Protectors of Pine Oak Woods · Latest on Crooks Point

 


 

Latest on Crooke’s Point

PROTECTORS HAS SENT THE FOLLOWING LETTER to the National Park Service and the City Parks Department asking them to extend the evaluation period to three years,

 

Protectors of Pine Oak Woods asks that the National Park Service’s (NPS) pilot project at Crooke’s Point in Great Kills Park, Gateway National Recreation Area, scheduled to be planted in October 2013, be evaluated no sooner than three years after it is planted. This will allow a proper interval so that the success or failure of the planting can be determined with some degree of confidence prior to any further work at Crooke’s Point.

Due to the proposed 20-acre magnitude of this plan, an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) should have been prepared, but the NPS has decided that this project was a “categorical exclusion” and therefore an EIS was not necessary. We understand that in cases such as this the National Environmental Policy Act requires that the agency involved issue a ‘‘finding of no significant impact.” We have no evidence of such a finding.

We have outlined the harmful impact of bulldozing and noted that the use of herbicides on the sandy soils of Crooke’s Point may result in herbicide migration into the ground water system and potentially into the marine environment and fisheries of Great Kills Harbor. We maintain that most of the newly planted trees and shrubs will not survive in the infertile well drained sand unless watered regularly over the years. The outcome at Crooke’s Point may ultimately become an impoverished ecosystem eroded due to loss of vegetation and inevitably reclaimed by invasive species previously removed.

We ask that no further clearing be attempted at Crooke’s Point until after a three-year evaluation of the scheduled plantings has taken place and the likelihood of the project’s success determined.

 

—Clifford A. Hagen, President


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