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Environmental Firm Outlines More Pollution Fines to Crestwood


WATKINS GLEN (WENY) -- WENY has been following the ongoing battle between Crestwood Midstream and the environmentalists who say the company is continuing to pollute the finger lakes. Over the course of this ongoing battle, the environmental firm Toxics Targeting has consistently informed residents of toxic spills into our lakes--many of which they say are at the hands of the Crestwood/US Salt facility

The most recent fine to the company comes from over 9 years worth of pollution. Now, those at the forefront of Toxic Targeting say they're calling on Governor Cuomo to put a stop to it.

"We're basically saying, NY State Department of Conservation, who serves at the pleasure of the governor, has got to A) stop approving these gas storage facilities, including methane as well as petroleum natural gas," says Toxics Targeting President Walter Hang. "The DEC can't prevent problems and they can't clean them up. That's A number one, but we also now know that all of the finger lakes have been fighting these water quality problems."

Toxics Targeting is bringing to light acquired documentation stating U-S Salt was fined over 57-thousand dollars for repeatedly polluting Seneca Lake over the past 9 years. In two separate reports in 2012 and 2016, the documents from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation identify repeated incidents of pollutants and thousands of gallons of brine discharged into Seneca Lake.

Toxics Targeting has since written Governor Cuomo to request he adopt a temporary ban on all fossil fuel infrastructure projects.

In a statement, Hang warned the public that residents "simply cannot trust US Salt to be honest about it's environmental track record," noting that this polluted water in Seneca Lake provides drinking water for much of the Southern Tier.

"The bottom line is, these fossil fuels are extremely polluting and they contribute to global climate change," says Hang. "If we're not supposed to be using them and we want to wean ourselves off of this addiction to natural gas oil, we should start immediately and that's why we're calling on governor cuomo to cut production of these polluting fossil fuels."

WENY reached out to Crestwood Midstream, which operates U-S Salt, regarding these past cases of pollution.

We are waiting for the company to issue a statement in response and will continue to update this story.