Tag: Environment

Mar 4

2021

Gambini discusses West Valley on WBFO

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Phil Gambini reported earlier this week about $20.3 million in settlements paid by the federal government to 59 former employees at the West Valley Demonstration Project. The workers had documented cases of cancer or other serious illnesses related to their work at the facility. Other claims are pending and many former employees apparently are unaware of the compensation program. Phil discussed his story Wednesday with Jay Moran on WBFO.  

Posted 2 years ago

Mar 1

2021

Cancer plagues West Valley nuke workers

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David Pyles says he lives on painkillers and moves with the help of a cane and walker. He worked for five years at the West Valley Demonstration Project, a failed experiment to process spent nuclear fuel. “What we were doing was insane. We were dealing with so much radiation,” he told Investigative Post from his home in New Hampshire.  “I’ve got absolutely no joints left in my knees — my knees are gone, my ankles are gone and my hips are gone,” he said.  “I wonder if it’s from working in that bathtub full of radiation.” Pyles was one of[...]

Posted 2 years ago

Nov 6

2019

Toxins at Niagara Falls airbase

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The Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station has landed on an ignoble list. The facility ranks seventh on a list of the 100 U.S. military sites most contaminated with PFAS, or per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances. That’s according to a report issued in early October by the Environmental Working Group, based on data procured from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Defense. PFAS is a family of chemicals linked in animal studies to infertility, birth defects, developmental disorders and cancer. PFAS compounds have been used commercially in a wide variety of products since the 1950s. They include the[...]

Posted 3 years ago

Oct 23

2019

Heaney talks data centers on ‘Pressroom

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Susan Arbetter and Jim Heaney discuss two Investigative Post stories that published this week regarding a proposal to build state-subsidized data centers in western and central New York. The interview aired on The Capitol Pressroom.  

Posted 3 years ago

Oct 23

2019

Questionable data center assumptions

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An alliance of environmental, community organizations and local governments support a plan to build massive data centers in two upstate towns, including Somerset in Niagara County.  Project backers contend the data centers would help the environment, provide jobs to displaced workers and replenish the tax coffers of local governments.  “It really is a win-win-win for the community, the environment and for workers,” Lisa Dix, senior New York campaign manager for Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, told Investigative Post. There is reason to question those assumptions, however. The project calls for new steel structures to be built on the near-defunct coal[...]

Posted 3 years ago

Sep 3

2019

Turning a blind eye to environmental risks

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You’d think that the construction of a million square feet of manufacturing space on a brownfield along the Buffalo River would warrant a thorough environmental investigation before shovels bit into the soil. And you’d be wrong. The Tesla plant in South Buffalo was built on a former Superfund site — once home to Republic Steel, Donner Hanna Coke and Feine Steel, among other historic industrial polluters. The site borders the environmental debacle that was (and is) the Hickory Woods residential development, which was poisoned by the use as fill of toxic materials created by those plants. Prior to its purchase[...]

Posted 3 years ago

Apr 12

2019

Developer pauses wind power project

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  The developers of a proposed wind farm on the shores of Lake Ontario have put the project on hold. Apex Clean Energy has been working on plans to build 47 wind turbines in the towns of Somerset and Yates, about 50 miles northeast of Buffalo. Many residents oppose the projects, saying the wind turbines would will change the character of their rural communities. Federal conservation authorities have raised concerns about the towers’ placement in the path of migrating birds. The town boards in Somerset and Yates have passed local laws designed to prevent the project from moving forward. The[...]

Posted 4 years ago

Mar 21

2019

String of violations at Buffalo plant

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 The former American Brass plant on Military Road in North Buffalo keeps getting cited for federal and state environmental and safety violations. The plant, now owned by the German company Aurubis AG, is over a million square feet and home to 650 workers. It produces about 160,000 tons of metal each year for use in cars, batteries, ammunition and zippers.  Last year, state regulators fined the company $35,500 for 15 violations involving the  mishandling of hazardous waste. The violations resulted in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency declaring Aurubis a “significant non-complier” between 2016 and 2018. Three times since 2011,[...]

Posted 4 years ago