Citizen's Toolkit

Our mission is to educate New Yorkers and help them become engaged and empowered advocates for the environment. The resources listed here can help you learn about environmental issues across the state and take advantage of the ways you can protect environment in your personal life and by getting involved in policy and political processes at the local and state levels. From contacting your representatives to the appropriate avenues to report environmental hazards to how to register to vote, these pages can help you protect the interests that are most important to you. As part of the Citizen’s Toolkit, we also provide weekly “Green Tips” so that you can make sustainable lifestyle choices. In the fight against climate change, every little effort can help to reduce carbon emissions and protect our planet from the worst.

With travel, gift giving, and many big meals, the winter holidays are one of the times of the year with the highest rates of personal consumption. Because of this heightened consumption rate, the holidays  are the time when being conscious of sustainable practices will have the greatest total impact. Here are some holiday practices you can take to generate an impact, and others that can help foster a sense of love and consciousness toward the environment.

The 2017 general election will take place on Tuesday, November 7th. The importance of voting goes beyond an obligation to do our civic duty: elections have real consequences. The representatives we choose make decisions on our behalf that have a tangible effect on issues like the environment and our everyday lives. NYLCVEF has compiled a…

Temperatures are finally starting to drop, and we’re welcoming the crisp autumn air. One of the best ways to fully appreciate and experience the beauty of it is to spend time in one of New York State’s parks. Boasting some of the most beautiful nature in America, New York is home to over 200 state…

Voting is the most powerful way to ensure your leaders represent your values.

The New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund is pleased to present this 2017 Green Guide as a resource for all candidates running for public office in New York City. This document, released at our Environmental Candidate School, is a one-stop-shop for candidates to learn about new opportunities and approaches to persistent sustainability problems….

Eating locally is easy in the summer, when farm stands seem to be overflowing with fresh fruits, veggies, and leafy greens, so now is the best time to build a seasonal eating habit. Here are some more tips to help you green your diet:

The summer heat means more sweat, and by extension more loads of laundry to do. However there a variety of practices other than re-wearing your sweaty gym clothes that can make your laundry practices more sustainable. Wash with Cold Water Studies show that 75% of the total energy-use and carbon emissions associated with your laundry…

Water issues might not be making as many headlines anymore, but even if your local supply hasn’t made it to the news, you might remain at risk without knowing it. Given the number of contaminants that can make their way into shared or even private wells, you’ll need to make sure your drinking water stays…

Each year, NYLCV and the NYLCV Education Fund work closely with New York’s leading environmental, public health, conservation, energy, environmental justice, and transportation organizations to identify the state’s most pressing priorities on fighting climate change, conserving land and water, and protecting public health. The result of that effort is our 2017 New York State legislative…

An environmental violation can be broadly defined as an illegal act that harms the environment or endangers public health. Just like other illegal acts, environmental offenses violate federal, state or local law. New York State has many laws within the Environmental Conservation Law (ECL) designed to protect the communities, environment and health of its residents….

Every year, NYLCVEF and our sister organization, NYLCV, work with New York’s leading environmental, public health, conservation, energy, environmental justice, and transportation organizations to identify the state’s most pressing priorities on climate change, public health and natural resources. The result of that effort is the document that you have here. Our 2016 agenda charges the…

You can find out a lot about your state government and how to get involved in the electoral and legislative processes online. We have provided some links below to get you started. Open.NY.gov was launched in March 2013 to provide “user-friendly, one-stop access to data from New York State agencies, localities, and the federal government.”…

Identifying a Policy This is the starting point in the process, and the first point at which the citizen has a chance to have a say in the writing or rewriting of law. Ideas for legislation come from many sources: a legislator may have an idea; one of his or her constituents may point out…

On Tuesday, June 2nd Suffolk County passed the Toxic-Free Toys Act unanimously. The bill will prohibit the sale of children’s toys that contain unsafe levels of six hazardous chemicals: antimony, arsenic, cadmium, cobalt, lead, and mercury. This is a huge victory for children and parents in Suffolk County. Legislator Kara Hahn introduced the bill after…

After the release of our report in Westchester County documenting the presence of dangerous chemicals and heavy metals in children’s toys and products, County Legislative Majority Leader Catherine Borgia announced she would be introducing a law to ban seven of the most toxic chemicals from children’s products, and the County Board of Legislators quickly got…

Assemblymember Steve Englebright discusses the Child Safe Products Act at press conference. Last year the Child Safe Products Act died in the Senate despite bipartisan support. It had 40 cosponsors but was not brought to a vote. We were disappointed, but we immediately got back to work with our coalition partners to get a similar…

Health and environmental advocates today unveiled a report, “Toxic Toys on Long Island,” detailing the presence of toxic chemicals like mercury and cadmium in children’s toys and products. The dangerous chemicals have been linked to cancer, cognitive impairments, hyperactivity and genetic disorders in children. All of the toys and products tested were purchased in Long…

PlaNYC2030 set out an ambitious goal to divert 75 percent of our solid waste from landfills. As food currently makes up about 35 percent of all waste generated in New York City, composting represents an attractive opportunity to save taxpayer dollars and reduce transportation impacts. Various composting pilot projects are underway in residential and school…

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