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New York must improve procedures for measuring, disclosing data on algal toxins

New York must improve procedures for measuring, disclosing data on algal toxins
The City of Auburn is asking the state Department of Health to address New York’s rapidly spreading toxic algae crisis by adopting stricter standards for sampling, measuring and publicly disclosing levels of toxins in public drinking water. “There are no comprehensive drinking water standards in the state of New York, and there needs to be,” said James Giannettino, an Auburn... more

Auburn City Council picks firm to design landfill-replacing transfer station

Auburn City Council picks firm to design landfill-replacing transfer station
The Auburn City Council Thursday approved the hiring of an Albany engineering firm to design a transfer station as a preemptive move to prepare for the eventual closure of the city-owned landfill. In a unanimous 4-0 vote, with one absence, the council approved the hiring of Barton & Loguidice to provide engineering services for the project, the total cost of... more

Cayuga County CAFO farmers say unity, not blame, needed to protect water

Cayuga County CAFO farmers say unity, not blame, needed to protect water
Jon and Julie Patterson are the sixth generation of their family to work the land at Patterson Farms, an approximately 1,400 cow dairy farm that straddles the border between the towns of Aurelius and Springport. With such a strong family history, the husband-and-wife duo said it’s one of their most important goals to leave behind a healthy farm for their... more

OWLA reveals results of 2017 Owasco Lake tributary sampling

OWLA reveals results of 2017 Owasco Lake tributary sampling
The Owasco Watershed Lake Association released the results of its 2017 Tributary Sampling Results survey, a program designed to identify potential sources of harmful algal bloom-promoting nutrients for mitigation projects. OWLA Board of Directors member Dana Hall, speaking at a meeting of the Owasco Lake Watershed Management Council Tuesday, explained how OWLA took samples from 17 of Owasco Lake’s tributaries... more

Large dairy farms herded through permitting loophole as toxic algae blooms threaten local waters

Large dairy farms herded through permitting loophole as toxic algae blooms threaten local waters
New court-ordered rules designed to control manure runoff from dairy farms into streams and lakes won’t apply to the vast majority of the state’s large industrial farms because roughly 230 of them recently began exploiting a permitting loophole, records show. The towns of Auburn and Owasco have been the first to spotlight the statewide rules-dodging tactic because farming waste has... more

Casella still working to correct landfill violations in Ontario County

Casella still working to correct landfill violations in Ontario County
Casella Waste Services has corrected or is in the process of correcting most of the seven violations it has been cited for at the Ontario County Landfill. Since April 2017, the state Department of Environmental Conservation has issued Casella and the county seven Notices of Violations of its operating permit to run the 389-acre landfill on behalf of the county.... more

Toxins from algae bloom on Canandaigua Lake force drinking ban in Rushville

Toxins from algae bloom on Canandaigua Lake force drinking ban in Rushville
Toxins generated by blue-green algal blooms in Lake Canandaigua have infected the public drinking water in the Village of Rushville, which draws its raw water from the lake about four miles to its west, test samples show. The state Department of Health yesterday urged all customers who rely on the village’s water system and those in the nearby Middlesex Water... more

State relents on controversial Erie Canal tree-cutting plan, for now

State relents on controversial Erie Canal tree-cutting plan, for now
The state agencies behind the controversial clear-cutting of trees along sections of the Erie Canal will not appeal a temporary restraining order that halted the effort, a spokesman for the agencies said Wednesday. Instead, the spokesman for the New York Power Authority and the New York State Canal Corp. said, the agencies will conduct a “comprehensive environmental review of the... more

Water advisory issued for Rushville public water supply

Water advisory issued for Rushville public water supply
Citizens who use the public water supply in the Village of Rushville are being asked to use alternate water sources for drinking, cooking, making ice, making infant formula and preparing food. This comes after levels of blue-green algae above the health advisory level were detected in drinking water. The alert also pertains to citizens in the Middlesex Water District. The... more

Seneca Falls Town Board orders rigorous defense of Local Law 3, standing by 2025 closure of SMI

Seneca Falls Town Board orders rigorous defense of Local Law 3, standing by 2025 closure of SMI
A three-member majority of the Seneca Falls Town Board instructed town attorneys today to immediately begin a rigorous legal defense of Local Law 3, which requires Seneca Meadows Inc. landfill to close by December 2025. The action comes less than a week after the state’s largest waste dump floated a plan to extend its lifetime by 12 years — until... more

Toxins in Auburn raw water at highest level this year, treatment system still working

Toxins in Auburn raw water at highest level this year, treatment system still working
Toxins have again been detected in the raw water supplying the city of Auburn’s water treatment plant at the highest level this season, but the drinking water supply remains safe, according to the Cayuga County Health Department. The department said in a release that results from samples taken Tuesday showed 1.2 micrograms per liter of microcytstins, a toxin associated with... more

DISASTER DECLARED: FEMA gives green light for funding assistance in Seneca Co., Southern Tier

DISASTER DECLARED: FEMA gives green light for funding assistance in Seneca Co., Southern Tier
FEMA took a big step on Tuesday – approving disaster declaration for those impacted by August flooding in Southern Seneca County, and the Southern Tier. Among the seven counties granted relief was Seneca County, where Lodi Point was hit particularly hard. The National Weather Service estimated that as much as 9 inches of rain fell in just hours – prompting... more

Lazzaro says board needs to ’embrace’ new host agreement, but does he have the votes?

Time for change? Documents showcase possible deal between Seneca Falls, Seneca Meadows
Is it time for a new deal in Seneca Falls? Documents outlining a new host agreement between the Town of Seneca Falls and Seneca Meadows Landfill show major changes from the 2007 agreement currently in place. It assumes the passing of a new local law, which would keep Seneca Meadows operating through the end of 2037. It would all be... more

Ticks raising concerns in Cayuga as rare virus is spotted

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A tick-borne virus with origins in Canada has made its way to Cayuga County. Health officials say a case of Powassan virus has been confirmed in the county. It’s the first documented case of the virus in this part of New York State. The Centers for Disease Control says the Powassan virus comes from ticks and can cause inflammation of... more

Save Owasco Now! renewing letter-writing campaign for state assistance with HABs

Save Owasco Now! renewing letter-writing campaign for state assistance with HABs
A local activist group dedicated to combating harmful algal blooms is renewing its campaign asking for state assistance in protecting water quality on Owasco Lake. Urged on by the approaching end of a public comment period on proposed changes to a state permitting process for farms and the continued presence of HABs on the lake, Save Owasco Now! is asking members and... more

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? Neighbor of Seneca Meadows wants to jump-start stalled lawsuit on 2025 landfill closure

CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW? Neighbor of Seneca Meadows wants to jump-start stalled lawsuit on 2025 landfill closure
A frustrated neighbor of the Seneca Meadows Inc. landfill has asked a judge for permission to intervene in a long-delayed civil case challenging a local law that requires the state’s largest trash dump to close by 2025. Dixie D. Lemmon argues that attorneys representing Seneca Meadows, the plaintiffs in the case, and attorneys for the Town of Seneca Falls and... more

Reed learns about water quality on Keuka

Reed learns about water quality on Keuka
Rep. Tom Reed got first hand experience with collecting water samples last week on Keuka Lake when he joined volunteers and representatives from the Finger Lakes Institute who are seeking more data about invasive species. “As the world gets smaller and smallers, we have to be aware of it (how invasives move from one location to another),” said Reed, who... more

Invasive algae cleanup takes shape in Yates

Invasive algae cleanup takes shape in Yates
The recent infestation of the highly invasive macroalgae starry stonewort (Nitellopsis obtusa) in and near Keuka Lake is being addressed by machine harvesting in the Keuka Lake Outlet and marsh at Penn Yan, and by hand harvesting in the mouth of Sugar Creek at Branchport by a group of volunteers from multiple organizations. Organized by the Keuka Lake Association, that... more
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