Environment

Gillibrand calls for federal ban on microbeads

Sep 5, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand announced in Buffalo Friday new federal legislation to ban microbeads in personal care products like facial scrubs and body wash.

Chris Caya/WBFO News

Improvements are on the way for a facility used by researchers who track the health of local waterways.

File photo

New regulations from the State Department of Environmental Conservation are out this week, aimed at protecting natural resources. The regulations identify more than 100 invasive plant and animal species that have the potential to harm New York’s environment and ways to prevent their release.

Local activists are calling on state and federal agencies to help reduce the amount of toxic chemicals pumped into the air in Tonawanda. EPA data shows DuPont's Yerkes Plant, near the intersection of River Road and Sheridan Drive, is a major polluter.

Photo from Wheatfield Against Sludge Facebook page

Wheatfield residents are celebrating a victory in the fight against the use of a liquid fertilizer. WBFO's senior reporter Eileen Buckley reports a ban was recently passed by the Wheatfield Town Board, but residents say they still have an uphill battle.

Smelly 'corpse flower' blooms at Botanical Gardens

Aug 8, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

Morty the Corpse Flower has bloomed. The rare flower that smells like rotting flesh or hot garbage is on display at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens Friday.

erie.gov

Lake Erie water samples tested this week in Albany have come back negative in Erie County for a harmful toxin caused by blue-green algae blooms. 

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Erie County is conducting special water sampling in Lake Erie along the shoreline to look for the toxic algae that shut down the water in Toledo, Ohio over the weekend.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

Congressman Brian Higgins is urging the U.S. Department of Energy to conduct a full Environmental Impact Statement about the risks of transporting nuclear waste over the Peace Bridge.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

A new bike and pedestrian ferry is coming to Canalside in downtown Buffalo. Assemblyman Sean Ryan announced plans for the water taxi on Tuesday.

Photo from Wheatfield Against Sludge Facebook page

Some Wheatfield residents are fighting against the use of a liquid fertilizer they say contains harmful waste. The battle involves a national company operates businesses in Erie and Niagara counties.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

As part of our ongoing If Our Water Could Talk reporting, WBFO's Eileen Buckley spoke with author Edward McClelland. McClelland, who wrote Nothing But Blue Skies about the Great Lakes industrial past of Rust Belt cities like Buffalo, has been keeping a close watch on Buffalo's waterfront renaissance.

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A new report from Ontario paints a gloomy economic picture as a result of continued low water levels in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River. It could cost the U.S. and Canada more than $19 billion by the year 2050.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Boaters are now banned from dumping raw sewage into Lake Erie. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has approved a petition filed by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

PUSH Buffalo released a community-based energy plan Thursday as part of the comment period for Governor Cuomo’s 2014 Draft State Energy Plan.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

After decades of missteps, Buffalo is finally experiencing a renaissance along the waterfront. All this week, WBFO has explored life along the Buffalo River. In our final installment of If Our Water Could Talk, WBFO's Jay Moran and Eileen Buckley explore how the city waterfront is now the catalyst inspiring future economic development being called 'Rust to Blue.'

Report details the harmful effects of microbeads

May 16, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman released a report Thursday detailing the dangers of the plastic beads found in face washes and cosmetic products. The study entitled “Unseen Threat: How Microbeads Harm New York Waters, Wildlife, Health And Environment” suggests there is an urgent need to pass a ban on microbeads.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

All this week, WBFO and WNED-TV are examining Western New York’s water resources in a project called If Our Water Could Talk. While economic development remains an important focus for the Buffalo waterfront, WBFO's Eileen Buckley reports, so is the issue of providing access to our water.


Jay Moran/wbfo news

With its origins in the hills of Wales and Java, the Buffalo River, like most streams, begins in the highlands before flowing downhill into another body of water. Lake Erie serves as the mouth of the Buffalo River, providing the waterway with its unique character.

On a recent, less-than-ideal, Saturday afternoon, some hearty kayakers and fishermen were making full use of the Harlem Road/Buffalo River boat launch site. The scene would not have been imaginable a half-century ago.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

After decades of pollution pouring into our waterways, a massive cleanup effort continues along the Buffalo River. WBFO & WNED-TV are examining our region's water resources in a project called If Our Water Could Talk. A special documentary will air Monday at 9 p.m. on WNED-TV. WBFO's Eileen Buckley begins our series looking back to the industrial age that tainted out most precious resource. 

Mike Desmond/WBFO News

There is yet another invasive species starting to spread across area waterways and the Army Corps of Engineers has an herbicide ready as the plant blossoms in Tonawanda Creek.

city-buffalo.com/Home/City_Departments/BSA

A legal order issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should help improve local water quality. The Buffalo Sewer Authority is planning to reduce sewer and stormwater runoff into the Niagara River and its tributaries.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO News

The continuing issue about polluted air from the Peace Bridge blowing across Buffalo’s West Side was discussed during a national meeting in Washington this week.

Chris Caya/WBFO News

The reconstruction of Niagara Street this year will include green infrastructure to prevent stormwater runoff and improve the quality of the Great Lakes.

Tonawanda Coke faces sentencing for environmental crime

Mar 19, 2014
WBFO News file photo

Tonawanda Coke and its owner will be sentenced in federal court. In the preliminary sentencing report U.S. District Judge William Skretny said victims will not be allowed to seek restitution during Wednesday’s sentencing.

West Seneca residents prepare for potential floods

Mar 14, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO News

West Seneca homeowners are preparing for possible ice jam flooding on Buffalo Creek as temperatures warm up Friday. Residents in the Lexington Green neighborhood have already experienced multiple major thaws this season and are hoping the worst of it is behind them.

Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO News

Sixty local businesses are calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to support renewable energy. During an event hosted by the Sierra Club Niagara Group Thursday, business owners and concerned citizens touched on the benefits of wind energy.

storyofstuff.org

Environmental activist Annie Leonard, who created the popular animated documentary "The Story of Stuff," brings her message of sustainability to Buffalo Tuesday night. 

Public invited to attend Tonawanda Coke update meeting

Mar 3, 2014
Ashley Hirtzel / WBFO News

The public is invited to attend a meeting regarding issues surrounding Tonawanda Coke Monday night. The event will take place at the Sheridan Parkside Community Center located at 169 Sheridan Parkside Drive in Tonawanda at 6:30 p.m.

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