Representatives say the new funding would help bolster Buffalo Niagara’s decades-long water conservation efforts to restore water. Skagaquada Creek
Schumer, Gillibrand, Higgins: Fed $$$ is stepping in to help clean up Western New York’s waters and environment
US Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer, US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, and US Congressman Brian Higgins announced today that the Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper has been recommended to receive more than $900,000 in federal funding from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for climate-ready coasts. . Initiative to restore the Skagaquada Creek watershed. The federal funding, created in the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), will support community members who have long worked together to engage affected communities, enable appropriate outreach efforts to inform the community of the Creek Restoration and Resilience Plan, and advance efforts to restore Habitat along the creek.
“The Scajaquada Creek watershed is a vital waterway for Western New York communities, connecting the Black Rock Canal and Lake Erie to neighborhoods all over Buffalo, but for decades, it has been plagued by harmful pollution and sewage, endangering the health of our communities. The Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper works tirelessly. to clean up our environments, and NOAA’s investment today will help intensify efforts to restore these key watersheds.” Senator Schumer said. “I am proud to provide this vital funding and support ongoing efforts to clean up Scajaquada Creek and build a cleaner, more resilient future for Western New York.”
“The Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper is doing important work to protect and restore the waterways of Western New York,” Senator Gillibrand said. “I am proud to announce $900,000 in funding recommended today to help the organization restore one of the region’s most important waterways and will continue to fight for more federal resources to build a cleaner, greener New York.”
“We must tackle climate change in order to create a better future for our society. This means making long-term investments that improve our freshwater systems and restore their natural habitats,” Congressman Higgins said. “Thanks to historic investments from the bipartisan Infrastructure Act and the Inflation Reduction Act, NOAA is providing the Western New York community with long-sought resources to restore the Scajaquada Creek watershed. Serving East Buffalo, Riverside, Black Rock, and portions of Cheektowaga, the funding will create a healthier future for thousands Western New Yorkers who live in these communities.”
“The Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper has been committed to restoring Scajaquada Creek for over 30 years, and with this latest momentum, we are finally on an accelerated path to repeat the collaborative success we have had on the Buffalo River,” said Jill Jedlica, executive director of the Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper. “Restoring the habitat and resilience of Scajaquada Creek will in turn reconnect the many communities along its corridor, but this is no small task. A transformative return to a healthy waterway requires completing technical studies and planning with the inclusion of diverse community voices as a cornerstone of this work. NOAA has played an important role in many other restoration efforts in the Buffalo and Niagara Rivers, and we are grateful and excited to continue working with our federal partners on Scajaquada Creek.”
Not only will this project build a coalition of residents and organizations that have long advocated for the restoration of Scajaquada Creek, but it will work to ensure that the restoration produces meaningful results for those who live along the communities surrounding the creek, particularly in Buffalo’s East Side and Western Cheektowaga. alive. This includes amending the Scajaquada Creek Watershed Management Plan to prioritize inclusiveness, and developing an ecological restoration and resilience plan.
Scajaquada Creek’s catchment area is 29 square miles and includes the city of Buffalo, Chictawaga, DePio, and Lancaster. The creek itself extends 13 miles west from its headwaters in Lancaster to its mouth at Black Rock Canal in Buffalo City. Large portions of the 13-mile creek have been altered or damaged in some way—including hardened shores, straight channels, buried sections, polluted brown fields, and sewage overflows.
NOAA’s Climate-Ready Coasts Initiative is deploying millions from a bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to fund projects in 30 coastal states that support coastal communities to respond to climate change. Federal funding will go toward high-impact natural infrastructure projects that create climate solutions by storing carbon; enhancing the capacity of coastal communities to respond to high-impact weather events, pollution and marine debris; restoring coastal habitats to help wildlife and humans thrive; build capacity of disadvantaged communities to address climate risks and support community-driven restoration; and creating job opportunities in local communities.