The Division of Environmental Compliance Services develops and implements programs in partnership with a variety of stakeholders to address the pressing environmental needs and concerns of the region. The Division leads and supports the following programs and initiatives
Erie County provides municipalities, businesses, school districts, and residents with assistance for solid waste management, disposal, recycling and reporting. They target problematic and priority waste streams such as household hazardous waste, waste electronics, and pharmaceutical waste.
The Western New York Stormwater Coalition (WNYSC) is a forum for regulated communities to share resources and work in partnership toward compliance with the United States Environmental Protection Agency Phase II Stormwater requirements including outreach and education. Find out how you can prevent stormwater pollution.
The mission of the Lake Erie Watershed Protection Alliance (LEWPA) is to foster collaboration and partnerships within the watershed to address regional water quality and quantity concerns and in doing so, protect and enhance our Lake Erie resource. The Alliance includes Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, and Erie counties and is currently working on developing a regional Niagara River Lake Erie Watershed Management Plan.
The Rain Barrel Painting Contest for schools and student-based community groups in Erie and Niagara counties is held annually in honor of Earth Day! All are encouraged to enter as a team, either through a class or an after-school program, to design and paint a rain barrel provided by the Coca-Cola Bottling Company of Buffalo, Inc. All participating schools will receive their final painted rain barrels to use, donate or raffle as desired.
As outlined in Erie County’s Economic Development Plan, “Initiatives for a Smart Economy”, the development of an inter-departmental Green Team focusing on energy reduction and resource conservation throughout Erie County operations is a priority in the revitalization of our community and economy.
The Erie County Environmental Management Council is a group of volunteers appointed by the County Executive to advise county government regarding environmental issues impacting Erie County and its residents. The volunteer council members represent local municipalities, as well as other public and private agencies & organizations operating within the county dedicated to protecting our natural environment and resources.
Erie County's natural habitat "pocket parks" are situated along the Buffalo River, which is designated as a toxic water body, or “Area of Concern” (AOC). The river has undergone extensive cleanup over the last several years. As part of the recovery effort, US EPA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative has invested millions of dollars in shoreline and habitat restoration to revive a healthy ecosystem.
The Division of Environmental Compliance staff are available to provide presentations to community groups and organizations on pertinent environmental subjects.
The Western New York Sustainable Business Roundtable
The WNY Sustainable Business Roundtable (WNYSBR) is a “business-driven” organization whose members are businesses and organizations that have signed a pledge to create and implement a sustainability plan. More than 50 businesses in the region have become members.
Erie County supports the WNYSBR in two distinct ways. First, Erie County staffs the WNYSBR through a US Environmental Protection Agency Region 2 grant to Empire State Development and Erie County. Second, Erie County serves on the WNYSBR’s Board of Directors. The County has also signed the WNYSBR pledge and, thus, is a member.
The WNYSBR holds monthly events, such as meetings, workshops, and expos, to assist its members with their “sustainability journey.” For more information, please visit the WNY Sustainable Business Roundtable website.
Erie County Water Quality Committee
The Erie County Water Quality Committee's (ECWQC) mission is to protect and improve the quality of both surface and groundwater for their intended uses, primarily through the reduction of nonpoint source pollution and by focusing on Erie County water-related issues. For more information, please visit the Erie County Soil and Water Conservation District's ECWQC website. For meeting information, please visit the upcoming meetings webpage.
Erie County Fisheries Advisory Board
The Erie County Fisheries Advisory Board (FAB) consists of 12 members, residents of the County of Erie, and includes representatives of sports and recreational fishing, as well as various fields of marine and aquatic sciences. The board advises the department on matters concerning protection, development, access to fisheries, and related issues, and upon such additional matters as may be requested by the Commissioner or by the County Executive.
Visit the Erie and Niagara Counties Fishing Guide for the WNY Hot Spot Fishing Map and additional information about the Fisheries Advisory Board. For meetings of the FAB visit our department Calendar.
Brownfield and Urban Redevelopment
The urban center and first ring suburbs are now victims of their earlier success in attracting industry and commerce to the Western New York area. Often these lands are dotted with urban blight or are considered brownfields, which mean these lands may have some level of contamination. Brownfield sites range from abandoned gas stations to rail yards and former heavy industrial manufacturing plants. Working with the Office of Economic Development, the Division offers technical facilitation services among environmental agencies and the project's redevelopment team.
Inactive Hazardous Waste Sites
The Division provides planning and technical support for the County's inactive hazardous waste sites and participates in a number of coalitions organized to address these sites including the Coalition Against Nuclear Materials in Tonawanda and the West Valley Citizen's Task Force. For more information, please visit the West Valley Citizen's Task Force website.