Cayuga Lake, the longest and widest of the Finger Lakes in New York, boasts more than just scenic beauty. It serves as a vital source of clean drinking water for over 100,000 people, attracts tourists, and supports a thriving local economy.

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However, Finger Lakes residents say that this precious natural resource is now facing a serious threat that demands immediate attention.

In September, a concerned resident named Stephanie Redmond created a petition at with a plea to help save Cayuga Lake.

The petition, which already has nearly 2,000 signatures, points out that a multinational conglomerate is considering selling its rights to the land surrounding and beneath Cayuga Lake with no regard for the community that heavily relies on it.

Redmond says that the potential sale raises significant concerns about water quality, ecosystem preservation, and the overall well-being of the Finger Lakes region.

Redmond notes that decades of salt mining around Cayuga and Seneca Lakes have resulted in higher salinity levels that endanger both human health and the local aquatic ecosystem. Furthermore, Redmond points out that there is an alarming risk that a mine collapse could permanently increase the lake's salinity.

Redmond's petition urges Governor Hochul and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to step in and enforce some critical measures. The requests are as follows:

Independent Environmental Review

An impartial and thorough environmental review must be conducted, free from any influence or financial ties with the multinational conglomerate. This unbiased assessment will uncover the potential hazards associated with the mine, including the risk of collapse, salinization, and other adverse consequences.

Financial Responsibility

The multinational conglomerate or any future buyer should be obliged to provide a significant environmental bond of $10 billion to New York State. This measure ensures that sufficient funds are available to mitigate any unforeseen environmental risks effectively.

Transparency and Accountability

The multinational conglomerate should not be exempt from public scrutiny. The company must be required to disclose vital information on its mining operations, profits, and the impact on the health of Cayuga Lake. New York State should revoke the multinational conglomerate's trade secret status, ensuring transparency and accountability.

End-of-Life Plan

If the independent review recommends the permanent closure of the mine, New York State must take immediate action to demand an environmentally sound plan for the mine's shutdown.

Redmond is asking all residents and businesses not only of the Finger Lakes but those from throughout New York to "join us in calling on Governor Hochul and New York State to take this vital step while they still can."

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