Environmental Management Council Recruitment Meeting Postponed

Environmental Management Council Recruitment Meeting scheduled for 03/24/20 is postponed until further notice.

Welcome to The Rockland County Environmental Management Council (EMC) web page. The EMC was established by the Rockland County Legislature in 1973. Its members are volunteers representing Rockland County's five towns. They bring a variety of expertise and experiences from fields such as academia, non-profit, engineering, geology, business, marketing, public communications, and technology. They are appointed by the County Executive, confirmed by the Legislature, and sworn in by the County Clerk. The EMC works in a non-partisan, non-adversarial manner to support environmental improvement within the system.

On this web page you can find information about the EMC's mission, meetings, and membership; the Eleanor Burlingham Earth Day Contest and the Green Champion Award; examples of green infrastructure for storm water management; and clean(er) and more efficient energy infrastructure.

Note: This web page is for informational purposes only. The EMC does not endorse or promote goods and services offered by companies which may be referenced.

Our Mission

The Environmental Management Council preserves and protects Rockland County's natural resources through community outreach, public recognition of environmental achievements, education, and publicly advising on environmental issues and opportunities.

In support of its mission EMC's activities include:

  • Sponsoring the Eleanor Burlingham Earth Day Contest for school students to observe their interactions and interest in the environment, and presenting the annual Green Champion Award to organizations or individuals who consistently exemplify outstanding environmental stewardship.
  • Monitoring land use and development to help ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations, and submitting public written and oral testimony to regulatory commissions and planning boards.
  • Working with other agencies and organizations to preserve water resources by encouraging broader adoption of green infrastructure to better manage storm water run-off.
  • Identifying and promoting technologies and practices to reduce 'carbon footprints' and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Researching and promoting additional ways to reduce, reuse, and recycle in order to reduce waste streams in government, commercial, and residential settings.
  • Preserving and extending biodiversity by emphasizing the importance of native plants and controlling invasive plant species, among other initiatives.
  • Meeting regularly to discuss environmental issues and opportunities and progress toward the EMC's goals. Meetings are open to and may include presentations by the public.
  • When requested by the County Legislature, researching and providing opinions on environmental issues that may have significant impacts on the County and its residents.

Meetings and Membership

Our EMC's monthly meeting - open to the public - is usually held on the fourth Wednesday at  5:30-7pm in Allison-Parris County Office Building, New City. Meeting locations may vary depending on the season. Be sure to refer to the Agenda for the correct meeting location. The EMC may usually does not meet in the summer months of July and August. To learn about meeting updates and other environmental matters, please email laiblen@co.rockland.ny.us.

Members (13 seats, 4 vacancies)
Executive Director: Nicole Laible

Joanna Galdone- Vice Chair
Glenn Sungela - Recording Secretary 

Haverstraw: VACANT

William Herguth

Natalie Patasaw - Chair
Gillian Ballard 
Chana Friedenberg {At-Large Member}

Stony Point: VACANT

The EMC began meeting with Town Supervisors to share environment concerns and learn more about Town operations and local areas of concern. The board began meeting with Supervisors in 2016. Below is a list of Meeting Minutes:
Clarkstown Supervisor
Orangetown Supervisor

Listed below are past meetings Agendas and Minutes.  Previous years' meeting agenda, minutes, and other documents are available upon request by contacting the Rockland County Department of Environmental Resources at 845-364-2670 or env@co.rockland.ny.us

Agendas                 Minutes                                      
EMC Meeting Notice 03-24-2020  
EMC Agenda 10-23-19  
EMC Agenda 09-25-19  
EMC Agenda 06-26-19  
EMC Agenda 05-22-19 EMC Meeting Notes 05-22-19
EMC Agenda 04-24-19  
EMC Agenda 03-27-19  
EMC Agenda 02-27-19  
EMC Agenda 01-23-19  
EMC Meeting Dates 2019  

Eleanor Burlingham Earth Day Essay & Poster Contest

The EMC sponsors the Eleanor Burlingham Earth Day Essay Contest annually which encourages youths to go outside and observe interactions between humans, plants and animals.  Students submit essays to the EMC for review. Five winners are selected each year and a recognition ceremony takes place at the Allison-Parris Building in early June with the County Executive and other government officials.  The Contest was initiated in 1992 and is named after long time EMC member, Rockland Conservation Association member and active environmentalist, Eleanor Burlingham.  

The 2020 Earth Day Contest is now open! 

Starting March 1st, 2020, New York State will ban single use plastic bags from retail stores. That means Bring Your Own Bag!  Students are encouraged to write or draw about ways that this plastic bag ban will impact people and businesses in their community. How can you (students) reduce your use of plastic in your daily life?

Students have until May 15th, 2020, to submit their entries to the Rockland County Environmental Management Council, 50 Sanatorium Road, Building A, Room 614, Pomona, NY. Three essays and three posters will be selected as winners of the contest. Winning entries will be invited to the annual awards ceremony.

Photo credit: John Lyon
Image above illustrates the 2019 award ceremony for the EMC Essay & Poster contest.  EMC Chairperson, Natalie Patasaw and Glenn Sungela, Recording Secretary with Winners: Kalrens Berjuste, Cesar Vasquez, Murielle Lafontant, Joshua Simpson, Willi Lynch, Alyssa John, Natalie Arango, and Hannah Vaneck. 

Edward Brophy Green Champion Award

The EMC also presents the Edward Brophy Green Champion Award annually which is given to an organization, business or group who has shown an exemplary focus on the environment.  Edward Brophy was a local artist, avid outdoorsman, member of the Appalachian Mountain Club and strong supporter of the Environmental Defense Fund, as well as a long time EMC board member.  Recipients are publicly recognized at the EMC's potluck award dinner which has been hosted at Haverstraw Bay County Park, Dutch Garden and Kennedy Dells County Park.

The 2019 Green Champion Award was presented to the Blue Rock School at the annual award ceremony. Photo below illustrates County Executive Ed Day and EMC Chairperson Natalie Patasaw with Blue Rock School Teachers.


Village of Nyack

(2018) - The Village of Nyack staff, board and trustees were recognized for their dedication to sustainability. Projects include: The Nyack Tree Project, including a small nursery at BOCES; establishing the County's first Sustainability Desk;  Climate Smart Community designation; EPA Water-Sense Partner, amongst many other accomplishments.

Rockland Farm Alliance (RFA)

(2017) - RFA was honored by the RC EMC as the fifth annual Edward Brophy Green Champion Award winner. RFA was formed in 2008 and created the first Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in the County. RFA has lead discussions with state agencies to re-constituted the Agriculture and Farmland Protection Board, provided agricultural education to youths and adults and implemented a food waste reduction initiative.

Rockland Audubon Society (RAS)

(2016) - RAS was recognized for its wide variety of environmental achievements such as coordinating educational workshops and field outings for youths and adults as well as coordinating the Annual Christmas Bird Count and Birdathon, installing fishing line disposal units, hosting live animal shows, establishing a Bluebird Trail program and creating a butterfly garden at Kennedy Dells County Park.

Town of Clarkstown

(2015) - The Town of Clarkstown was recognized for being the first municipality in the state to install a large-scale solar panel array atop a closed landfill and the first municipality in Rockland to create a composting program for its residents. Additionally, the Town was also recognized for creating a concrete crushing facility at the Clarkstown transfer station.

Keep Rockland Beautiful (KRB)

(2014) - KRB was recognized for its 20+ years of coordinating roadside and waterway cleanups throughout the County, artful receptacles and Report a Litterbug programs. Additionally, its youth oriented education programs such as Earth Basic Environmental Awareness Training (Earth BEAT), Rockland Planning and Land Use Symposium (RPLUS) and the School Bah-A Thon.

The Village of Montebello

(2013) - The Village was recognized for initiating a series of environmental firsts in Rockland including the first electronic vehicle charging station, the first solar panel installation for government buildings, the first Tree City USA designation by the Arbor Day Foundation and the first NY State Climate Smart Community adopter.


Piermont Marsh Canoe Outing

Annual canoe outings are hosted by EMC board members. Visitors are able to canoe down the Sparkill Creek into the Hudson River and nearby tributaries. As a treat, participants get to visit exciting science projects taking place within the Marsh.

The 2019 Canoe Trip is schedule for July 19 from 1-4pm and August 16 from 9am-12pm.

Please see our cancellations page for up to date information on meeting, event, class and exam cancellations and/or postponements.