A story in The Star last week about the Montauk Observatory got us thinking about the number of opportunities here for getting in touch with nature. The observatory, now about to be operational at the Ross School in East Hampton, offers the farthest reach: a powerful telescope that can be booked remotely to view distant celestial objects over the internet.
“It’s all the same fuckin’ mall, man,” I said to Mary as we headed west from Pittsburgh last week on Route 80 in search of greener pastures, which we were to find in Perrysburg, Ohio, whose historic district reminds one of Sag Harbor on a river.
Today is September 11, 1992. It is the start of yet another school year. There have been 34 of them behind the desk, and another 16 in the rows. This year’s setting is an old subbasement gym that has been partially converted into a computer room. It is here that she will daily meet with her special needs class. The class is scheduled for fourth period — that is, if she can get in.
Truer words about global warming and sea level rise have rarely, if ever, been uttered in connection with what East Hampton Town government is facing: “Literally, the shape of our town is going to change. We’re better off having a plan.” The speaker was Jeremy Samuelson, who is leading a new effort to come to grips with what lies ahead. What lies ahead looks bad. According to New York State’s most conservative estimate, the bays and oceans will rise by 1.3 feet by 2050. This is enough for Napeague Harbor to expand to Route 27, for example, potentially cutting off Montauk and leading to significant questions about how to replace inundated infrastructure. What will remain of high land along Gerard Drive at Accabonac Harbor would be a pair of islands. Erosion nearly everywhere along the beaches will only further exacerbate the tension between protecting private properties with bulkheads and the inevitable loss of public beaches that would result. So far, the coastal policies of governm