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For Release: Tuesday, August 9, 2022

DEC and Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper to Hold Virtual Outreach on Aug. 18 for Buffalo River AOC

Organizations will Provide a Progress Update and Invite Public Comments on the Continuing Restoration of the Buffalo River Area of Concern

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper will hold a virtual outreach event from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 18, 2022, to update the public about ongoing efforts to restore natural resources in the Buffalo River Area of Concern (AOC) and the proposed removal of the 'Restrictions on Dredging Activities Beneficial Use Impairment' (BUI).

Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, in partnership with Erie County and DEC, coordinates these restoration efforts under the Buffalo River AOC Remedial Action Plan (RAP).

The Buffalo River AOC is located in the City of Buffalo, Erie County, and includes the historically industrialized portion of the river beginning at its mouth (where it outlets to Lake Erie), and continuing upstream approximately six miles to the Bailey Avenue bridge. The Restrictions on Dredging Activities BUI was originally designated as impaired in the 1980s due to elevated concentrations of multiple chemical contaminants in river sediments. Extensive remediation of contaminated river sediments and contaminant source areas along the river shoreline since that time, as well as subsequent contaminant monitoring, demonstrates that the criteria established to remove the Restrictions on Dredging Activities BUI has been achieved.

A draft report, which details the completed actions and assessments supporting the BUI removal, is available for public review at Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper's website (leaves DEC website). Public comments on the draft report and proposed BUI removal may be made at the Aug. 18 virtual event and are also being accepted at Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper's online portal (leaves DEC website) on its website through Sept. 8, 2022.

To participate in the virtual event online, go to Zoom (leaves DEC website).

Meeting ID: 875 6479 3714 Passcode: 898568

To join by telephone dial 1-646-558-8656 and enter the Meeting ID and Passcode.

For more information on the Buffalo River Area of Concern, visit the Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper (leaves DEC website) and U.S. EPA (leaves DEC website) websites.

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