Today Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper released its report on the area’s water health(State of Our Water).
Western New York scored good to fair in seven out of nine categories including Drinking water and economic activity. When it comes to toxic contamination and water infrastructure, our water scores poorly, because of aging water systems. Also, opioids users are flushing pills down the toilet and the current water waste systems aren't designed to treat that kind of waste.
“These sewer systems are designed to overflow into our waterways and we need to accelerate and prioritize infrastructure. That means going to Albany and working with our federal partners to direct the resources here in Western New York,” said Jill Jedlicka, Executive of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper.
The nonprofit organization plans to keep tackling this issue. D’Youville College is also collaborating with this organization to to help find solutions to issues impacting our water ways.
Representatives for the Waterkeeper say a big part of the solution is tapping into a $2.5 billion pool of funding that state lawmakers allocated earlier this year for clean water programs.
Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper has even changed its name from Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper.
“Our new name reflects the scope of our work,” Jedlicka said.