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Local community group asking residents to help investigate potential soil mess in town of Tonawanda

Posted at 2:33 AM, Jul 23, 2019

TOWN OF TONAWANDA, N.Y. (WKBW) — Looking to help fix potential environmental issues in your community? That's exactly what one group is looking to accomplish in the town of Tonawanda.

The Citizen Science Community Resources, Inc. (CSCR) is asking for local residents to help find out what is in the soil, and if it is a health risk to the community.

"This is a pilot study so we will be also looking for feedback on how we can improve our procedures and our toolkit," says Jackie James, the founder of CSCR, "we will be working closely with a few local high school teachers to develop a curriculum. When we secure funding for the larger study, students will be involved too."

The aim is for CSCR to train residents how to take samples of the soil around the area of the old Tonawanda Coke site in the areas of Eastern Grand Island and Holmes Elementary School, to figure out if the soil is at risk to the public, using protocol created by the Environmental Protection Agency.

CSCR through the help of Erie County Legislator Kevin Hardwick (D-District 4), received a $5,000 grant in order to conduct the study.

As far as why people in the town of Tonawanda would be interested, CSCR board member Jenn Pusatier says, "why wouldn't people want to know what's in their garden or if their children are safe from the mess TCC left behind? This is a chance where folks can find out and we're going to help!"

If you're interested in helping CSCR is holding two open houses at its offices at 3200 Elmwood Ave. Room 210, in Kenmore:

  • Thursday, July 25th from 4:30-6:30 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 30th from 1:00-5:00 p.m.

Looking for more information? You can contact CSCR at (716) 873-6191, or email CSCR at