The Newtown Creek Nature Walk got a little Earth Day loving last week from the community, National Grid and the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).
On Friday, April 26th, volunteers planted flower beds, swept debris and cut weeds at the quarter mile open space in the heart of Greenpoint’s industrial zone. In addition, National Grid presented the Newtown Creek Monitoring Committee (NCMC) with a check for $50,000 for future maintenance of the Nature Walk.
Ken Daly, President of National Grid New York said his company chose to support the Nature Walk after community leaders identified it as “an important community resource in need of attention and care.”
Daly was at the creek Friday to present the check to some of those leaders, including legendary Greenpoint activist, Irene Klementowicz. The NCMC co-chair (along with Paul Turci) explained the importance of building and maintaining the Nature Walk. “We worked for many years for the Nature Walk to give people access to the water. This was the first area that allowed us to get close to it.”
From the beginning, Klementowicz championed the Nature Walk as a place to explore and learn about the historical and scientific aspects of Newtown Creek and the surrounding neighborhood. “I insisted that they bring in children and have someone to explain the beauty of waterfront access to them,” she said. “Now students come by bus for tours. They enjoy seeing what’s happened over the years and how our lives will be better with better water and air.”
Assemblyman Joe Lentol, Councilmember Steve Levin and Borough President Marty Markowitz also assisted in the Nature Walk’s Earth Day makeover. “There is no better way to care for the environment, especially on Earth Day, than ensuring that it’s appreciated, and this contribution from National Grid and the hard work of the NCMC definitely goes the distance,” said Lentol.