Categories for GreenPost

Nov 7

2017

Testing to get the lead out

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The crisis in Flint, Mich., put a spotlight on the risks of lead in drinking water. The public water supplies in Buffalo and surrounding areas are not facing the same problems as Flint. Nonetheless, lead still poses a risk here because of our old infrastructure and housing stock. In fact, experts say there is always a risk of lead leaching into your tap water if you have a lead service line. Days after my story “Looking for lead (in all the wrong places)” in August 2016, I got calls from concerned Buffalo residents who wanted to know how they could[...]

Posted 5 years ago

Oct 5

2017

The DEC’s puzzling fixation on Falls overflows

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The Niagara Falls Water Board is once again in the crosshairs of the state Department of Environmental Conversation for sewer overflows – a problem that plagues communities across the state. The Water Board reported three separate sewer overflows to the DEC on Wednesday. A total of 23.8 million gallons of untreated sewage mixed with dirty stormwater gushed into the Lower Niagara Gorge following a rainstorm. “These continued violations are wholly unacceptable,” the DEC said in a press release. Water Board officials said the rain overtaxed its sewer system, spewing raw sewage and stormwater into the river. Problem is, this happens[...]

Posted 5 years ago

Jul 11

2017

Removing the muck from Scajaquada Creek

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The ongoing restoration of Scajaquada Creek has reached one of the most-polluted sections in Delaware Park. For three years Investigative Post has reported on the creek’s disgusting condition. The chief causes of the pollution are the Buffalo and Cheektowaga sewer systems, which spew raw sewage into the creek when deluged by storm water. As a result of decades worth of sewer overflows, the creek bottom is layered with black foul smelling muck. Both Buffalo and Cheektowaga do have plans to address the sewer overflows problems. On Monday, crews began dredging a badly polluted section of the creek by Hoyt Lake.[...]

Posted 6 years ago

Jun 21

2017

Mayor won’t enforce recycling rules

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The curbside recycling rate in Buffalo continues to lag behind the national average. In 2016, Buffalo reported a curbside recycling rate of 15 percent, a negligble increase from the previous year. That’s still well below the national average of 25 percent for curbside programs. The curbside rate is based primarily on paper, plastic, glass and other materials that residents place in the green totes. Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown visited the Modern Disposal plant on Tuesday to accept a $62,500 check for the city’s recycling education fund. The city’s contract with Modern requires the company to finance a portion of the city’s program outreach[...]

Posted 6 years ago

Mar 27

2017

Wheatfield landfill subject of lawsuit

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Current and former residents of neighborhoods near a toxic landfill allege in a lawsuit that “ultra-hazardous” chemicals migrated onto their properties, making some of them sick. The 65 plaintiffs contend the landfill off Nash Road, which is owned by the Town of Wheatfield, is the source of the contamination. Many of plaintiffs are or were residents of North Tonawanda, which borders the landfill. They are asking the state Supreme Court in Niagara County to award them damages, including money to cover medical care, because of what they claim is the town’s negligence. The lawsuit names the Town of Wheatfield and seven companies as defendants: Occidental[...]

Posted 6 years ago

Mar 2

2017

State still behind the curve on lead poisoning

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The state Department of Health is providing free testing for lead in drinking water, but the $1.5 million allocated to the pilot program won’t go very far. At $70 per test, the program would provide testing for some 21,400 households across the state. Nonetheless, the program is a step in the right direction that will inform people about the dangers of lead poisoning and lead in drinking water. Lead is a toxic metal harmful to the developing brains and nervous systems of young children. But the state still falls short when it comes to combating lead poisoning, which remains a serious problem in[...]

Posted 6 years ago

Jan 26

2017

City schools want to test for lead poisoning

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A Buffalo Public Schools official says that the district wants to respond to the city’s serious lead poisoning problem with a sense of urgency. But a district proposal to test children for lead in schools is not getting support from the Erie County Health Department. “It just seems it would be so easy to test the untested children,” said Will Keresztes, the school district’s chief of intergovernmental affairs, planning and community engagement. “Why can’t that happen when the school district is so interested in making that happen?” This was just one of many policies and best practices discussed at a roundtable Thursday[...]

Posted 6 years ago

Jan 18

2017

Cuomo’s clean water proposal lacks details

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Update 11:14 a.m Jan. 18.: The governor did release some – not all – details Tuesday night about his proposal to spend $2 billion statewide on water quality and clean drinking water projects. First, the money is spread out over five years. So, that’s $400 million a year for five years. What remains unclear is how the money will be distributed. There are numerous programs this money could go to and the governor was short on those details Tuesday night. According to his capital plan, “The Executive Budget includes $2 billion to finance water quality capital projects to ensure continued access[...]

Posted 6 years ago