Tag: Environment

Nov 16

2022

No environmental review for new Bills stadium

Published by

When major league sports venues are built in New York, they almost always undergo a thorough environmental review before a shovel is put in the ground. That was the case for Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, Barclays Center and USB Arena in New York City. And it was the case for KeyBank Center and Sahlen Field in Buffalo, as well as other minor league baseball stadiums around the state, and a 14,000-seat soccer stadium in Rochester. Yet Erie County officials are poised to give Pegula Sports and Entertainment and the Buffalo Bills a free pass — called a negative declaration —[...]

Posted 2 weeks ago

Oct 31

2022

Monday Morning Read

Published by

ProPublica produced two stories on the former OxyChem plant in Niagara Falls that exposed workers and residents to asbestos – with dire health consequences. Our partners at WGRZ interviewed one of the ProPublica reporters who produced the stories. Hang onto your wallets, Sabres fans, the Pegulas have retained the sports consulting firm owned by Jerry Jones of the Dallas Cowboys and the SteinbreNners/New York Yankees to advise the team. For right now, it only involves advertising on jerseys, but you know it won’t stop there. The Cowboys and Yankees aren’t any good at winning championships anymore, but they have mastered the art of jacking up prices for fans.[...]

Posted 1 month ago

Oct 20

2022

A city Buffalo can learn from

Published by

Buffalo and Durham, North Carolina, are similar in some key ways. They both have about a quarter of a million residents. About four in 10 are Black. They also share a problem — a lack of trees in Black neighborhoods.  But Durham’s response — to develop a comprehensive tree planting plan — contrasts with Buffalo, which is cutting down as many as four trees for every tree it plants in East Side neighborhoods. The result: Durham is planting more than 1,500 trees a year, compared with about 300 in Buffalo. In fact, Durham planted more trees last year than Buffalo[...]

Posted 1 month ago

Oct 19

2022

Federal dollars could help re-tree East Side

Published by

The City of Buffalo spends a lot of money — $568 million this budget year.  Most of it is spent on cops and firefighters. Very little is spent on planting and maintaining trees, which play an important role in the health of city residents. In fact, the city’s population of trees is shrinking, as two trees are cut down for every one that is planted. Help could be on the way, however.  The federal government has earmarked $1.5 billion under the Inflation Reduction Act to pay for the planting and maintenance of trees in urban centers. The money will be[...]

Posted 1 month ago

Jul 25

2022

Buffalo is slowly losing its trees

Published by

 Buffalo is cutting down twice as many trees as it’s planting. And residents are noticing the loss. “It’s nothing like when I was a child,” said Catherine Faust, a Highland Avenue resident in the city’s Elmwood Village.  From 2016 through 2020, the city cut down more than 4,300 trees. They only planted about 1,900 new ones.  An Investigative Post analysis found the rate of tree loss is greater in parts of the East Side. Masten District, for example, lost four times as many trees as were planted. “It is one of the most despicable things that I can imagine[...]

Posted 4 months ago

May 10

2022

Q&A: Explaining cryptocurrency & blockchain

Published by

Dr. Bina Ramamurthy is director of the Blockchain ThinkLab at the University at Buffalo. She’s also a crypto miner herself. That puts her at the forefront of the industry, which poses a challenge to traditional currency and has raised environmental concerns because of its demand for energy. Blockchain and cryptocurrency are mysteries to many people, so to understand the interview, let’s define what we’re talking about. Blockchain, introduced in 2011, involves computers and servers programmed to solve complicated mathematical problems on an ongoing, virtual ledger. This work is managed by so-called “crypto miners,” who earn cryptocurrency – most commonly Bitcoin[...]

Posted 7 months ago

Feb 24

2022

Study links Tonawanda Coke to toxins

Published by

Soil contamination near Tonawanda Coke most likely comes from the now-shuttered plant, a just-released study has found. A previous phase of the study of soil samples taken from the town and city of Tonawanda, Grand Island and Buffalo found elevated levels of toxins. The second phase of the study, released Thursday at a virtual meeting, evaluated 95 soil samples.  An unspecified, but small number of those samples contained elevated levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, which are carcinogenic chemical compounds produced as a byproduct of burning coal and other fossil fuels.  Researchers determined with 85 percent confidence that Tonawanda[...]

Posted 9 months ago

Feb 20

2022

‘Completely stupid’ burning of toxins

Published by

A Niagara Falls waste incineration plant burned almost 13 tons of firefighting foam over a three-year period, potentially releasing into the air and water insidious toxins linked in studies to infertility, birth defects, developmental disorders, compromised immune systems and cancer.  When questioned by state officials, Covanta Niagara at first denied it. Eventually, the company admitted burning “a small amount” of the material — aqueous film-forming foam, or AFFF — but claimed it didn’t know what it was burning. “That is not a small amount,” said David Bond, a Bennington College professor who fought to stop a waste incinerator doing the[...]

Posted 9 months ago