Honeywell Executive Shares Insights on the Importance of Community Partnerships and Collaboration
Kate Adams, Honeywell’s senior vice president and general counsel, recently shared the story of the successful restoration of Onondaga Lake during her keynote address at CenterState CEO’s 2017 Annual Meeting. The luncheon was held at the Nicholas J. Pirro Convention Center in Syracuse. It is Central New York’s largest annual gathering of business and community leaders.
“I want to congratulate the people at Honeywell, who have worked with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation and with local government to make sure that the next generations will know Syracuse as ‘the city on the lake’ in Central New York,” said New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul.
“Many in this community, when talking about the cleanup of Onondaga Lake, used to say, ‘Not in my lifetime,’” said Jim Fox, CenterState CEO chairman and OBG chief executive officer. “But, Honeywell changed the paradigm, and worked with stakeholders across government, the scientific community, and the public to implement a plan that was not only good for the environment, but for the broader Central New York community.”
“Honeywell has been at the center of one of this community’s most ambitious undertakings – the cleanup of Onondaga Lake. We were excited to have Kate share her perspective on Honeywell’s commitment to developing collaborative solutions that helped restore our lake to its rightful place as a remarkable community asset,” said Robert Simpson, CenterState CEO president. “As we look through the lens of history, this project serves as a reminder, and a model, for what can be achieved when we come together with a bold, long-term vision and take action to break through our most pressing challenges to drive transformative outcomes.”
During the event, Adams announced that the dredging and capping of Onondaga Lake are now complete. She reflected on the achievements, energy, expertise, and passion of the team that engaged in groundbreaking collaborative work on the largest sediment cleanup in the country. In addition, she spoke about Honeywell’s focus on technical excellence, dialogue with regulators, community engagement, corporate citizenship, and an unwavering goal to bring the best science to the lake cleanup.
“This is a remarkable and unprecedented accomplishment,” said Adams. “This is your lake. This is your success. This is happening in our lifetimes.”
Adams also mentioned that federal and state agencies recently announced 20 new projects designed to increase public access, provide new fishing piers and boat docks, and enhance and preserve about 1,400 acres of valuable habitat in the Onondaga Lake watershed. One of the projects includes extending the Erie Canalway Trail from Camillus to the western shoreline and would continue the extension of the Onondaga Lake Loop the Lake Trail.
Habitat restoration, a major focus of the cleanup, continues in 2017. On the shores of Onondaga Lake and along the lake’s tributaries, Honeywell is improving 87 acres of wetlands and planting about 1.1 million native plants, shrubs, and trees. To date, 74 acres of wetlands have been created or enhanced and nearly 600,000 native plants, trees, and shrubs now provide diverse habitat for more than 230 wildlife species.
For more information on the Onondaga Lake cleanup, please visit www.lakecleanup.com.