The mountains of dirt rose from the earth like the burial mounds of a forgotten tribe or the tombs of forgotten kings, stretching nearly endlessly across the landscape. From a safe distance, we looked on in silence, watching as the massive machines tore at the soil with their sharpened teeth, opening its secrets to the sky, digging the foundations of the civilization that would succeed our own.
By any measure, a report that at least two East Hampton Town employees may have been sickened after being exposed to fumes from spray-foam insulation barrels they were ordered to prepare for reuse as trash cans is bizarre. Both the worker who blew the whistle and the town safety official who shut it down deserve credit. But this risky, and probably illegal, practice has been going on for years, which suggests that far more oversight of some town departments is necessary.
We were surprised to read recently that New York City prohibits rentals of fewer than 30 days. This is in an effort to keep apartments from being turned into de facto hotels and to protect the interests of neighbors and neighborhoods. Contrast that with East Hampton Town’s confusing regulations, which allow four sub-two-week rentals a year, provided that only two are in the same six-month period and that they are registered with the town clerk’s office.
President Trump’s attack on the Obama-era Clean Power Plan should be taken very seriously on the East End. Long Island’s hundreds of miles of bay and ocean shoreline are highly vulnerable to the increased erosion and worsened storms associated with global warming. Walking away from efforts to protect future generations, as well as the natural environment, is shortsighted, to put it mildly.