Genesee River - Rochester, NY area
Consider the environmental importance of the Genesee River, which runs through the city of Rochester, NY
Various recreational uses, aquatic life support and aesthetics in urban waterways of the Lower Genesee River are significantly restricted by pollutants from various industrial, municipal, commercial and other sources in the highly-urbanized metropolitan Rochester area and surrounding suburban communities. Nonpoint urban runoff flushes a variety of pollutants and debris into the river. Contaminated sediments, inactive hazardous waste sites and other impacts attributed to past/historic discharges also limit uses. (Page 5, The 2001 Genesee River Basin Waterbody Inventory and Priority Waterbodies List, Bureau of Watershed Assessment and Research, Division of Water, NYS Department of Environmental Conservation
The Genesee River near Lower Falls. Photo by Frank J. Regan.
The Genesee River, which runs through the city of Rochester and dissects there with the Erie Canal, also has its unique ecology and a history of contamination from industry and agricultural run-off.
There are many environmental issues relating to this river that people still use to canoe, boat, swim on. It even harbors large vessels as the Genesee River meets Lake Ontario.
Cleaning up the Genesee from centuries of use as a transportation route and drainage for industry should be instrumental before developers begin yet another millennia of use, this time for tourism.
Get the news links and all the resources for this topic.(Above scripts from Dynamic Drive)
Rochester area discussions on the environmental health of our major river.
- 6/28/2014 - Major waterways in New York State, including lower Genesee River, heavily polluted by industrial toxic waste. Let’s face it; we’ve got more problems with our water quality in our region than raw sewage from sporadic sewer overflows. Why isn’t the local media addressing this issue? Read “Wasting our Waterways. TOXIC INDUSTRIAL POLLUTION AND RESTORING THE PROMISE OF THE CLEAN WATER ACT” Released by: Environment New York Research and Policy Center” Toxic Chemicals Found in New York Waterways New York, NY—Industrial facilities dumped 5,303,190 pounds of toxic chemicals into New York’s waterways in 2012 making New York’s waterways the 15th worst in the nation, according to a new report by Environment New York Research & Policy Center. The “Wasting Our Waters” report comes as the Environmental Protection Agency considers a new rule to restore Clean Water Act protections to thousands of waterways in New York and across the nation. "New York's waterways should be clean -- for swimming, drinking, and supporting wildlife," said Heather Leibowitz, the Director of Environment New York. "But too often, our waters have become a dumping ground for polluters. The first step to curb this tide of toxic pollution is to restore Clean Water Act protections to all our waterways." Environment New York Research & Policy Center’s report on toxic pollutants discharged into America’s waters is based on data reported by polluting facilities to the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory for 2012, the most recent data available. (June 19, 2014) Environment New York [more on Water Quality and Genesee River in our area]
- Water quality concerns for Rochester, NY’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Program The due date for public comment for Rochester, NY’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Program (LWRP) comes to an end this December. You can complete a survey and/or submit a comment online here: Rochester LWRP Update. The description of the program is as follows from the City of Rochester: “The purpose of this project is to update the city’s LWRP and expand the boundary of the plan to include all of the city’s waterfront areas along Lake Ontario, the Genesee River and the Erie Canal.” The ten questions on the survey mostly contain a wish-list of projects to make life more appealing to those who visit, live, or want to develop along our city’s waterfronts. Stuff like creating a skate park, more fishing sites, more bars and restaurants, more residential homes, and more trails figure large. And then there is a project peculiar to our city, and I suspect wildly expensive, the ‘re-watering the old Erie Canal through downtown’. There’s also the Garden Ariel loop project that would “Through stewardship, innovative design, and community outreach to preserve natural and historic resources, and cultivate High Falls transformation into a world-class public green space.” [December 2013] more...
- 3/21/2012 - Hope for the Genesee River: The Genesee Rivers has been given some negative news lately, as it has been named the 32nd worst toxic polluted river in the US according to this report: Wasting Our Waterways 2012 Toxic Industrial Pollution and the Unfulfilled Promise of the Clean Water Act Released by: Environment America Research and Policy Center Release date: Thursday, March 22, 2012 > Read News Release > Download Report (PDF). Read more about that here and a host of articles on this story: Not news: Genesee River (which runs through Rochester, NY) ranked 32nd most polluted river in the US. However, all may not be lost to recover the environmental health of our river, check out this photo essay” Improving Conservation Strategy for the Neglected Upper Genesee River” by Genesee River Wilds www.geneseeriverwilds.org
- 3/26/2012 - Not news: Genesee River (which runs through Rochester, NY) ranked 32nd most polluted river in the US. Back in 1998, when I first began RochesterEnvironment.com to collect and access all the environmental issues surrounding one community—Rochester, NY—I created a page called Genesee River. I created it because some major articles and reports had just come out that the river that runs through Rochester, NY was very toxic and polluted. Here is an entry I posted on my web page back in the day (though none of the links work anymore): more...
Learn about Center for Environmental Initiatives’s ‘Genesee RiverWatch Initiative’, a major effort to clean up our waters of the Genesee River, its tributaries and Lake Ontario. Rochester is considering many water-front development projects [Read: Water quality concerns for Rochester, NY’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Program] but to make these project viable the waters that run through them must be clean and healthy.
The challenge "The Rochester Embayment of Lake Ontario is a federally designated Area of Concern because of a range of concerns including pollution, contaminated sediments, fish consumption advisories and impairment of beneficial use such as beach closings. Many area tributaries to Lake Ontario and the Genesee River do not meet state water quality standards. The beaches of Lake Ontario are closed typically for 30 to 50% of the bathing season because of high bacteria levels and contamination with algae. Development of our lakeshore assets, including the Port of Rochester, is dependent upon a sustained improvement in the near-shore water quality. The challenge to the community is how to reduce contamination of the Lake Ontario and Finger Lakes watersheds from agricultural activities, municipal and industrial wastewater discharges, urban stormwater runoff, and septic systems in a cost-effective manner. Improving the water quality in the region's waters will make a vital contribution to improving the quality of life in the area and to the economic and environmental revitalization of the region's lakeshore assets. " -from Center for Environmental Initiatives (www.ceinfo.org)
- Is the Genesee River healthy? Back in the 1990’s this story appeared about our Genesee River: “Genesee River ranks "second among U.S. rivers that had cancer-causing chemicals dumped into them during a recent five-year period"--Rochester Digital Edition” What interesting is that in the subsequent years, no investigative reporting that I know of has done on an in-depth report on the health of the Genesee River? Rarely is there even an article in any local news about the Genesee River. So, what does it mean that the Genesee River does not appear the ‘worst’ rivers list in American Rivers (www.americanrivers.org)? It does not mean that American Rivers or any other environmental group has come to the Genesee River and conducted a full environmental study. What it does mean that no one has conducted a thorough environmental study on the Genesee River and sent that in to American Rivers. My point: The Genesee River could be very polluted, maybe one of the most ‘toxic’ polluted rivers in the US. Who, without doing a compressive study, would know? The Genesee River was used as a chemical toilet for decades and few I suspect are drinking the water near our (the Rochester region) end of the river. Without a full testing of all our rivers, we cannot possibly believe that the Genesee River does not belong on anyone’s worst or most polluted list. One New York river lands on American Rivers Most Endangered List | 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River is not on the American Rivers list of America’s Most Endangered Rivers list, which was released early this morning. But the river that tops the list, the Susquehanna River, stretches into New York. (May 17, 2011) 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- 12/06/2010 - The Genesee River, how often do we check its health? Just came across this good article on the state of the Genesee River’s health—from July of 2009. It was a good find. Most articles these days on the Genesee River are about how to develop it and make it attractive. However, the actual health of our main river should be our focus not merely on its aesthetics. Our river, like most bodies of water in our area (and most other areas in our country) has been the end point of drainage systems for industry, farm run-off, and more. We should not just assume that the rivers can recover from these assaults naturally, as the stuff often dumped into them was manmade and nothing the rivers ever had to deal with them before. So, our attention should be constantly on the health of our Genesee River, not just for tourist dollars and floating our boats, but because life lives in rivers and is a part of our region’s ecology. River's water slowly reviving | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River flows through a dramatic progression of settings on its 160-mile course — forested hills, plains rich with farms, small villages, a large city, and deep gorges featuring spectacular waterfalls and a huge flood-control dam. (July 19, 2009) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York
- Genesee River – gauging success Using the Genesee River as a backdrop, New York State Environmental Conservation Commissioner (NYSDEC) Pete Grannis recently celebrated the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. Grannis listed many of the accomplishment of the Genesee River clean up (see State Environmental Commissioner Celebrates Progress along the Genesee River - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation): more...
- Care about the Genesee River ? The Genesee River Wilds Project is a coalition of groups and individuals who invest time, energy, funding, and other resources in the development of an environmentally sustainable system of natural parks concentrated along the Genesee River in the “Genesee River Wilds more...
- News on the Genesee River at Rochester, NY What is becoming clear with this article [There's something fishy in the Genesee - again]and several others, Rochester City Newspaper is now the most important environmental newspaper in our area. Every other media in our area has dropped the ball on the most important issue of the day—the state of our environment. more...
Toxic Industrial Pollution and the Unfulfilled Promise of the Clean Water Act Released by: Environment America Research and Policy Center
"Industrial facilities continue to dump millions of pounds of toxic chemicals into America’s rivers, streams, lakes and ocean waters each year – threatening both the environment and human health. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), pollution from industrial facilities is responsible for threatening or fouling water quality in more than 14,000 miles of rivers and more than 220,000 acres of lakes, ponds and estuaries nationwide. " from Environment America
Environment America"Environment America is a federation of state-based, citizen-funded environmental advocacy organizations. We believe there’s something special about our country — and so much worth protecting and preserving for future generations. From stunning waterways like Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes, to beloved national parks like Acadia and Mount Rainier, America’s natural wonders enrich our lives in countless ways. "
* Also: Improving Conservation Strategy for the Neglected Upper Genesee River” by Genesee River Wilds www.geneseeriverwilds.org
Though our major river through Rochester doesn't get much media attention, sometimes it does. I've been following these stories for ten years and this is all I have on the Genesee River.
- Kodak number one for releasing most toxic chemicals in New York waterways, study finds According to a June report from Environment New York Research & Policy Center, Eastman Kodak Co. has been named the top discharging facility in 2012, weighted by toxicity concentration, in all of New York State, putting 12,151 pounds of toxic pollution into the Lower Genesee River. In addition, the report found, in 2012, industrial facilities discharged over 5.3 million pounds of toxic chemicals into New York's waterways overall, and Anheuser-Busch Inc. facilities dropped over 1.3 million pounds of toxic waste into the Oswego River in Baldwinsville, N.Y. (July 9, 2014) Minority Reporter [more on Brownfields and Genesee River and Water Quality in our area]
- DEC Announces That Remediation Activities at Eastman Business Park Will Continue Following Kodak's Bankruptcy Settlement Environmental Trust Established For Cleanup and Monitoring Efforts at the Business Park and Investigation of Genesee River As part of the federal court approval of Kodak's bankruptcy settlement today, the company will create an environmental trust to fund remediation and monitoring activities at the Eastman Business Park (EBP) in Rochester and an investigation to assess whether the Genesee River suffered damages associated with discharges from Kodak's operations, State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Commissioner Joe Martens announced. DEC will administer the trust, which is funded by Kodak. "The assessment and mitigation of environmental damage affecting Eastman Business Park and the Genesee River is an important component of Kodak's bankruptcy settlement agreement," Commissioner Martens said. "Governor Andrew Cuomo directed DEC to develop a plan to address environmental issues at the site, which will help to attract prospective developers. The environmental trust fund will ensure the continued cleanup and monitoring of contamination at the business park and provide funding to investigate impacts to the Genesee River. These actions will create a healthier environment to attract economic development and jobs." (May 13, 2014) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) [more on Genesee River and Brownfields in our area]
- Kodak Will Create A Trust To Oversee Environmental Work At Eastman Business Park A federal bankruptcy judge on Tuesday gave final approval to a plan that will see Kodak create an environmental trust to fund environmental work at Eastman Business Park. The agreement also calls for an investigation to assess whether the Genesee River suffered damages associated with discharges from past Kodak operations. (May 13, 2014) WXXI News [more on Brownfields and Genesee River in our area]
- Mass Meditation Means to Bring Attention to Pollution in the Genesee River Dozens sat in silent midday meditation Tuesday on the Pont de Rennes footbridge in the heart of downtown Rochester. Meditation was meant to call attention to pollution in the Genesee River without speaking a word. The “Earth Day Earth Vigil” was organized as collaboration between The Lost Bird Project and Rochester Zen Center. Executive Producer of the Lost Bird Project, Andy Stern says not many people know the state of the Genesee River. “In the past, there have been a tremendous amount of toxins dumped into the river. This was largely when there were no regulations at all,” said Stern. “They still remain; many are embedded in the bottom of the river. There's controversy about whether to clean or not, maybe we'll just stir it up and make it worse.” (April 23, 2014) WXXI News [more on Genesee River in our area]
- Upstate communities tackle pollution in the Genesee River Community members from across western New York came together in Rochester Thursday to address the issue of pollution in the Genesee River, and create an action plan for the immediate future. The summit, run by the Center for Environmental Initiatives, was spurred by a new study which suggests human activity along the Genesee River Basin is having a direct impact on the water quality in Lake Ontario. Lead author of the research, Joe Makarewicz from the College at Brockport, is urging communities to tackle the issue at a local level. He says reducing run off from agricultural activities and wastewater treatment plants would go a long way toward improving water quality (February 6, 2014) Innovation Trail [more on Genesee River in our area]
- Rochester Hosts Summit to Tackle Pollution in Genesee River Community members from across western New York came together in Rochester Thursday to address the issue of pollution in the Genesee River, and create an action plan for the immediate future. The summit, run by the Center for Environmental Initiatives, was spurred by a new study which suggests human activity along the Genesee River Basin is having a direct impact on the water quality in Lake Ontario. Lead author of the research, Joe Makarewicz from the College at Brockport, is urging communities to tackle the issue at a local level. (February 6, 2014) WXXI News [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Study IDs Genesee River pollutants An unusually precise research study has, for the first time, determined the sources of pollutants in the Genesee River — and a Rochester-area organization is convening an open workshop Thursday for people who want to do something about it. The Genesee River Watershed Project, undertaken by environmental scientists from The College at Brockport, used sophisticated computer models to track phosphorus, sediment and other material in the river and its tributaries. The massive study — 755 pages have been published so far, with one part yet to come — is a road map for change that lays out the relative benefits of reducing farm field runoff in one spot or cleaning up sewage treatment plant discharge in another. "It allows you an opportunity from a management perspective to say 'We can develop a plan for the future. Here's where we can get more bang for the buck'," said Joseph C. Makarewicz, a distinguished professor of environmental science at the college and the study's lead author. (February 4, 2014) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on the Genesee River in our area]
* Two page Fact Sheet: The National Rivers and Streams Assessment 2008-2009: A Collaborative Survey "he National Rivers and Streams Assessment (NRSA) is a study of all rivers and streams of the U.S., from the largest “great rivers” to the smallest headwater streams. It was conducted using standard statistical survey techniques: sites were selected at random to represent the condition of all rivers and streams in regions that share similar characteristics. This is the first time a national monitoring study of the overall condition of streams and rivers has been conducted using this statistically-valid approach. State and tribal water quality agencies, with support from EPA, conducted this work using the same methods at all sites to ensure that results can be compared across the country " EPA National Rivers and Streams Assessment
- Rochester's Lower Falls an angler's paradise Beyond the mist of Lower Falls, at the base of the Genesee River gorge, Ryan Lawrence casts his line into the swift-flowing waters from the edge of the rocky shore. The late fall morning has drawn a dozen other fisherman. Some push closer to the thundering waterfall, and venture into the eddy, while others stake out locations downstream. There, the river is so calm and shallow it is possible to wade well into the channel. On either side, the wooded ravine is a spray of bright fall colors that reflects in the Genesee. The picturesque fishing hole is framed beneath arched supports of the Driving Park bridge some 200 feet above. "I love it in the fall time," says Lawrence, 22, of Penfield, who fishes these waters three times a week this time of year in the hopes of hooking steelhead trout. "A lot of fish come up here. It's a big river. ... (But) you're in the middle of the city. I'm sure not a lot of people even know about it." (November 16, 2013) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on Genesee River in our area]
- Lake Sturgeon Released into the Genesee River New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) staff and federal and local partners today released 1,000 fingerling lake sturgeon into the Genesee River as part of an effort to restore a healthy population of this native fish species. This event marks the third year a release has taken place. The addition of these young fish to the Genesee River will increase the chance that the river will once again be the home to a re-established and thriving Lake Sturgeon population. "This project clearly demonstrates how great partnerships and good science together have contributed to the success of lake sturgeon restoration efforts," said Paul D'Amato, DEC Region 8 Regional Director. "This species of fish nearly disappeared from these waters, but thanks to the combined efforts of dedicated experts, lake sturgeon in the Genesee Rive now have a great chance to return to a healthy, thriving, self-sustaining population." Regional Director D'Amato noted the commitment and hard work of partners in this effort, including research ecologist Dr. Dawn Dittman of the USGS Great Lakes Science Center; Scott Schlueter, Fish and Wildlife Biologist of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; Dr. Jeff Wyatt, Director of Animal Health and Conservation for the Seneca Park Zoo; and DEC staff. (October 3, 2013) The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) [more on Wildlife and the Genesee River in our area]
- More good news for sturgeon Approximately 10 years ago, federal, state, and university scientists took a gamble and reintroduced lake sturgeon into the Genesee River. They believed that the river's water quality and pollution levels had improved enough that the fish could survive, grow, and ultimately reproduce. And so far, they've been right. The fish are growing at good rates, fueled in part by diets of high-fat fly larvae and zebra mussels from the river bottom, says Jeff Wyatt, a University of Rochester professor and chief veterinarian for the Seneca Park Zoo. "It's all good news: that's the bottom line," Wyatt says. Wyatt and other researchers are also taking blood samples from the fish and testing them for heavy metals, pesticides, and PCBs. They're comparing them to samples from sturgeon in the unpolluted Oswegatchie River in the northern part of the state. (August 21, 2013) Rochester City Newspaper [more on Genesee River and Wildlife in our area]
- Forum addresses health of Lake Ontario, Genesee River Experts say there's good and bad news Environmental experts spoke about the health of Lake Ontario, the Genesee River and the area’s huge surrounding watersheds Thursday during a 2013 Lake Ontario Ecosystem Forum at the Port of Rochester. They shared both good and bad news. Lake Ontario, the smallest of the five Great Lakes, is certainly in some environmental trouble. But the Genesee River, while still not recommended for swimming or fishing in, is showing signs of returning to health. Don Zelazny, Great Lakes program coordinator for the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Jeff Wyatt of the University of Rochester and the Seneca Park Zoo presented these different ecological aspects of the waterways. (August 16, 2013) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on Great Lakes and Genesee River in our area]
- Erica Bryant: Three-foot sturgeon found in Genesee Earlier this week, I called Jeff Wyatt to check up on local lake sturgeon, an endangered bottom-feeding species of fish with an uneven tail, long torpedo shape and bony back and side plates. I did not expect him to be at the 7th International Symposium on Sturgeon, because I did not realize there was a global gathering devoted to the well-being of these fish. As it turns out, hundreds of sturgeon supporters — including scientists, politicians, farmers and technologists from more than 35 countries — converged on Nanaimo, British Columbia, this week, all in the name of restoring the species. (July 26, 2013) Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on Genesee River and Wildlife in our area]
- Genesee River to power upstate homes once more After five years of renovations to the Rochester Gas and Electric (RG&E) hydro-power station, the Genesee River will once again be used to power homes in upstate New York. RG&E announced that a two-thousand-foot long power tunnel system under the river will resume producing hydroelectricity today, with the first of three power turbines being switched on. (December 19, 2012) Innovation Trail [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Our Little Muddy makes the list | 520 – An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River ranked 32 among American rivers in total toxic discharges in 2010, according to a released today by Environment New York. The Seneca River, which flows eastward from the foot of Seneca Lake, was 33. A quick-and-dirty check of U.S. Environmental Protection Agency data showed that about 97 percent of the 1,393,996 pounds of discharges were nitrate compounds from Eastman Kodak Co. The rest, or nearly all the rest, were nitrate compounds from Friendship Dairy in Allegany County. Nitrates’ worst offense is feeding algal growth and contributing to degradation of water quality, according to the report. (March 23, 2012) 520 – An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Genesee River named one of the nation's dirtiest | www.WHEC.com An environmental group says the Genesee River is one of the most toxic rivers in the country. "Environment New York" ranked the Genesee the 32nd dirtiest river in the country, saying it contains far too many toxic chemicals. (March 23, 2012) Rochester, NY News | www.WHEC.com [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- America’s Waterways received 226 Million Pounds of Toxic Chemicals | Environment America Washington, D.C.–Five states—Indiana, Virginia, Nebraska, Texas, and Georgia—account for forty percent of the total amountof toxic discharges to U.S. waterways in 2010, according to a new report released today by Environment America. Wasting Our Waterways: Industrial Toxic Pollution and the Unfulfilled Promise of the Clean Water Act also reports that 226 million pounds oftoxic chemicals were discharged into 1,400 waterways across the country. “America’s waterways are a polluter’s paradise right now. Polluters dumped226million pounds of toxic chemicals into our lakes, rivers and streams in 2010,” said Shelley Vinyard, Clean Water Advocate with Environment America. “We must turn the tide of toxic pollution by restoring Clean Water Act protections to our waterways.” (March 22, 2012) Environment America [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Clear water still a dream in Hudson River as group names it 24th most polluted - Times Union ALBANY — After four decades of federal law meant to clean the nation's rivers and lakes, the Hudson River remains the 24th most polluted river in the United States, according to a report released Friday by an environmental group. The report named the Finch Paper plant in Glens Falls as the source of nearly 90 percent of industrial chemical pollution that went into the river in 2010, based on records from the federal Toxic Release Inventory. Two other New York rivers also made the list of the nation's top 40 most-polluted rivers: the Genesee, which flows through Rochester, ranked 32nd; the Seneca, north of the Finger Lakes, ranked 33rd. Each had about 1.4 million pounds of pollution, the report said. (March 24, 2012) Albany, Troy, Schenectady, Saratoga News, Weather, Sports, Capitol | timesunion.com - Times Union [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Report: Genesee, Seneca rivers rank among most polluted | Rochester Business Journal New York business news and information The Genesee River ranks 32nd among the most polluted rivers and lakes in the country, a study released Friday by a New York City environmental advocacy group shows. The Genesee, Seneca and Hudson rivers in New York all are among the top 40 among more than 1,900 rivers, streams and lakes analyzed, the study found. (March 23, 2012) Home | Rochester Business Journal New York business news and information [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- UR receives grant to study pollution in river | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com Because of high levels of pollutants and overfishing, the sturgeon had long disappeared from the northern part of the Genesee River that empties into Lake Ontario. But many of the 1,900 sturgeon that were put into this stretch of the Genesee beginning in 2003 seem to have done well — a sign, federal and local officials say, that cleanup efforts are starting to pay off. Now, a $308,000 federal grant to the University of Rochester will fund a study conducted over the next three years that takes blood samples from the fish to determine the concentration of various pollutants. (October 18, 2011) Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York | democratandchronicle.com [more on Genesee River in our area]
- ENVIRONMENT: Fishing for water-quality clues - News Articles - Rochester City Newspaper Sturgeon and the Genesee River may be coming full circle. Pollution played a role in nearly wiping out the lower Genesee's sturgeon population, and now the prehistoric-looking fish may help researchers track the river's health over the next century. Improved conditions in the lower Genesee made it possible for the US Geological Survey, a federal scientific agency, to reintroduce sturgeon into the river in 2003. The fish are doing well and that's a positive sign for the river's environmental health, says Jeff Wyatt, chair of the Department of Comparative Medicine at the University of Rochester's School of Medicine and Dentistry. (September 14, 2011) Rochester NY Local News, Rochester NY Politics, NY News Coverage, Rochester NY Opinion - Rochester City Newspaper [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- City looking for help with harbor master plan | Democrat and Chronicle | democratandchronicle.com Developing a Harbor Master Plan for the Genesee River stretch approaching Lake Ontario would be a step toward creating an advocacy and oversight entity that hasn't existed in more than 30 years, a top city official said. "There is a need to put some structure in place, and to get a common voice for funding issues and to resolve issues as well," said Mark Gregor, the city's manager of port redevelopment. (August 29, 2011) Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York | democratandchronicle.com [more on Genesee River in our area]
- WXXI: Dry Weather, Construction Drop Genesee Water Level (2011-08-04) ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) - Water levels are dramatically lower than normal in parts of the Genesee River. The combination of dry weather and a construction project has significantly dropped water levels. According to the U-S Geological Survey, the water flow of the Genesee River at the Ford Street Bridge is 10-percent below average. (August 4, 2011) WXXI NewsRoom [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- One New York river lands on American Rivers Most Endangered List | 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River is not on the American Rivers list of America’s Most Endangered Rivers list, which was released early this morning. But the river that tops the list, the Susquehanna River, stretches into New York. (May 17, 2011) 520 - An Environmental Blog | Rochester Democrat and Chronicle [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- River Crisis in Rochester? Why Failing to Dredge Could Affect You - Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events - 13WHAM.com Every day, the Genesee River is slowly being blocked. That's because every year, about a foot and a half of sediment builds up on the floor of the river. While this might not matter to many people in the Rochester area, there are numerous possible consequences if the river is not dredged. "I've heard the horror stories that if it isn't dredged, it'll fill right in and there won't be access at all," says Mike Parker, president of the Charlotte Community Association. (April 12, 2011) Home - Rochester, News, Weather, Sports, and Events - 13WHAM.com [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Meeting revisits Marcellus Shale as new rules are drafted - Wellsville, NY - Wellsville Daily Reporter Public concern over the amount of water used in fracturing and the toxicity of the water recovered initiated the program. Water withdrawal for fracturing of wells will be from rivers and streams and lakes, Rahm explained adding that it takes about 4 million gallons of water to hydraulically fracture a well. “That is about how much water the City of Ithaca uses in a day,” said Rahm. The natural flow of some are creeks and rivers is being monitored, Rahm said, showing a map which indicated that the Genesee River flow is being monitored by the U.S. Geological Service with a gage around Belmont to determine when water can be safely withdrawn from the river without compromising the flow and habitat. He said that information has been taken into consideration regarding the new regulations. (March 21, 2011) Homepage - Wellsville, NY - Wellsville Daily Reporter [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Study investigates water quality of Genesee River | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle Makarewicz's study, begun in May, comes amid increased focus on water quality in the Genesee. Early this year federal officials named the river's watershed as one of just five that will receive extra attention under the Obama administration's $475 million Great Lakes Restoration Initiative. The priority designation has already resulted in additional federal money being made available to address agricultural runoff, a prime source of pollutants in the river. (December 20, 2010) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- State Environmental Commissioner Celebrates Progress along the Genesee River - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation Site Chosen to Highlight Environmental Gains since Original "Earth Day" New York State Environmental Conservation Commissioner Pete Grannis celebrated this week's 40th anniversary of Earth Day by highlighting progress in the Greater Rochester area at a news conference today at Turning Point Park on the Genesee River. (April 20, 2010) Press Releases - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- DEC chief hails Genesee River as proof of strides since first Earth Day | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River has seen great improvement since Earth Day began 40 years ago, New York state Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Pete Grannis said Tuesday afternoon. Back then, communities were releasing untreated and undertreated sewage into the river, and industries were discharging their waste products directly into the water. (April 21, 2010) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Top NY court allows projects into cleanup program - BusinessWeek New York's top court ordered conservation officials Thursday to allow the Lighthouse Pointe redevelopment project in Rochester into the state's brownfields cleanup program, making it eligible for an estimated $25 million in tax credits and release from further liability for old contamination after the job is done. The Court of Appeals concluded that the 47 acres along the Genesee River and Lake Ontario are sufficiently contaminated to qualify and that the Department of Environmental Conservation threshold was too high. (February 18, 2010) BusinessWeek - Business News, Stock Market & Financial Advice [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- EPA outlines plan to save Great Lakes | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle The Genesee River watershed is one of five areas singled out for extra attention in a report released Sunday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Obama administration has developed a five-year blueprint for rescuing the Great Lakes, a sprawling ecosystem plagued by toxic contamination, shrinking wildlife habitat and invasive species. (February 22, 2010) democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York [more on Great Lakes in our area]
- Genesee River watershed targeted in Obama plan to clean up Great Lakes | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — The Obama administration has developed a five-year blueprint for rescuing the Great Lakes, a sprawling ecosystem plagued by toxic contamination, shrinking wildlife habitat and invasive species. The plan, released today by Lisa Jackson, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, envisions spending more than $2.2 billion for long-awaited repairs after a century of damage to the lakes, which hold 20 percent of the world's fresh water. (February 21, 2010) democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Greece Arcadia High School students aboard floating classroom | Water samples taken from the mouth of the Genesee River near Lake Ontario show how significant human interaction with the waterways can be, a group of high school students learned on Wednesday. (October 23, 09) RocEarth [more on Environmental Education in our area]
- Development on Genesee River is Flourishing Development along the Genesee River is being done in two phases. The first started in 2000. The second phase started in 2007. Its part of a 12 year plan to get development along the Genesee River. And it seems to be working. (October 8, 09) RochesterHomePage [more on the Genesee River in our area]
- Genesee River alive and well in Rochester |Most of us know the local history. Rochester cut its teeth on the power of the Genesee River. The rambling water powered the grist mills that processed wheat and gave Rochester its early nickname, "Flour City." The ability to ship that high-quality flour to the world via the Erie Canal made Rochester a boomtown in the early 1800s. (September 22/09) http://www.democratandchronicle.com/ [more on Genesee River]
- Protecting the Genesee in 'God's Country' | democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle GENESEE, Pa. — The Genesee River spills over High Falls in Rochester like a torrent of chocolate milk cascading off the breakfast table from a child's toppled SpongeBob cup. It's the mud, sediment and other stuff of 160 miles of rolling river that turns the clear water from John Torok's spring in Gold, Pa., into the milky-brown plume fanning out from the Port of Rochester into Lake Ontario. (July 29, 09) Democratandchronicle.com | Democrat and Chronicle | Rochester news, community, entertainment, yellow pages and classifieds. Serving Rochester, New York
- There's something fishy in the Genesee - again - News Articles - Rochester City Newspaper Consider this as a mascot for the Genesee River's ongoing recovery: the lake sturgeon. More than a century ago, the beastly fish thrived in the Lower Genesee - sturgeons were known in some circles as "Albany beef" because they were plentiful, tasty, and huge. But overfishing and pollution caused their decline - causing them to almost disappear. (Dec 25, 09) Rochester City Newspaper
- Undredged river caused shallow Port - A survey of the Genesee River at the Port of Rochester this week found water depths have lessened as much as three feet in the past year, making the waterway more shallow. The U.S. Corps of Engineers survey, released today, found the outer channel between the river piers is among the most affected by sediment build up, or shoaling. Last month, the Stephen B. Roman, a cement boat and the only freighter still operating on the river, ran aground as it attempted to traverse the river. (April 4, 07) Democrat & Chronicle
- Genesee River Dredging Funds Cut - 13WHAM.com - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will not dredge the Genesee River as planned this summer, because of federal budget cuts. The $920,000 funding cut came as a surprise to local officials and Charlotte residents, who did not learn of it until a major cargo ship got stuck in the mouth of the river last Thursday. - (March 29, 2007) Home - 13WHAM.com
- Silt levels of Genesee surveyed next week - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers doesn't expect to get a survey crew out on the Genesee River to measure the extent of shoaling at least until Monday. (March 29,07) Democrat & Chronicle
- Progress made in lakes cleanup - Oswego River off problem list, but Genesee remains— The Oswego River was officially removed from a binational list of the Great Lakes' most polluted tributaries Tuesday — the first American site to mark such a milestone. Meanwhile, the Genesee River, which appears on the same list of 43 polluted sites, needs several more years of effort before it can be considered healthy. (July 26, 2006) Democrat and Chronicle
- SPRING CLEANING - Paul Noto knows all about big cleaning jobs. He's the operations manager for the city's environmental-services department. And this week, his department begins working on one of its more unusual assignments: cleaning the Genesee River. Each spring, environmental workers begin removing debris that collects in what the department calls "the river pool" --- the stretch of water from the Court Street dam north to the HighFalls. The debris consists mostly of trees and brush, drawn into the water by erosion from melting ice and strong currents along the river banks from as far south as the Mount Morris Dam. But there's more interesting stuff, too. (March 15, 2006) City Newspaper
- Democrat & Chronicle: Genesee river current has a new spark — The Genesee River once drove the Rochester economy by powering flour mills. Now city officials want it to power a new emerging industry — fuel cell technology. The city has applied for a New York State Energy Research and Development Authority grant to study the feasibility of using the river and the 96-foot-high waterfalls downtown as a hydrogen source to power fuel cells. (April 11, 2004) Democrat and Chronicle
- DEC Teaches Judges About Gorge - Few realize you'd have to go to Alaska to find the sort of unique fishing environment the Genesee River gorge offers. Its urban setting also make it a place for problems, not just fishing and gaming problems, but those involving alcohol and drugs. The DEC provided a guided tour of the gorge to five Rochester City Court judges Tuesday. (July 30, 2003) R News: Your NewsChannel
- Democrat & Chronicle: 50 talk about developing river (October 3, 2002) — More than 50 people attended a public workshop Wednesday about how to spur development along and to improve access to the Genesee River between East Main Street and the Inner Loop to the north. Democrat and Chronicle
- Democrat & Chronicle: Rochester gets river-access plan — The Crowne Plaza hotel knows the benefit of having the Genesee River in its back yard. "We have a lot of guests here who request river-view rooms," said Vince McIntyre, director of security at the hotel. "It's a really big deal for us." (April 15, 2002) DemocratandChronicle.com
- Federal funds to ease Great Lakes pollution The Genesee River and other waterways that feed into Lake Ontario could benefit from a federal bill that adds $250 million over the next five years for the prevention of Great Lakes pollution. (July 12, 2001) --DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
- Sunken Tugboat Leaking Fuel The Department of Environmental Conservation is cleaning up an oily mess on the Genesee River, left behind when a tugboat sank. (January 16, 2001) RNews.
Grounded Tugboat Leaks Oil Into The Genesee Rochester, NY -
Crews worked to clean up a small fuel oil leak from a grounded
tugboat in the Genesee River near Charlotte on Monday. New York
State Department of Environmental Conservation officials said
the boat released about 200 gallons of oil into the river, but
said the environmental impact of the spill will be minimal. DEC
officials also said investigators had been working to determine
the source of the spill for about a week.
(January 15, 2001) RochesterToday
- Oil Spill Clean Up Continues The clean up of the oil spill in the Genesee River continues Monday. A sunken tug boat had been leaking fuel oil into the Genesee River, which can be seen over a two mile stretch. (January 15, 2001) WHEC
- A local researcher's heavenly sight The plumes of smoke extending from the shoreline are pollutants being dumped into Lake Ontario from the Genesee River and runoff from land. (July 10, 2000) Henrietta Post.
- Gore announces $50 million for Great Lakes cleanup Activists say allocation won't be enough for Genesee River-lake area, other sites - 01/11/00--DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
- DEC frets over river project, wetlands Genesee water level will be dropped in order to repair wall near Corn Hill --12/12/99DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE
- "The Environmental Health Committee of the Board of Health is charged with collecting community input about the Environmental Health Report Card. (File is in Portable Document File Help for format.)The Committee will assess the information gathered and make recommendations to the Board of Health regarding priorities for action to improve the environmental health of our community. Included with the report card is a form to give people an opportunity to provide input about priorities for action. Please feel free to fill it out, make comments and send it back to us." This document includes a report on the health of the Genesee River.
still a trash heap The Genesee River is a natural resource
people downtown. --9/25/99--TOP NEWS From WHEC, and MSNBC
- Junk in the Genesee River "-The low water has not only revealed a lot of junk, but also bureaucratic confusion over how to clean it out."--7/13/99 --TOP NEWS From WHEC, and MSNBC
- River fertilizes crop of dreams ---7/12/99 DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE Digital
spoils a beautiful view The Genesee River downtown is
looking like a
landfill, but a cleanup is questionable ---7/12/99 DEMOCRAT AND CHRONICLE Digital
- HURRICANE AGNES and the GENESEE RIVER FLOODING--National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
- Snow Being Dumped Into Genesee River 1/16/99----TOP NEWS From WHEC, and MSNBC
- From Rochester Committee for Scientific Information (RCSI)--Water Conservation.
- Chemicals Dumped in Rivers? Industry discharged 1 billion pounds of toxic chemicals into U.S. waterways from 1992 to 1996...
- Dishonorable Discharge Under existing federal pollution control laws, the American people are kept in the dark about the vast majority of toxic pollution spewed into the environment by U.S. industry.
- EPA Reports on Toxic Releases to Air, Water and Land in New York NEW YORK, N.Y.-- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reported today in its annual Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) that the 99.7 million pounds of toxic chemicals listed as released in New York during 1988 had dropped to 26 million pounds in 1996, a decrease over the eight-year period of 73.9%.
- PIRG: Troubled Waters: Executive Summary Year after year, America’s waterways continue to serve as dumping grounds for toxic pollution. Today, 26 years after the enactment of the Clean Water Act, thousands of polluters flush millions of pounds of toxic substances into rivers and streams with impunity, without any obligation to inform the communities downstream about the vast majority of toxic chemical use or discharges.
- Sierra Club Roch. Regional Group: 1995 TRI-DISCHARGES TO WATER
- The 50 most polluted rivers or waterbodies in the U.S. The Genesee River with 3,672,733 Total pounds of direct toxic discharges to water (1990-1994) ranks 20th.
- Rochester, New York Facilities Reporting TRI Discharges to Water in Rochester, New York
- Genesee River ranks "second among U.S. rivers that had cancer-causing chemicals dumped into them during a recent five-year period"--Rochester Digital Edition article: (Genesee earns grim ranking ), according to The State Public Interest Research Groups (PIRGs). Go here http://www.pirg.org/enviro/toxics/waters98/index.htm to read the full report and here http://www.pirg.org/enviro/toxics/waters98/table10.htm to see the how the Genesee River stacks up against other U.S. Rivers.
The Genesee River and the Lower Falls. Photo by Frank J. Regan.
Magnificent Lower Falls on the Genesee River.
(Above scripts from Dynamic Drive)
Genesee River Resources on the Internet
- Get studies on the Genesee River here, from Digital Commons @ Brockport
- Genesee River Watershed Project Volume 2 Water Quality Analysis of the Upper Genesee River Watershed: Nutrient Concentration and Loading, Identification of Point and Nonpoint Sources of Pollution, Total Maximum Daily Load, and an Assessment of Management Practices using the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) Model
- Genesee River Watershed Project. Water Quality Analysis of the Black Creek Watershed. Volume 4. Nutrient Concentration and Loading, Identification of Point and Nonpoint Sources of Pollution, Total Maximum Daily Load, and an Assessment of Management Practices using the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) Model. A report to the USDA.
- Learn about Center for Environmental Initiatives' ‘Genesee RiverWatch Initiative’, a major effort to clean up our waters of the Genesee River, its tributaries and Lake Ontario. Rochester is considering many water-front development projects [Read: Water quality concerns for Rochester, NY’s Local Waterfront Revitalization Program] but to make these project viable the waters that run through them must be clean and healthy.
- Genesee River Wilds Project "The Genesee River Wilds Project is a coalition of groups and individuals who invest time, energy, funding, and other resources in the development of an environmentally sustainable system of natural parks concentrated along the Genesee River in the “Genesee River Wilds.” This phrase refers to the Genesee River and its watershed from the river’s sources in Potter County, Pennsylvania, to the southern boundary of Letchworth State Park in New York State. The Genesee River Wilds Project represents and partners with federal, state, county, municipal, and non-profit organizations; business corporations; educational institutions; landowners; farmers; anglers; hunters; hikers; mountain bikers; kayak and canoe enthusiasts; and many others who participate in various official and unofficial ways. The coalition works to improve the health of the upper Genesee River and its watershed; protect them from future environmental threats; and enhance their recreational potential. "
- Genesee River Watershed - NYS Dept. of Environmental Conservation A brief overview of this watershed and its water quality
- River Network - Home Page: River Network River Network's mission is to help people organize to protect and restore rivers and watersheds.
American Rivers: Celebrating 25
years of bringing rivers to life, American
Rivers is North America's leading national
river-conservation organization. Our mission is
protect and restore America's river systems and to foster a river stewardship ethic.
- The World’s Water: a site dedicated to providing up-to-date water resources information and data, and connections to organizations, institutions, and individuals working on a wide range of global freshwater problems and solutions.
- Genesee River - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The Genesee River is a North American river flowing northward through the Twin Tiers of Pennsylvania and New York. Falls along the river are within the gorge of Letchworth State Park and within the city of Rochester. The Mount Morris Dam built in 1952 is the largest flood control dam east of the Mississippi River; its capacity was only exceeded in 1972 during Hurricane Agnes. The river provided the original power for the Rochester area, and 19th century mills along the river made Rochester one of the leading producers of flour in North America, earning the city one of its nicknames "Flour City". The river still provides hydroelectric power for downtown Rochester to this day.