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Harlem Meer
Blog April 18, 2019

For Earth Day, Check Out Another Side of Our Urban Environment

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If you see New York City as a concrete jungle, you’re not looking close enough. Yes, we have our canyons of skyscrapers—but we also have farms and campgrounds. Yes, right here in the city. 

In fact, you can pitch a tent and sleep under the stars in a national park located less than 12 miles from JFK Airport. Or explore a wildlife preserve that’s half that distance from our runways. They’re all part of the Gateway National Recreation Area, a part of the National Parks Service that offers seasonal camping and a variety of activities, including biking, birding, boating, hiking, horseback riding, and more—all in the great outdoors of the City of New York. 

There’s also a Junior Ranger program for kids, who can get a free activity book at Floyd Bennett Field, Jacob Riis Park, or the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Preserve and earn a Junior Ranger badge and patch. 

Beautiful bird found at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge 

Credit: Tom Perry

Then there are our world-famous parks, the urban nature marvels of the High Line, the farming and composting projects on Governor’s Island, and the green markets selling farm-fresh products throughout the city. It all adds up to a greener perspective than you might have imagined. And Earth Day is the perfect time to celebrate New York’s relationship with nature and conservation.

Enjoy the greenery right in the city on the High Line

Credit: Julienne Schaer

Governor's Island stays strong with its mission

Credit: Kate Glicksberg

As we reported in our March 20 post, Getting to Know the Real Native New Yorkers, The Redhawk Native American Arts Council will host its third annual celebration of the Earth in Sunset Park, Brooklyn on April 20. The event is presented in collaboration with the New York Parks Department.

Shoppers find diverse produce in Sunset Park

Credit: Tagger Yancey IV

This year’s Earth Day Initiative activities take place at a Union Square “action center and art installation” open from noon to 6:30 p.m. on April 23. Inspired by a variety of environmental themes, artists will create works of art live on site. And people who attend will get information about how to “take simple actions to make a positive impact on the environment” and “share their own sustainability stories of environmental solutions they see or want in their own lives and communities.” 

You can also learn more about the Do Just 1 Thing project or explore opportunities to extend the spirit of Earth Day throughout the year by getting involved in sustainable food or volunteering programs. Want to know more about the city’s plans to protect the environment? New York is one of the original signers of the We Are Still In declaration in support of the Paris Climate Agreement. Click here to read about New York’s Climate Action Commitments.

Governor's Island stays green

Credit: Kate Glicksberg

And as you pass through Terminal 4 on your way to or from our city, we hope you’ll appreciate the steps we’ve taken to protect the planet. For example, more than half of all waste that leaves the terminal is recycled—you can help us to take this even further by using the recycling bins found throughout T4. All our restaurants compost, and we recycle and repurpose used oil. We designed the terminal to use one third less water than comparable buildings, and we’re LEED Gold Certified. So we don’t just wish you a happy Earth Day. We give you our promise that, like New York City, T4 is wholly committed to conservation and environmentalism—so we can all celebrate Earth Day on a cleaner planet for many years to come.

Header photo credit: Alex Lopez

T4 Tip

T4 Tip

T4 is a work of art. Really! You’ll find our private collection of world-class paintings, sculptures, and mobiles on display throughout the terminal.

With ongoing roadway construction at JFK Airport, your journey may have significant delays.

We recommend our T4 guests to allow some extra time to reach the terminal. Travelers are also encouraged to pre-book parking 48 hours in advance to guarantee parking and avoid the surcharge by clicking here. Alternatively, parking is available at Federal Circle, and take a transfer from there to T4 with the AirTrain.

Worried about long lines at security?

With Reserve powered by CLEAR, you can save your spot ahead of time and avoid the wait. No checked-in bag? You may go directly to the TSA checkpoint at level 1, on the east of the terminal.

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