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Buffalo

Ricardo Rivera could appreciate the wonder of it all. He sat last week, feet dangling, on an outlook by the turret of the Emerald Channel intake. A few people in a passing motorboat idled the engine and looked up in astonishment at Rivera, atop one of Buffalo’s most visible yet least-accessible landmarks. The round brick-and-stone structure is surrounded by water, at a …

Environment

Chuck Bockhahn is just the kind of farmer that solar power developers love to meet. "The dairy industry is driving me broke," said the 55-year-old Sardinia farmer, who sold his last cow last month. Bockhahn, who once had a milking herd of 73 cows, now leases 200 to 300 acres of his land to a San Diego company planning the largest solar farm in New York State. EDF …

Buffalo

The waterfalls are a given. But there's a lot more for the 8 million tourists at Niagara Falls State Park to appreciate along the Niagara River corridor. That's why government and tourism officials sounded so excited about an international designation bestowed upon the Niagara River corridor Thursday, when it became just the 40th Ramsar site in the United States. It'…

Environment

The Niagara River, long appreciated on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border, will soon receive global recognition as an environmental treasure. Next week, the U.S. side of the river will be designated a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention, an intergovernmental treaty for protection of exemplary wetland systems around the world. The Niagara …

Environment

Gazing at Cayuga Creek in Lancaster, Jill Jedlicka sees a tributary that could return pollution to the Buffalo River – all because the Trump administration recently decided to roll back regulations aimed at protecting the nation's smaller waterways. "It's a systematic, disassembling of the tools and the resources and the laws that are on the books to help us protect our…

Crime

Developer Jon M. Williams is the new owner of the former Tonawanda Coke site. A public auction of the 140-acre riverfront parcel was canceled Monday for lack of interest, and a federal bankruptcy judge followed suit by approving Williams' purchase of the contaminated plant. Williams, who had a sales agreement to buy the property before the auction, wants to redevelop…

Buffalo

A grassroots community coalition is calling for the expansion of state parklands to encompass most of Buffalo's Outer Harbor. Our Outer Harbor Coalition, representing over a dozen organizations, scheduled a press conference for Monday morning to release its report detailing the coalition's reasons for supporting parkland expansion. The report is titled "Buffalo's Outer …

Environment

The 16-year road to a decision about expanding a hazardous waste landfill in Niagara County continues to include several issues that have kept the proposal on ice. CWM Chemical Services sought permission in 2003 to dig a 43.5-acre landfill in Porter with enough capacity for about 6 million tons of waste, CWM spokeswoman Lori Caso said. The idea was to add space near …

Environment

About 350 climate change activists took part in demonstration Friday in Niagara Square – mirrored by millions around the world, in a global effort to demand that governments and businesses take action on climate change. Organized mostly by young students – many who skipped classes to attend the rallies – Buffalo's march included a fair share of older demonstrators who c…

Environment

The international board that manages outflows from Lake Ontario said Friday that despite recent reductions, the amount of water flowing past the dam at Massena is the highest ever for this month. From June 13 to Aug. 21, the International Lake Ontario-St. Lawrence River Board of Control allowed almost 2.75 million gallons of water to leave the lake every second. Since t…

Environment

There is no formal proposal to install wind turbines in Lake Erie waters off Western New York. But nearly 100 people showed up at an Erie County Legislature meeting on Thursday anticipating or fearing that day is coming soon. Clean energy advocates pressed legislators to be open-minded about wind energy use. Though there are currently no freshwater wind farms in the Uni…

Business

As National Fuel and the state Department of Environmental Conservation continue their legal battles over a pipeline that would carry natural gas from Pennsylvania through Western New York, residents in the affected areas still are playing a role in opposing the project. "We've still got this hanging over us. It's been five years," said Paula Hargreaves of Pendleton, as…

Environment

WASHINGTON – Fearing that the ever-larger algal blooms in Lake Erie will one day creep eastward toward Buffalo, Rep. Brian Higgins on Monday asked the Army Corps of Engineers to combat the mucky green menace in the Great Lakes by expanding a successful experimental program first tried in Florida. In a letter to R.D. James, assistant secretary of the Army for civil works…

Environment

It’s true we are using less coal in the United States. Coal is more expensive for power generation than natural gas, and that's a primary market driver in our domestic downturn of using coal as an industrial fuel. The side benefit to that downturn is less carbon emission from our power plants, since natural gas — while still a fossil fuel — only emits about 40% of the c…