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DEC initiates landfill testing in Wheatfield

Wed, Mar 22nd 2017 06:35 pm

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced Tuesday it will begin "a detailed environmental study" at the former Niagara Sanitation Landfill site on Nash Road in Wheatfield.

The DEC stated in a release it "will perform the investigation which will include the installation of monitoring wells and test pits to assess conditions on the site, and determine if any contaminants may be moving off-site into the residential neighborhood."

This study comes after several notices of claim were made to the Town of Wheatfield by residents of Forbes Street in North Tonawanda and the nearby area. Some of these residents had their properties tested through soil sampling last year, and the results indicated the presence of hazardous chemicals, including Love Canal waste elements.

These residents are claiming these chemicals seeped from the Niagara Sanitation Landfill to their properties, causing them to have health issues.

In its release, the DEC stated the purpose of its investigation is to "define the nature and extent of contamination in soil, surface water, groundwater and any other parts of the environment that may be affected. The site investigation will fully characterize all contamination at the site."

The former municipal and industrial landfill housed waste from several sites, including the Niagara Falls Air Force Base, Bell Aerospace, Carborundum, Frontier Chemical, Graphite Specialties, Continental Can and Grief Brothers.

Some of the harmful contaminants the DEC will look for include barium, lead, municipal waste, arsenic, mercury and several others.

Last month, Wheatfield Town Board members agreed to designate nearly $80,000 of appropriated fund balance toward installing a fence around the landfill. New York State Sen. Robert G. Ortt also secured $75,000 in grant funding for the fence last year. The total cost of the fence has been estimated at $151,976.

For the DEC's full statement on the site, as well as plans for its study, visit http://wheatfield.ny.us/DocumentCenter/View/1516.


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