CHENANGO COUNTY – New York Regional Interconnect refers to the path along the Marcy railroad track as a no-man’s land, but a closer look reveals that vast expanses of land are actually home to not only thousands of families and farms, but to thousands of cows that produce millions-of-dollars worth of milk and meat products for New York City.
“There’s ‘nothing’ there,” is a sentiment we’ve heard echoed repeatedly from New York Regional Interconnect executives as justification for running a mega 400-kilovolt DC power line through the bucolic towns and farms of Central New York. Its purpose would be to deliver additional energy to the people of New York City.
Ironically, those very same urban dwellers rely on farms along www.evesun.com/topics/news/NYRI/">NYRI’s proposed path of “nothings” for their liquid milk and milk-related products (i.e., butter, cheese), as well as for beef and pork.
Central New York is one of the last agricultural regions in the state, and is a large producer of New York’s leading agricultural product: milk. In fact, milk accounts for one-half of New York’s total agricultural receipts. Production in 2005 was 11.7 billion pounds with a preliminary value of $1.91 billion. Add to that fact that the livestock production from the region has increased, and it’s easy to see how New York marketed 246 million pounds of meat during 2005, bringing in $190 million in cash receipts. Sales from cattle and calves accounted for $173 million, hogs and pigs returned $13.0 million, and sheep and lambs provided $3.67 million.
A Closer Look:
If hovering overhead in a corporate helicopter or jet, www.evesun.com/topics/news/NYRI/">NYRI executives and New York politicians might easily misconstrue open spaces and little “dots” below as “nothing,” so let us engage in a virtual landing amid these rolling hills so we can all see just who the “nothings” are and what they do for the state of New York:
The first is Indian Camp Farm — one of the farms in the path of the www.evesun.com/topics/news/NYRI/">NYRI power line.
David S. Kross, 66, his son, Andrew, 34, and four employees produce approximately 2,300 gallons per day of milk for delivery to New York City. They do so currently within the embrace of hundreds of acres sitting beneath pristine skies and alongside a meandering Chenango River, a tributary of the Susquehanna River that stretches along 90 miles.