New York’s Forgotten Toxic Waterway: The Flushing River

Like the Gowanus Canal, the Flushing River is toxic, troubled and adjacent to residential neighborhoods. Garbage lines the banks, and sections of the river give off a foul odor. Now, a plan for the park next to the river and new developments in Flushing are building some momentum. Will this forgotten Queens waterway finally get its turn?

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Scooping Up The Subway’s Garbage

The NYC subway system collects more than 14,000 tons of trash per year—that’s equivalent to the weight of 3,071 adult elephants. But where does it all go?

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Fresh Kills: From Eyesore To Parkland

Fresh Kills, was once the world’s largest landfill, taking in 29,000 tons of garbage per day. Now the site is slowly being transformed into the city’s second largest park. Upon completion, Freshkills Park will span more than 2,000 acres—three times the size of Central Park.

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New York City: The Nation’s Ground Zero For Invasive Species

New York City is not only one of the most diverse cities in the U.S., it’s also one of the primary entry points onto the continent for some of the nation’s most notorious “invasive species.”

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A Venice For The Next Century: NYC And Climate Change

They say no man is an island, but it’s easy to forget that Manhattan is. Rising water levels could drastically change life in New York City, along with other climate changes such as higher temperatures, more precipitation and a greater chance of extreme weather events.

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About This Project

New York City’s ecology is under siege. This city of 8 million people produces 50 million pounds of trash every day and is home to two federally designated Superfund sites – the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn and Newton Creek in Brooklyn and Queens and experts warn that with global climate much of lower Manhattan could end up underwater by the end of the next decade.

How does this environmental battle play out in the city every day? Students at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism take a closer look by examining narrow slices of how the city’s government, environmental advocates and its citizens cope with the city’s ever changing ecology, from how the MTA tries to control subway litter to how the city plans to turn the Fresh Kills garbage landfill into parkland and from the changing nature of its wildlife to a portrait of the city’s forgotten polluted waterway, the Flushing River.