RCRA Closure and Site Management Plan

American Analytical is working with a New York based Environmental Consultant in preparing a RCRA Closure and Site Management Plan for a former EPA regulated site on Long Island.

The environmental consultant is working closely with regulatory authorities to minimize costs for their client, while maintaining public health and safety.  All analytical samples are collected and analyzed with the highest degree of quality and accuracy.  Level IV Data Reports are prepared and submitted within 10 days of sample collection for regulatory review.

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Spring 2014 Newsletter

After a long brutal winter, spring has finally arrived in New York and with it comes the promise of being outdoors – and new work!

We have used our winter time wisely, and have been modifying and updating our LIMS system to accommodate Category B, CLP type packages – not an easy task, by any means.  To offer the best services and capabilities to our clients, we felt the upgrade was necessary to support their environmental projects with data validator-friendly reports, easily created to provide all analytical data reporting requisites, including raw data and CLP reporting forms.

We also wanted to share some environmental news and interesting developments for  the local Long Island Waters in the Great South Bay – Suffolk County, the Nature Conservancy, and local environmental consultants are working on bringing public awareness of the plight of our local waters to the forefront of environmental policy.  Our local waters are a great source of leisure and income during the summer months   – find out what they are doing about it, and check the links to the left to see what you can do to help minimize our environmental impact.

Our Top Ten list this newsletter focuses on Ecology, and there are some points to ponder regarding our energy consumption and growing need for re-usable consumables.  Check the list and let us know what you think!

Spring is…to begin!

Spring 2014 Newsletter

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NASA Celebrates Earth Day with “Global Selfie” Event

Earth Day is April 22 this year…
NASA invites you — and everyone else on the planet — to take part in a worldwide celebration of Earth Day this year with the agency’s #GlobalSelfie event.

Global Selfie
NASA’s “Global Selfie” event is designed to encourage environmental awareness and recognize the agency’s ongoing work to protect our home planet.

For the first time in more than a decade, five NASA Earth-observing missions will be launched into space in a single year. To celebrate this milestone, NASA is inviting people all around the world to step outside on Earth Day, April 22, take a “selfie,” and share it with the world on social media.
Designed to encourage environmental awareness and recognize the agency’s ongoing work to protect our home planet, NASA’s “Global Selfie” event asks people everywhere to take a picture of themselves in their local environment.
On Earth Day, NASA will monitor photos posted to Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Google+ and Flickr. Photos posted to Twitter, Instagram or Google+ using the hashtag #GlobalSelfie, or to the #GlobalSelfie Facebook event page and the #GlobalSelfie Flickr group will be used to create a crowd-sourced mosaic image of Earth – a new “Blue Marble” built bit-by-bit with #GlobalSelfie photos.
NASA’s 17 Earth science missions now in orbit help scientists piece together a detailed “global selfie” of our planet day after day. Insights from these space-based views help answer some of the critical challenges facing our planet today and in the future: climate change, sea level rise, freshwater resources, and extreme weather events. NASA Earth research also yields many down-to-earth benefits, such as improved environmental prediction and natural hazard and climate change preparedness.
For more information on getting involved in the #GlobalSelfie Earth Day event, visit:
http://1.usa.gov/PfjXln
For more information about NASA’s Earth science activities in 2014, visit:
http://www.nasa.gov/earthrightnow
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Steve Cole
Headquarters, Washington
202-358-0918
stephen.e.cole@nasa.gov

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Long Island, NY Top Ten Nature Preserves

Long Island has no shortage of various wildlife ecosystems and habitats. This is perfect for nature lovers, those looking to get away from a hectic schedule and reconnect with nature or anyone looking for cheap or free activities to enjoy with their friends. Explore the many wonders of the wild at any of these Long Island parks and nature preserves. Visitors will find all sorts of trees and plant life, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and more, all indigenous to the Long Island environment. A number of these preserves also have ecological education centers and museums where visitors may gain knowledge of Long Island’s natural habitats and history.

Long Island

1. Avalon Park and Preserve spreads across eight acres and is the recreation of the natural environments of Long Island discovered by the early settlers of New York. Highlights include a large duck pond, a boardwalk, footpaths and a labyrinth.
Avalon Park and Preserve, 200 Harbor Road, Stony Brook – (631) 689-0619

2. Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary and Audubon Center, established in 1923, was the nation’s first bird sanctuary. The sanctuary provides quality educational resources as well as wildlife research and conservation.
Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary and Audubon Center, 134 Cove Road, Oyster Bay – (516) 922-3200

3. The Cranberry Bog County Nature Preserve is a 165 acre preserve, all that remains of an abandoned cranberry-growing operation. Visitors will enjoy miles of hiking trails that allow for views of the Little Peconic River, and various bird, reptile, and plant specials plus plenty of other wildlife.

Cranberry Bog County Nature Preserve, Edwards Avenue South, Riverhead – (631) 854-4949

4. The Caleb Smith State Park Preserve is one of only two New York State nature preserves. This picturesque preserve comprised of over 543 acres containing nature trails, bird watching huts, a lake where fishing is permitted April through October, and a recently renovated Nature Museum with a number of exhibits.
Caleb Smith State Park Preserve, 581 West Jericho Turnpike, Smithtown – (631) 265-1054

5. The Connetquot River State Park is one of Long Island’s biggest, resting upon 3,473 acres of land. It contains over 50 miles of trails for hiking, horseback riding, cross country skiing, and nature walks. Fishing is allowed at Connetquot River with a permit.
Connetquot River State Park, Sunrise Highway, Oakdale – (631) 581-1005

6. Inside the Welwyn Nature Preserve visitors will find four trails leading along various ponds, swamps, salt marches and even a stretch of the Long Island Sound. Visitors will also get the chance to catch a glimpse of more than 100 species of birds, small mammals, reptiles, and other wildlife inhabiting the 204 acre preserve. It is also the home of the Holocaust Memorial & Educational Center.
Welwyn Nature Preserve, 100 Cresent Beach Road, Glen Cove – (516) 676-1474

7. The Tackapausha Museum and Preserve, an 84 acre sanctuary, is one of the more popular preserves on Long Island. Located in Seaford, it is rich with oak forests, ponds, streams, small mammals and many bird species. The five miles of marked trails make for wonderful and scenic hiking.
Tackapausha Museum and Preserve, Washington Avenue (at Merrick Road & Sunrise Highway), Seaford – (516) 571-7443

8. Sands Point Preserve offers visitors a delightful stroll on six marked trails through woodlands, fields, pond, and a stretch of beach on the Long Island Sound. Guided nature walks on the 216 acre preserve are available.
Sands Point Preserve, 127 Middleneck Road, Port Washington – (516) 571-7900

9. The Massapequa Preserve consists of 423 acres of land divided into three sections, intersected by major roadways. The Preserve is home to many rare and endangered Long Island plants and is home to the beginning of the Nassau-Suffolk Greenbelt Trail, the longest hiking trail in Nassau County. A license is required to fish in the various lakes and streams within the preserve.
Massapequa Preserve, Merrick Road and Ocean Avenue, Massapequa – (516) 571-7443

10. Muttontown Preserve contains 550 acres of fields, woodlands, ponds and miles of marked nature trails where visitors will see various local wildlife including birds, mammals and reptiles. Cross country skiing is available in the winter.
Muttontown Preserve, Muttontown Lane, East Norwhich – (516) 571-8500

This is just a small selection of the various parks, preserves and sanctuaries located on Long Island. Explore, and have fun!

Projects: Site Sampling and Analysis

American Analytical worked with a contractor on the Whitestone Expressway project for the NYC Dept of Design and Construction.

The project involved the installation of various utilities/infrastructure including sanitary/storm sewers and appurtenances, a water main, street lighting, and traffic signals along the eastern side of the Whitestone Expressway. Soil excavation required proper characterization management, transportation, and disposal of the excavated material. Project required testing soil and water from the soil borings along the way for a full suite of analytical parameters.

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Projects: Biosolids Analysis

Laboratory Testing to Support Land Application and Composting Programs

American performs laboratory testing to support Biosolids land application programs. Also known as sewage sludge, Biosolids are used to enhance agricultural and silvicultural production. Biosolids are the nutrient–rich organic byproducts resulting from wastewater treatment. Biosolids are not raw human waste, and do not include ash from incinerators, grit and screenings collected during preliminary treatment of wastewater, industrial residues, municipal solid waste, or hazardous waste. Biosolids can take several forms, including a liquid, a rich moist soil, a dried pellet, or compost. Biosolids, when used according to regulations, are safe and can be used as a soil amendment, a fertilizer, as an ingredient in compost, or as an energy source. American has the expertise necessary to assist you in your Biosolids program.

 

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Where does your water come from?

A simple question, but how many people actually know the answer? The Nature Conservancy took to the streets to find out.

 

DID YOU KNOW…

  • 80% of Americans’ drinking water comes from rivers and lakes.
  • New York City is one of only five large cities in the U.S. that does not have to filter its drinking water because the watershed is so well protected.
  • Every day over 1 billion gallons of fresh, clean water is delivered from large reservoirs in upstate New York, including the Neversink, Cannonsville and Pepacton Reservoirs in the Delaware River Basin.
  • Our state’s Watershed Protection Program is one of the most comprehensive in the world and has been so successful at protecting New York City’s water supply that the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awarded the City a 10-year Filtration Avoidance Determination (FAD) in 2007.
  • The Conservancy is protecting these water sources by doing things like removing the Cuddlebackville Dam, which was blocking mussel larva from traveling down the Neversink river, so that the mussels could reproduce. This same dam was also keeping migratory fish in the Neversink River from migrating. Currently, we are working to have natural-flow regulations as statewide policies.

– See more at: http://www.nature.org/ourinitiatives/regions/northamerica/unitedstates/newyork/placesweprotect/newyorkcity/ny1drinkingwater.xml#sthash.gAdOwsBa.dpuf

Weird and Wild: National Geographic Animals

So theatrical, so blazing with color, so much larger than life—are we talking about Lady Gaga or a sea slug?

Despite being one of the most creatively outfitted performers of all time, Lady Gaga has some competition in the animal world. Nature’s show-stoppers include everything from insects with balls on their head to psychedelic frogfish. And unlike people, these animals don’t need outfits to look outrageous.

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Yes, the globe-bearing treehopper is real.

A globe-bearing treehopper seen in French Guyana in 2005. Photograph by Patrick Landmann, Getty Images

 

But don’t take our links for it. Look it up: Bocydium globulare. We don’t blame you for being suspicious: It’s not every day you see an insect that looks exactly like an instrument to measure wind speed.

The globe-bearing treehopper is native to northern South America, feeds on the underside ofglory bushes, and what those mesmerizing balls are for is anybody’s guess. One theory is that its hairy balls may capture air vibrations when any predators approach and thus warn the insect of danger.

“I sometimes imagine,” treehopper expert Geoff Balme wrote on his blog, “that much in our world is possible simply because there are no natural objections to it.”

Thankfully, nature has seen fit to grow these incredible insects to be only about a third of an inch long (7.5 millimeters). Imagine if they were the size of, well, a pop star?

We have, actually: Lada Gaga’s flying dress looks a lot like a globe-bearing treehopper painted white.

Fried Egg Jellyfish

Single Mediterranean jellyfish in the Mar Menor, Costa Calida, South Eastern Spain, EuropeEverybody loves a sequel. Since Gaga arrived at the 2011 Grammy Awards in an egg, she could take the next step and return in a costume based on the fried egg or egg yolk jellyfish. (Lady Gaga has taken inspiration from animals before—lobsterdeer, and Kermit the Frog among them.)

 

 

 

A fried egg jellyfish in the Mediterranean Sea off Spain. Photograph by Scfotos, Stuart Crump Visuals/Alamy

True, from one angle these jellyfish look like your breakfast hopped into the water and is making a swim for it, but from the side Cotylorhiza tuberculata is colorful, elegant, and would make a terrific hoop skirt.

On its underside it has eight folds of flesh called lappets, and attached to these are tentacles of varying lengths. Dashes of vivid blue and purple decorate the tips of tentacles between its oral arms—long, delicate appendages that help jellies catch prey.

If they were fried eggs, they’d have to be ostrich eggs—these jellies measure nearly a foot (0.3 meter) wide and are found mainly in the Mediterranean and sometimes the Adriatic and Aegean seas.

Bonus: Unlike most jellyfish, the fried egg is able to guide itself and doesn’t need to go with currents—very much like creative artists.

Psychedelic Frogfish

This dazzling psychedelic frogfish has something to teach pop stars hounded by paparazzi: Despite being visually stunning and having dodgy steering, it managed to elude not only cameras but all of humanity for centuries.

Psychedelic-Frogfish-600x398Psychedelic frogfish in Indonesia’s Banda Sea. Photograph by Waterframe, Alamy

 

 

 

 

The fish did this by squeezing into coral crevices and avoiding detection  until 2008, when divers spotted one in the harbor of Ambon Island, Indonesia.

Scientists confirmed it as a new species in 2009, and Ted Pietsch, curator of fishes at the University of Washington’s Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, named the creatureHistiophryne psychedelica in honor of its far-out coloration.

The animal also navigates like it’s a little high: Its curved tail gives it a swerving trajectory that Pietsch called “intoxicated,” quipping that the fish “should be cited for DUI.” (Related: “Psychedelic Fish Bounces Like a Ball.”)

H. psychedelia is also an anglerfish, but it sets itself apart by not having the characteristic lure coming out of its head and not changing its wavy peach, beige, and white colors.

These funky fish also have forward-looking eyes, like humans (fish usually have eyes on either side of their heads and see different things with each one).

Extravagant and forward-looking: Are there any better qualifications for a pop star wardrobe?

Gunnison Sage-Grouse

The Gunnison sage-grouse is a turkey-like bird that’s probably more wonderfully outfitted and a better dancer than many human entertainers. The bird uses the U.S. West—including parts of Colorado, Arizona, Utah, and New Mexico—as a stage. The weirdness of this bird’s mating display is so exceptional that if you click the link once, be warned: You’ll want to hit repeat.

Gunnison-Grouse-600x400A male Gunnison sage-grouse performing a courtship display. Photograph by Charles Melton/Alamy

 

 

 

Moreover, its appearance—long, wide, fluffy white collar; elaborate burst of tail feathers; a posh headdress; and two yellow air sacs on the chest that not only inflate during the dance but also make a popping sound—is perfectly Gaga.

That anything this outlandish exists and doesn’t have job in the music industry is too bad, but it’s sadder still that it might not be performing forever. The Gunnison sage-grouse, Centrocercus minimus, is listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s Red List of Threatened Species.

Nudibranchs

The term “sea slug” might not conjure images of candy-colored animals with graceful mobility and seemingly impossible variations, but nudibranchs have all those things: Check out this incredible photo gallery by National Geographic photographer David Doubilet.

Nudibranch-600x399Bornella anguilla sea slug in Cebu, Philippines. Photograph by Waterframe, Alamy

 

 

 

These marine invertebrates can be tiny (less than an inch [2.5 centimeters] long) or big (up to a foot [0.6 meter] long) and are found in oceans the world over.

Their endless supply of patterns can be either camouflage or warnings to predators that they carry chemical defenses derived from the toxins of their prey.

There are so many over-the-top nudibranchs that picking one to base a costume on is almost impossible, but Bornella anguilla has such a fierce, dramatic, Chinese-dragon style that its stage presence would certainly be irresistible.

Oh, what the heck, why not all of them? There are more than 3,000 species. That should cover Lady Gaga for at least a year.

Follow Liz Langley on Facebook and Twitter.

 5 Animals That Look Like Lady Gaga

Posted by Liz Langley in Weird & Wild on December 19, 2013

 

Holidays from the Heights

Only two sets of people can fly around the entire world in one night. One is rumored to reside at the North Pole; the others live on the International Space Station (ISS). And for all of them, the night-lit view of the planet is simply extraordinary.

Bask in the warm light of your computer screen and sample the festive sights of the season from the perspective of satellites and space station residents.

In November and December 2011, professional and amateur astronomers reveled in observing a sun-grazing comet that dove close to the Sun and survived for a return flight back to the outer solar system. Astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS) enjoyed their own surreal view of the comet as it appeared on Earth’s horizon on the day of the solstice.

ISS030-E-014350ISS Commander Dan Burbank captured a series of digital photographs of Comet Lovejoy on December 21, 2011, as it rose above Earth’s limb. The ISS was passing from eastern Australia southeast toward New Zealand, between 17:35:50 to 17:43:02 Universal Time (6:35 to 6:43 a.m. local time on December 22). Those still images were compiled into a time-lapse video that you can view here. In an interview with WDIV-TV, Burbank described the moment as “the most amazing thing I have ever seen in space.”

Note how the tail of the comet points away from the Sun even as the comet itself is moving in the same direction, away from our star. Every comet has two tails, one of ice and dust, the other of ions, or charged particles. The heat and pressure of sunlight sloughs off the ice and dust, pushing it away from the Sun. Likewise, the solar wind strips ions off of the comet surface, though not necessarily in the same direction as the tail of debris and ice. The ion tail is not visible in this image.

The comet, officially designated C/2011 W3 (Lovejoy), was discovered by Australian amateur astronomer Terry Lovejoy on November 27, 2011. It belongs to a group of comets known as the Kreutz sungrazers, which are thought to be pieces of a much larger comet that broke up centuries ago. The comets are termed sungrazers because their orbits take them quite near—and often into—the Sun.

Comet Lovejoy is remarkable for diving through the superheated solar corona (atmosphere) to within 120,000 kilometers of the Sun’s surface and surviving the encounter. The event was recorded by five NASA and European spacecraft.

In the ISS image above, you can also see green and yellow airglow paralleling the Earth’s horizon line (or limb) before it is overwhelmed by the light of the rising Sun. Airglow is the emission of light by atoms and molecules in the upper atmosphere after they are excited by ultraviolet radiation. In the video, small intermittent flashes of white lightning discharges also are visible over Earth’s surface.

Astronaut photograph ISS030-E-015491 was acquired on December 22, 2011, with a Nikon digital camera, and is provided by the ISS Crew Earth Observations experiment and Image Science & Analysis Laboratory, Johnson Space Center. The image was taken by the Expedition 30 crew. The image has been cropped and enhanced to improve contrast. Lens artifacts have been removed. The International Space Station Program supports the laboratory as part of the ISS National Lab to help astronauts take pictures of Earth that will be of the greatest value to scientists and the public, and to make those images freely available on the Internet. Additional images taken by astronauts and cosmonauts can be viewed at the NASA/JSC Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth. Caption by Michael Carlowicz, NASA Earth Observatory, and Melissa Dawson and William L. Stefanov, Jacobs/ESCG at NASA-JSC at NASA-JSC.

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ISS025-E-09858 Nile River Delta at night

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ISS032-E-017547 Istanbul at night

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If you happened to be flying a reindeer-harnessed sleigh through the sky on December 24th and 25th, the view might look pretty similar to what the ISS crew witnessed. You can follow such a holiday flight by visiting the NORAD tracking page, where satellites, fighter jets, and radar stations provide airborne reconnaissance for the jolly sleigh-rider in the red suit—who has special clearance one night per year.