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April  18

Gray Russell, Energized

Chevening_r3_c1Gray Russell, Montclair’s Earth Day Ambassador Environmental Coordinator is just back from a three month Energy Efficiency fellowship in the U.K., and is he ever energized. Tonight, Gray  shares his smarts at a Renewable Energy Forum sponsored by Essex County Greens, who have this to say:

Clean, renewable energy is the energy source of the future. The burning of fossil fuels is dangerously heating the earth. Oil and natural gas are getting more expensive to produce and are getting harder to extract. And wind, solar power and ethanol are catching on more and more. As gas prices rise, wind and solar are economically competitive, a way to save money while saving our environment.

Gray joins featured speakers Michel Cuillerier, N.J. Sierra Club Conservation Committee, and Suzanne Leta, NJPIRG Energy Associate to discuss why renewable energy is needed, the new technologies, and what makes sense for you. Special guest entertainer is Catherine Moon, a musician/songwriter.  Tonight, 7-9 p.m, Bloomfield Civic Center, 84 Broad St. Free. For future Essex County Greens events, 973-338-5393, or indpol@igc.org. 

April 18, 2006 in Civic Virtue | Permalink


Looks like it's gonna be a good forum and it's FREE!

Posted by: badd_patti | Apr 18, 2006 1:31:06 PM

Where's the Bloomfield Civic Center? It's here: Google Map

Posted by: htb | Apr 18, 2006 2:12:38 PM

Does anyone know what he does for the town?

I imagine he oversees the environmental commission.

What does the commission do?

Montclair doesn't exactly seem like a green town.

Posted by: OX | Apr 18, 2006 2:30:05 PM


Is there an Environemental Commission?

I do know that Gray runs at least 2 Computer and Electronics recycling days a year and worked on Montclair's Master Plan.

here's a minute of two of research



Gray Russell along with Bike Montclair and the Environmental Commission will be presenting the results of an extensive study done on this subject that was funded by the Department of Transportation. Their recommendations will be part of our strategic plan and part of the Master Plan Reexamination.

current board of trustee members
Gray Russell - Montclair

Posted by: badd_patti | Apr 18, 2006 2:49:55 PM


Is Gray Russell a full-time town employee?

Posted by: OX | Apr 18, 2006 4:46:56 PM

as far as I know.

Here's his BIO from the NY Botanical Garden site where he teaches a course called Composting and Environmental Yard Care


Gray Russell Environmental Outreach Coordinator for the Township of Montclair, N.J., provides information to residents on home composting, recycling, environmental yard care, and sustainable cities and towns.

You could always call and ask him directly.

Posted by: badd_patti | Apr 18, 2006 5:13:44 PM

Does anyone have any links to recommend for "green" additions/home renovation?

Posted by: Jessica | Apr 18, 2006 5:46:58 PM

test.......please work

Posted by: wayne robbins | Apr 18, 2006 7:33:52 PM

Gray...welcome home..can't wait to hear how your trip was, and all the new ideas and concepts you could now offer to Montclair.

Tip of my Hat to you.

Posted by: wayne robbins | Apr 18, 2006 7:35:25 PM

There is an environmental commission, chaired by James Farmer.

The Town Council has asked that a sub-commission of the environmental commission be formed to work with a planned hire of a consultant, a Certified Tree Expert who will be writing a five year management program for Montclair for the "Urban Forest."

The expenditure is in the low four figures, the work usually costing ten times what this extremely competent individual is getting paid.

The Environmental Commission does excellent work and the Commission members have outstanding credentials. I am not an Environmental Commission member, but am contributing tree "knowledge" and working with the tree consultant.

Gray is cool. Seems to be involved in "everything environmental." Great person to know, very knowledgeable.

Posted by: carya | Apr 18, 2006 8:26:11 PM

It's nice to hear someone is working on the tree issue.

I see so many stumps around town. It sometimes worries me.

Posted by: OX | Apr 19, 2006 4:43:00 PM

it doesn't worry ROC.

Posted by: pissant | Apr 19, 2006 10:30:48 PM

It doesn't worry me in the slightest. Because everywhere I look in New Jersey where land is left alone it simply fills up with trees - to the "brim"! The Good Lord sees to it without any help from Cary, or Patti, or any commissions or sub committees or certified arborists or consultants, or "urban foresters" or any manner of vast bureaucracy of "blue meanies" whatsoever.

While cultivating trees is a nice thing, I have no doubt nature will take its inevitable course if left sufficiently alone -- no matter how calloused one's hands might get from all the wringing.

Posted by: Right of Center™ | Apr 20, 2006 12:12:56 AM

I served on a committe with Gray regarding the expansion of the Harrison Avenue fire station and I found hiim thoughtful and intelligent. However while I think it is commendable for the town to adopt more environmentally friendly policies I must disagree with his comment here on Baristanet. Global warming is a theory and just that. And it is not backed by any credible science. In fact the earth is probably getting cooler and in about 10,000 years we'll be in another ice age. Does that mean we should be irresponsible and careless? Of course not. Environmental changes happen, it is nature. How much man has affected them is simply a debatable. Signing off at 11 30 am Thursday in the UAE where the temps will hit the upper 90s today.

Posted by: jmo | Apr 20, 2006 3:24:55 AM

i don't see a quote from Gray here. where do you see one?

i do see a quote from the Essex County Greens.


i think you're seeing weeds. what have you been smoking?

Posted by: pissant | Apr 20, 2006 3:34:43 AM

I stand corrected, it was a quote from NJ Greens. I snip it here, "Clean, renewable energy is the energy source of the future. The burning of fossil fuels is dangerously heating the earth." Though since Gray is on their panel I suspect he shares the same distorted view.

Posted by: jmo | Apr 20, 2006 3:41:57 AM

"I suspect he shares the same distorted view."

if you don't want people to assume they know your opinion don't assume that you know theirs.

Posted by: pissant | Apr 20, 2006 3:48:28 AM

Faiur enough, but if you participating in an event sponsored by NJPIRG and ECG it is a fair assumption that you are in agreement wtih their philosophy. Common sense. Not a huge reach.And finally Pissant I suspect you have already made assumptions about my point of view. If not, I suspect you are being disingenious.

Posted by: jmo | Apr 20, 2006 7:19:28 AM


I was not born with all the answers packed into my head. The more I learn the more I realize how much more I have to learn.

With regard to the tree "issue," I wish you would open up your mind to consider the possibilities of the things I am speaking of.

Please look at:


Tell me what you think. It's what I think a "model" plan for trees.

No need to worry, though. What Montclair is considering is much, much, much less ambitious. No ordinances are even being thought about for Montclair, for example.

Posted by: carya | Apr 20, 2006 7:34:40 AM


i don't know you.

should i?

i think i've seen one or two of your posts here but don't remember what they said.

why would i make assumptions?

state your opinion then we'll all know where you stand on the environment.

are you trying to say that you're ordinary or unsophisticated?

Main Entry: common sense
1 : the unreflective opinions of ordinary people
2 : sound and prudent but often unsophisticated judgment

Posted by: pissant | Apr 20, 2006 7:42:28 AM

Pissant, Thanks for the definition. I needed that. My point is rather simple. Being pro-environment does not mean we have to throw the scientific method out the window. It (the ennvornment, global warming, etc) has been politicized beyond the point of reasonableness. Science is not on the side of the folks who predict doom and gloom, in fact sea levels are not rising, temps if you look at the data show a cooling trend, although built up urban areas are hotter today than they were 20 years ago. These heat islands do not effect global climate change. My final point is that in the original post theory is often quoted as fact - as apriori. Global warming may be in vogue right now but until science can prove such a thing exists and that man - is reponsible I will be on the fence.

Posted by: jmo | Apr 20, 2006 7:52:26 AM

Cary, no offense. I like trees. I would even support a low cost "adviser" for the town on what kinds of trees to plant and where or which trees are dangerous and ought to be removed.

It's a good idea to get an opinion on removal from someone who doesn't have a vested interest in the removal (i.e. the tree service).

However, "urban foresters" will lead inexorably towards "urban forest protection laws" which in the end (as nearly all liberal initiatives eventually do) will result in a loss of my own property rights.

I have no doubt many people in our town would like nothing better than to "eminent domain" the ecology of my yard.

All these committees and sub commissions are but the first stepping stone.

Posted by: Right of Center™ | Apr 20, 2006 8:18:09 AM

I took a look at the report.
Impressive. I'd say the primary effect of this "urban forest" plan was the furthering of "urban forest bureaucracy" rather than trees.

But, as I suspected:

"Regulation of Heritage Trees, Memorial Trees, Specimen Trees, and Street Trees on Public or Private Property
Article 3 of the ordinance provides a mechanism for the designation of Heritage Trees, Memorial Trees, Specimen Trees and Street Trees. Trees can be nominated on public or private property. The individual trees, after having met the criteria for their nomination category, are designated by ordinance by the County Board. Once designated the tree is legally protected from injury or removal. This protection carries with the deed of the property. Violation of these protections is considered a civil penalty punishable by fine."

(emphasis added)


So when you say "It's what I think a model plan for trees." I say, "I am sure you do."

When you say "No ordinances are even being thought about for Montclair" I say "yet!" and then refer back to your first statement.

Posted by: Right of Center™ | Apr 20, 2006 8:37:55 AM

Anyone in Montclair who values their own property rights should "beware subcommittees" bearing "urban forestry" reports!

Posted by: Right of Center™ | Apr 20, 2006 8:39:47 AM

Anyone in Montclair who values their own property rights should "beware subcommittees" bearing "urban forestry" reports!

Posted by: Right of Center™ | Apr 20, 2006 8:39:54 AM

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