Press Release 3/6/12 – Mayor’s Reception

Prior to the Natalie Merchant Concert, Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., Heinz Award Recipient, will announce her financial awards at the Mayor’s Reception

Ithaca NY, March 6, 2012- The following release is being issued by the Finger Lakes CleanWaters Initiative :

The Fight Against Hydrofracking

Binghamton Mayor Matthew T. Ryan will be hosting a press reception for Heinz Award Recipient Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D. The reception is sponsored by Damiani Wine Cellars and Brewery Ommegang.

Mayors Reception for Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., Saturday March 10 Forum Theatre, Binghamton NY, 236 Washington Street 13901. Reception will begin at 6:00 p.m. until showtime at 7:00 p.m. Press and reception guests will be admitted starting at 5:30 p.m.

Often described as “the Rachel Carson of our times”, or alternatively “A Poet with a Knife” Dr. Steingraber will speak after the Horse Flies opening set at the Concert.

Her Heinz award came with a $100,000 unrestricted cash prize and she is donating it to the fight against hydrofracking. (This Link for Sandra Steingrabers reasons)

She won the award for highlighting the link between toxic chemicals and diseases through her written work, as well as engaging the public as a cancer survivor.

Dr. Steingraber was diagnosed with bladder cancer at 20, after growing up in an area polluted by industrial toxins. Her book, Living Downstream, was made into a full-length documentary in 2010. Her latest book is Raising Elijah: Protecting Our Children in an Age of Environmental Crisis.

Sandra at the Southern Tier CleanWaters Symposium, June 2011

In Washington D.C., during her acceptance speech, when she announced her intent to devote her award to the fight against hydrofracking, the room broke out into spontaneous applause and cheers

“Fracking is wrong. Sooner or later, steel and concrete disintegrates. Sooner or later, gas wells open portals of contamination between drinking water aquifers and the toxic materials held in the bedrock below. Doing fracking “right” simply means building time bombs with longer fuses. There are no places in New York and no children in New York that we are willing to sacrifice.” –Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., Biologist.

Proceeds from the Natalie Merchant Benefit Concert will go to future event based education and awareness, including this summers second annual Big Splash Concert Series.

Contact:, Photos, biography, video at, 607 351-0719, Mayor Matthew T. Ryan: Andrew Block 607.772.7001. Finger Lakes CleanWaters Initiative, Chris Tate 607 351-3768, Jon McNamara, 607 761-1572. Concert info at

Tickets available at Find us on Facebook,   Sponsers at,