It’s been almost a year since a black smelly discharge covered the U.S. side of Niagara Falls, spreading across the Niagara River.
The issue was caused by human error at the Niagara Falls Waste Water Treatment Plant. It was a result of a routine, necessary and short term change in the waste water treatment process.
Since then, Niagara Falls Water Board has made changes to its system. Today the board invited the media inside its treatment plant to see first hand. After working with the DEC and consultants the board has found short term solutions to prevent another discharge.
Employees are receiving more training, additional employees have been hired and the board has invested in new equipment and more treatment chemicals.
“We are bringing the water in from all over the city. We are changing pumps. We do a lot of things out there that no one can see,” Chair of NFWB, Dan O’Callaghan said.
These updates now allow Niagara Falls to take in more water during heavy rains. The progress doesn’t stop there. NFWB plans to invest between $22,000,000 and $42,000,000 worth of upgrades to the water system within the next two years.
“We have to put the series of protocols in place to ensure that an incident like last year’s discharge does not occur again,” NFWB Member, Nicholas Forster said.
Members also discussed with the media that the culture has changed at the water board for the better. Board members say they are constantly working to secure state and federal money to update the gaining water infrastructure.