For immediate release: August 11, 2014 For more information: Eric Siy 668-5913 x304 or Jessica Rubin x302
August 11, 2014 (Lake George, NY) The FUND for Lake George will hold its Annual Meeting on Saturday, August 16th, from 9:00am to 11:00am, at the Sagamore resort in Bolton Landing. Free and open to the public, this year’s meeting will showcase a series of historic “firsts” for Lake George protection.
Headlining the meeting will be latest progress of The Jefferson Project at Lake George, The FUND’s bold collaboration with IBM and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to make Lake George “the global model for sustained ecosystem understanding and protection.” Also featured will be The S.A.V.E. (Stop Aquatic inVasives from Entering) Lake George Partnership, whose role proved pivotal to State adoption of a mandatory boat inspection program earlier this year. The Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Prevention Program is the first of its kind east of the Mississippi. Founding S.A.V.E. members will be presented with The FUND’s James D. Corbett Award at the meeting for their “outstanding leadership in pursuing sustained protection of Lake George.”
Stunning video displays from The Jefferson Project to be shown at the event include a full-color “fly-through” of the Lake’s bathymetry (underwater topography) and surrounding watershed. This marks a first for Lake George—and the world—as the most advanced digital map of a freshwater lake system ever produced, providing the necessary foundation for applied understanding of Lake health. Also being shown for the first time will be video models of water circulation, meteorology, and stream runoff for Lake George. These and other pioneering tools of The Jefferson Project embody a quantum leap in knowing how the Lake functions and how a complex array of stressors now threaten the Lake’s natural ecology. A lake-wide sensor network will soon be deployed for real-time monitoring of Lake conditions.
“Unprecedented understanding of the Lake George ecosystem will inform a new generation of public and private measures to curb mounting threats and achieve lasting protection,” said Jeff Killeen, Chairman of The FUND’s Board of Trustees. “Never before have so many people and resources been amassed on behalf of Lake George. This meeting is a testament to the leadership and partnership that will ensure our success in safeguarding Lake George,” said Killeen.
Speaking on The Jefferson Project will be Dr. John Kelly, Senior Vice President and Director of Research for IBM (as well as a FUND Trustee) and Dr. Harry Kolar, IBM Distinguished
Engineer for Sensor-Based Solutions. Dr. Jon Dordick, Vice President for Research at RPI will share plans for the new “visualization lab” now being built at Rensselaer’s Darrin Fresh Water Institute (DFWI) in Bolton Landing. The lab will serve as research and technological hub of The Jefferson Project, where all lake science data collected will be integrated for advanced analytics and modeling. When done later this year, the lab’s centerpiece will be a large format “visualization wall” connected to IBM’s Watson super-computer facilities at RPI and IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights. The state-of-the-art lab at DFWI will possess computing power capable of performing 188 trillion operations per second for modeling and forecasting the Lake’s physical, chemical, and biological processes.
Also speaking at the meeting will be Lake George Village Mayor Bob Blais, S.A.V.E.’s Honorary Chairman; Dave Wick, Executive Director of the Lake George Park Commission, which is administering the AIS Prevention Program; and Lake George Waterkeeper Chris Navitsky who will brief attendees on The FUND’s plans for a Low Impact Development (LID) Certification System, another first for Lake George. The new certification system will guide public and private development projects throughout the watershed in applying LID principles and practices to minimize negative impacts on Lake health.
This year’s recipient of The FUND’s Langmuir Award for Excellence in Development and Stewardship will be Dr. Jeff Short. As special advisor to The FUND, Dr. Short has been instrumental to developing The Jefferson Project, stressing the need to understand the Lake “from physics to fish” in forging the critical path to sustained protection. Scheduled to present the award is Roger Summerhayes, grandson of Dr. Irving Langmuir, the Nobel Prize winning scientist with longstanding ties to Lake George. At the meeting, Dr. Short will discuss conclusions and recommendations of “The State of the Lake” report, soon to be issued by The FUND and DFWI. The report analyzes 30 years of water chemistry data collected by DFWI from 1980 to 2009 with underwriting by The FUND. Dr. Short is a co-author of the report and his remarks will focus on priority threats to Lake George water quality requiring immediate attention. Research findings of the report prompted establishment of The Jefferson Project. Moreover, report recommendations have guided Jefferson Project implementation.
The Annual Meeting is free to attend and open to the public. Please RSVP online at fundforlakegeorge.org/2014AnnualMeeting
The FUND for Lake George is a privately funded not-for-profit organization dedicated to the protection of Lake George. Formed in 1980, The FUND applies a science-based approach to protection focused on Lake George water quality and the overall health of the Lake George watershed. The FUND pursues this mission through support of long-term scientific research, direct advocacy, and strategic partnerships with diverse public and private interests. Mounting threats to the water quality and natural character of Lake George, as revealed by latest research, compelled The FUND to launch its Legacy Strategy in 2013, with one driving goal: stopping the present decline of water quality and achieving sustained protection of Lake George for the next generation. The Legacy Strategy embraces environmental and economic imperatives as required to fulfill this goal. The FUND sponsors the Lake George Waterkeeper among other programs on Lake George. The FUND for Lake George is managed by a Board of Trustees and maintains an office in Lake George. For more on the FUND’s work, visit fundforlakegeorge.org.