Dear EarthTalk: I understand that mountaintop removal as a way of coal mining is incredibly destructive. Didn’t a report come out recently that named major banks that were funding this activity? — Seth Jergens, New York, NY
STATE – Officials at the FEMA/State Joint Field Office announced that the Disaster Recovery Centers in New Jersey will be closed for Columbus Day, Monday, Oct. 10. They will re-open on Tuesday, Oct. 11 and resume normal hours of 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Dear EarthTalk: I’m interested in getting a new tattoo, but recently found out that red tattoo ink contains mercury. Is this true of other tattoo inks as well? Are there any eco-friendly alternatives?
— John P., Racine, WA
UNION – Nationally known piano and singing sensation Bob Malone will perform at the Salem Roadhouse Café tonight, Oct. 8, at 8 p.m. The door will open at 7:30 p.m. and admission is $15 per person (additional donations will be accepted.) All proceeds benefit Haiti Earthquake Relief.
TRENTON – An Irvington man was convicted of participating in a drug ring that shipped more than 500 pounds of marijuana from Arizona to New Jersey, Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Criminal Justice Director Stephen J. Taylor announced. Four other members of the drug ring pleaded guilty on the eve of the trial.
Flea Market • Oct. 8 from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. – Divine Mercy Parish will hold a flea market in the parish center and parking lots on Pershing Avenue in Carteret. Indoor tables are $15; outdoor spaces are $10. Info: call Debbie at 1-732-541-5736.
ELIZABETH–Benedictine Academy students, faculty, staff and administrators joined in a Walkathon on Oct. 5 and raised over $2,500 to contribute to the American Cancer Society. A sea of participants wearing sneakers, jeans, and Benedictine Academy T-shirts, enjoyed a healthy walk on a beautiful fall day.
CARTERET – Dr Pepper Snapple Group and national non-profit KaBOOM! awarded Carteret a $15,000 Let’s Play Playground Construction grant as announced in August.
UNION — Lorraine J Alkonis, a Clark resident and distinguished educator with both the Elizabeth and Rahway school districts, was honored at a retirement celebration on Oct. 6 at the Suburban Golf Club in Union. The packed room of guests included family members, friends, colleagues from the education profession, and leaders from the Clark Township and schools communities.