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The underground groundwater contamination under the former Chevy plant on East Delavan Avenue has become another example of the problems of Buffalo's mixed sewer system, mixing sewage and stormwater and overflowing if there is heavy rain or snowmelt.

Without changes to a combined sewer system like Buffalo's, the water from snow melt or a heavy rain will overload the system and continue to send a mix of sewage and stormwater overflow into area waterways. The Buffalo Sewer Authority is spending hundreds of millions of dollars to correct the situation.

Mike Desmond / WBFO News

It's a new world, with predictive analytics and artificial intelligence at work helping run Buffalo's sewer system. More and more of the system is being called "smart sewers."

The Buffalo Sewer Authority is planning a major expansion of its Bird Island treatment plant, as the agency works to treat every drop of contaminated wastewater it can.

Erie County

Erie County is doing some significant planning on its sewer system, aided by hard computer data showing where the system is doing well and where work is needed.

Buffalo Water Authority

With Erie County's sewage treatment facilities aging and sometimes overloading, the county is preparing for another round of improvements and renovations to the wastewater infrastructure.

WBFO's Michael Mroziak

Buffalonians could worry less about sewer pipe overflows if storm water never gets into the sewer system. The city is spending millions on green infrastructure to do exactly that.

The air along Scajaquada Creek, and some park lakes in Buffalo, should be easier to breathe soon. A restoration project is underway that should help eliminate odor and other problems along the waterway. 

File Photo / National Public Radio

Our forbears expected Buffalo to be a great and giant city - and built for it. That base is serving to provide sewer service to accommodate current development projects.

Mike Desmond/wbfo news

Another phase of the long effort to turn Scajaquada Creek back into a clean waterway from the eastern end of Erie County to the Niagara River is getting near.

Mike Desmond/wbfo news

Improvements are coming to a section of Buffalo's Schiller Park, courtesy of a $298,000 allocation from the Common Council.

New York state funding has been awarded to help clean up Scajaquada Creek. The Buffalo Sewer Authority will be receiving $1.815 million to restore a section of the creek, its floodplain and its wetlands.


Area shorelines received a facelift as volunteers descended upon 40 area sites for the 30th annual Great Lakes Beach Sweep.

Ontario's Niagara Region is joining an array of governments on both sides of the border trying to ease overloaded sewer systems from overflowing into waterways and into the Great Lakes.

WBFO News file photo

The Buffalo Sewer Authority's long-term plan to end overflows from the sewer system when there is heavy precipitation is moving ahead.


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.

Angered by J.P. Morgan Chase's local mortgage issues and the bank’s recent revelation it lost billions of dollars in the money markets, Buffalo has shifted $45 million out of the bank.

City Comptroller Mark Schroeder says he is shifting the money to First Niagara Bank and receiving a slightly higher interest rate on the Buffalo Sewer Authority cash.

He says the money being moved represents around eight or nine-percent of the cash held by Chase for a wide array of City Hall agencies at a time when a lot of cash is held for authority capital projects.

    State Senator Mark Grisanti is introducing legislation Saturday that would require prompt public alerts to sewage spills that enter local waterways. 

The "Sewage Pollution Right to Know Act" would be an amendment to the environmental conservation law, requiring sewage treatment plants to notify the public within twenty-four hours of a raw sewage overflow. Grisanti claims that these overflows leach dangerous bacteria, toxins, pathogens and chemicals into recreational and commercial waters and the public has a right to know about them.

The Buffalo Sewer Authority has been dumping billions of gallons of sewage and wastewater into the Niagara River and its tributaries for years. The Environmental Protection Agency says that has to end. So, to that end, EPA regional spokesman

Mike Basile says the Sewer Authority is being ordered to comply with federal Clean Water Act requirements for combined sewer systems.