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.

On Wednesday, January 12th, 2022, NYLCVEF and our partner, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, hosted a webinar with special guests Orsted and Eversource to learn more about their ongoing offshore wind projects, South Fork Wind and Sunrise Wind.

As COVID cases are spiking and the weather is getting colder, many are opting for takeout rather than dining in. Plastic containers and excess packaging can make takeout a less eco-friendly option, but there are many ways to still be environmentally conscious.

Go electric in 2022! Owning an electric vehicle (EV) has many advantages over owning a gasoline-powered car including lower maintenance costs, fewer emissions resulting in less pollution, and lower fuel costs. 

There’s a lot of talk about going green. Fortunately, governments, businesses and individuals around the world are taking action to support this initiative. From using alternative energy sources like wind, hydro or solar panels to switching to low-emission transportation options, if your daily actions are more eco-friendly, you will not only help protect the environment, but also benefit financially, physically and mentally.

The holiday season is notorious for producing a great deal of waste and harmful emissions, further contributing to humans’ negative impact on our environment. This holiday season, consider purchasing eco-friendly gifts. These gifts may not only promote sustainable practices to those receiving the gifts but also reduce unnecessary waste. 

Black Friday and Cyber Monday offer some of the best annual sales. However, they are also the heaviest consumerism days of the year, intensifying an already significant problem of electronic, clothing, and plastic waste. A 2019 survey found that up to 61% percent of Americans received an unwanted gift during the holidays, much of which will end up in landfills. Below are some tips on how to reduce your carbon footprint this season while still enjoying the discounts. 

As more families will be gathering in person again this year to celebrate Thanksgiving, here are some tips on how to visit with your family and enjoy the holiday while being mindful of your carbon footprint.

Halloween is quickly approaching and while preparing for upcoming festivities, don’t forget to consider the impact the holiday can have on the environment.

Fall is often ripe with an abundance of food and filled with activities such as apple picking and pumpkin pie baking. However, with abundance also comes food waste that , with some careful planning, can be eliminated.

Write as an individual. Legislators prefer hearing from “real constituents,” rather than representatives. Write about your personal experience and how the issue affects you.

For many people, making a phone call is a lot harder than composing a letter or sending off a tweet, but when the phone rings in our legislator’s office, they are obligated to answer.

On Tuesday, November 8th, voters on the East End of Long Island had an important environmental decision to make on their ballots: whether or not to extend the Community Preservation Fund (CPF) in the five East End towns.

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…

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