Above: A trailcam captures a nighttime view of a wild boar in Delaware County. Photo taken in August of 2013; courtesy of Justin Gansowski of the USDA.
This week, federal wildlife agents armed with cameras and sniper rifles are patrolling New York State skies by helicopter, hoping for a glimpse of wild pigs. It's the latest mission in an ongoing battle to rid the state of feral swine, before most New Yorkers even realize the state has a pig problem.
New York City's newly-inaugurated mayor, Bill de Blasio, made it clear he's opposed to hydraulic fracturing in New York State in a speech to fellow mayors in Washington D.C. on Thursday.
De Blasio told the U.S. Conference of Mayors that "the one thing I am firm about is that I don't see any place for fracking," Capital New York reports. The mayor spoke in favor of a statewide moratorium:
“The science simply isn’t reliable enough," de Blasio said on Thursday. "The technology isn’t reliable enough. And there’s too much danger to our water supply, to our environment in general. So my view is that there should be a moratorium on fracking in New York State until the day comes that we can actually prove it’s safe, and I don’t think that day is coming any time soon.” Read more
The system will provide real-time warnings of local extreme weather and flood conditions, and identify threats to communities, roads, bridges and the electric system. Data will be available for use in predictive modeling and early warnings to prevent loss of life and property. The number of weather stations will be increased from the current 27 to over 100, creating a highly sophisticated real-time weather reporting network that will accelerate and improve information sharing, thereby assisting emergency responders in responding to extreme weather events.
The New York City Department of Environmental Protection, which oversees the city's upstate reservoirs, has also been investing heavily in weather technology lately. The DEP needs accurate weather data -- especially streamflow data -- to manage more than a billion gallons a day flowing through the city's water system.
Above: New York State Agricultural Society President Diane Held congratulates Schoharie County farmer Richard Ball, recently appointed as New York State's new Commissioner of Agriculture, at the group's 2014 forum on New York agriculture. Photo from the New York State Agricultural Society's Facebook page.
The Northeast is thawing out this weekend, after several days of intense subzero cold. In the Catskills and across a wide area of upstate New York, a combination of rain in the forecast and melting snow and ice from rapidly-warming temperatures has the region under floodwatch from Saturday afternoon to Sunday evening. Read more
Local forecasters at the National Weather Service in Binghamton are predicting that temperatures Monday night and Tuesday could be the coldest in a decade or more. In a detailed briefing issued Monday morning, NWS forecasters warned that Tuesday would be the coldest day of the cold snap, with temperatures down to 10 below zero or lower and wind chills of up to 30 to 35 below zero in their forecast area, which extends to the western Catskills.
We're tracking the local impacts of the cold front in real time on Storify. Let us know of any road accidents, power outages or other issues in your neighborhood at [email protected], and we'll post them to the liveblog below. (We'll gladly share your gorgeous ice pictures, too.) The latest updates appear at the top of the liveblog.
On Friday, New York State Police troopers announced the arrests of three Greene County residents on burglary charges in several incidents.
In one incident, which occurred the day before New Year's Eve, someone broke into the Jefferson Heights Pharmacy in the town of Catskill and stole prescription medication. Arrested on Dec. 31 was 30-year-old Christopher Hale, a Catskill resident. Hale was charged with third-degree burglary and remanded to the Greene County Jail without bail. He was due to appear in Catskill town court at 10 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 6.
In a separate pair of arrests, two Tannersville teenagers were arrested after an investigation into the theft of a snowmobile from the village of Tannersville on Dec. 27. Arrested on Dec. 30 were 16-year-old Cameron Parquez and 18-year-old Michael Martin.
During the investigation, police also linked Parquez and Martin to a burglary at the Cortina Mountain Resort in Hunter that occurred earlier in December. Read more