East End

Today we look at renewable energy options for Long Island’s electric grid including solar and wind power as well as off shore wind farms under construction for New England.   

Long Island’s electric power is supplied from various sources both on and off island.
The Long Island Power authority says that the biggest part of the cost of power is the cost of fuels, primarily natural gas. And that cost is highly variable – changing with market conditions.

Next month LIPA will choose from among proposals for solar and wind generated power for Long Island.  Advocates say that solar or wind power generation will reduce our carbon footprint and lower the cost of power delivered to Long Island.

Gordian Raacke of Renewable Energy Long Island (RELI) and Clinton Plummer of Deepwater Wind are heard on today's program.  

Additional Information about today's topics:

Tri - State Transportation Campaign - Ryan Lynch

The lack of adequate mass transit on Long Island’s East End has been long - recognized but has not received the attention it deserves.

The Tri-State Transportation Campaign  is a non-profit advocacy organization dedicated to reducing car dependency in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.

Today we talk with Ryan Lynch, Associate Director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign about the state of mass transportation on eastern Long Island and the metro area.

We learn that LIRR's plan for 'Scoot' shuttle trains on the east end from Speonk to Montauk and from Ronkonkoma to Greenport has been cancelled. 

listen here:

This is another in the  monthly series about issues of land use, water and energy resources, transportation and the food industries on the twin forks of Long Island.  It is heard on the 2nd Thursday each month on listener-powered WPKN Radio - 89.5 FM and streaming live at


Radio producer at WPKN 89.5 FM - East End Ink, Sustainable East End, North Fork Works, Tidings from Hazel Kahan,