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Board must halt black water discharges after inky incident at Niagara Falls

Foul-smelling wastewater blackened the water below the famous landmark last month, prompting a state investigation

August 24, 2017  by The Associated Press

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y.—State officials have told a western New York public agency that it must cease the type of wastewater discharges that caused a stretch of the Niagara River below Niagara Falls to turn black and smelly.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the Department of Environmental Conservation has ordered the Niagara Falls Water Board to cease any discharges from the agency’s sediment basin until the state’s investigation into the July 29 black water discharge is completed.

Workers at the local wastewater treatment plant located upriver from the falls let a pump run too long while emptying a sedimentation basin. The basin contained residue from the cleaning of carbon filters at the plant.

The Democratic governor says the DEC has told the board to submit a report on the discharge by Sept. 1.