Lake Ontario

6:47am

Wed July 16, 2014
Drones

Crashed Air Force drone was flying with gear that couldn't handle cold

An MQ-9 Reaper drone in the hanger at Hancock Airfield in Syracuse. (File photo)
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Besides some clouds on Nov. 12, 2013, Air National Guard crew members recalled to accident investigators that it was a nice day for flying.

But it was a cold, late fall day, just below freezing on the ground at Fort Drum, where the Air National Guard launches its remotely piloted aircraft for training missions over upstate New York. 

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8:47am

Mon July 14, 2014
Regional Coverage

Air Force plane found deep below Lake Ontario from 1952 crash

A sonar image of the C-45 Air Force plane that crashed in 1952. It's now several hundred feet below the Lake Ontario surface.
Roger Pawlowski

A team of shipwreck explorers recently discovered an Air Force plane deep below the surface of Lake Ontario, more than 60 years after it crashed.

It was late at night on September 11, 1952 when an Air force C-45 was flying from Massachusetts to Grifiss Air Force base in Rome. But before it could reach Grifiss, it lost an engine. The pilot set the plane on autopilot and the five member crew parachuted out.

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7:26am

Mon July 7, 2014
Environment

Environmental group tests Erie Canal and Oswego River water for invasive species

The Nature Conservancy's Andrew Tucker empties water from a collection tube into a container held by Benjamin Wegleitener.
Gino Geruntino WRVO

The Nature Conservancy and other environmental groups are making use of a recently developed DNA sampling technique to determine whether or not any invasive species might be swimming, living or growing in the Oswego River and Erie Canal. By taking hundreds of water samples, the group believes it can slow the growth of invasive species in the state.

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6:24am

Wed June 18, 2014
Environment

IJC backs Plan 2014 to control Lake Ontario water levels

Boaters are expected to see longer seasons two out of every three years as part of Plan 2014.
Ray Sawhill/flickr

The International Joint Commission says its recommendations to help restore some of the natural water levels on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence Seaway will also benefit the lake's wetland wildlife. According to the commission, Plan 2014 will help Lake Ontario get closer to its natural ebb and flow throughout the year.

Commissioner Dereth Glance says Plan 2014 strikes a balance between the current plan and the lakes original water levels about 60 years ago.
 

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3:45pm

Tue April 8, 2014
drones

Investigation into drone crash nearing completion

An MQ-9 Reaper drone operated by the 174th Air National Guard Attack Wing at Hancock Airfield.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

The Air Force's investigation into the crash of a drone aircraft into Lake Ontario last fall is nearing completion and should be made public later this spring.

Investigators from the Air Force Investigations Board wrapped up the on-site investigation at Hancock Airfield on March 20, according to 174th Air Guard Attack Wing spokeswoman Maj. Sandy Stoquert.

Investigators did not give the 174th a preliminary report or portions of its finding yet, Stoquert said.

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2:35pm

Tue March 18, 2014
Fishing

Fish stocking program boosting Lake Ontario's viability

Fishers on the Salmon River, a tributary to Lake Ontario.
David Chanatry/New York State Reporting Project

Lake Ontario is boasting some of the best sport fishing among the Great Lakes, thanks to a successful stocking program by New York state's environmental management agency.

The Department of Environmental Conservation pumps ample supplies of trout and salmon into Lake Ontario and its tributaries every year. It attracts anglers from all over -- more than 2.5 million each season.

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2:59pm

Fri February 7, 2014
Environment

Upstate communities tackle pollution in the Genesee River

Algae on Ontario Beach outside of Rochester on Lake Ontario
Center for Environmental Initiatives

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.

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8:26pm

Thu November 14, 2013
Regional Coverage

Military finds pieces of crashed drone; investigation continues

An MQ-9 Reaper drone, like this one seen in a hanger at Hancock Airfield, crashed Tuesday into Lake Ontario. The MQ-9s are operated by the 174th Attack Wing of the Air National Guard.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Updated, Thursday, 8:26 p.m.:

The Air National Guard has found pieces of its unmanned drone that crashed into Lake Ontario earlier this week.

Recovery efforts continued on Thursday and debris was found along the shoreline, according to Maj. Sandy Stoquert, a public affairs officer for the 174th Attack Wing based in Syracuse.

The MQ-9 Reaper crashed into the eastern part of the lake Tuesday afternoon during a training flight that had taken off three hours earlier from Ft. Drum.

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5:55am

Thu November 14, 2013
Regional Coverage

Syracuse Peace Council: drone crash should 'poke people awake'

An MQ-9 Reaper drone, like this one seen in a hanger at Hancock Airfield, crashed Tuesday into Lake Ontario under command of the 174th Attack Wing of the Air National Guard.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Anti-drone activists hope the recent crash of an unmanned military drone aircraft will "poke people awake" about their dangers.

No one was injured when the 174th Attack Wing of the Air National Guard lost an MQ-9 Reaper drone into Lake Ontario during a training flight Tuesday, but the 8,000 pound aircraft crashed just 20 miles northeast of Oswego and 12 miles off shore.

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4:28pm

Thu October 24, 2013
Business

Money for port and canal upgrades passes House

The Port of Oswego has won money to upgrade its rail, but it would also like money for dredging.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

More federal dollars being available to make upgrades to ports and waterways in upstate New York is closer to reality as the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, or WRRDA, passed the House of Representatives last night.

The bill frees up $8.2 billion in funds for water infrastructure upgrades. It also defunds never-implemented projects worth $12 billion and streamlines applications and approvals of funding.

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4:50pm

Fri October 4, 2013
Environment

Should a ship be deliberately sunk in Lake Ontario?

Lake Ontario.
Vlad Litvinov Flickr

The possibility of deliberately sinking a ship in Lake Ontario will be discussed at a seminar Saturday at SUNY Oswego. Dave White, of New York Sea Grant, which is hosting the conference, says sinking a vessel along the shoreline would create a tourism spot for recreational divers and also provide a habitat for fish.

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8:15am

Thu August 15, 2013
Environment

Lockport residents continue waiting for Eighteenmile Creek cleanup plan

A sign warning residents of contamination at Eighteenmile Creek.
Ashley Hirtzel/WBFO

The Environmental Protection Agency outlined its plans to clean up a heavily polluted creek at a public meeting in Lockport on Tuesday. But some residents in the western New York community are concerned that the plans won’t happen fast enough, with an official decision not scheduled until the end of September.

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6:53am

Wed July 17, 2013
Environment

Lake Ontario, St. Lawrence River pose concerns for IJC

A visitor walks along the Lake Ontario shoreline.
Ray Sawhill/flickr

The organization responsible for regulating water levels on Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River is holding a series of public hearings in upstate New York and Canada this week, presenting a new management plan. The International Joint Commission, or IJC, attracted criticism for its last draft of the plan, called Bv7, which aimed to alter water levels to decrease environmental damage around the Great Lake.

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6:40am

Thu July 4, 2013
Regional Coverage

Sailing through history

The Lois McClure on Lake Champlain.
Sarah Harris/Innovation Trail

The Lois McClure is a replica of an 1862 canal schooner that's also a floating museum. This summer she's commemorating 19th century transportation history by traveling from Lake Champlain, across the canal system to Buffalo, down the St. Lawrence river to Montreal, and back again.

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9:16am

Fri June 14, 2013
Environment

Another new St. Lawrence and Lake Ontario water levels plan

Green groups are hoping the new water levels plan improves wetlands along the St. Lawrence River.
Photo: Jenni Werndorf

People along the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario will get a chance to weigh in on a new water levels plan next month.

Regulators say the plan, called “Plan 2014,” still helps the environment by returning more natural ebbs and flows to the water bodies. But they would have caused more shoreline damage on Lake Ontario.

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8:34am

Sat May 18, 2013
Environment

Why low Lake Ontario levels mean high St. Lawrence levels

Iroquois Dam.
Photo courtesy New York Power Authority

For quite some time, the Great Lakes -- from Superior to Ontario -- have been at historically low water levels. So many people were surprised  this week that regulators are lowering the gates at the Iroquois Dam near Ogdensburg because the St. Lawrence River is too high.

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4:08pm

Thu May 16, 2013
Science

Research torpedo away: vehicle collecting data on Lake Ontario

Mike Satchwell from SUNY-ESF launches a research vehicle into Lake Ontario as Russ Miller from the University of Michigan looks on.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

A small cylinder armed with research equipment is bobbing through Lake Ontario this week. It’s collecting data from a seasonal temperature barrier known as a thermal bar.

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5:58am

Sat May 4, 2013
Environment

Rising concern about changes to Lake Ontario water levels

A marina on Lake Ontario near Hamilton, Ontario in Canada.
Hamilton Conservation Authority via Flickr

The water levels in Lake Ontario have a significant impact on the economic and environmental viability of harbors in upstate New York and Canada. As a result, a proposed plan to change the management of those water levels has raised some concerns in waterfront communities.

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6:32am

Tue January 1, 2013
Environment

Reintroducing Atlantic salmon to the Salmon River

Fishers on the Salmon River
David Chanatry/New York State Reporting Project

In recent years both the federal and New York state governments have been studying how best to re-introduce – salmon -- to New York’s Salmon River.  That might come as a surprise to anyone who’s ever fished the river, known for its salmon of eye-popping size. 

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1:34pm

Tue December 11, 2012
Regional Coverage

Oscar the Standard Poodle

5:30pm

Thu November 29, 2012
Regional Coverage

Are central & northern NY prepared for a storm like Sandy?

As life starts to get back to normal in the parts of New York and New Jersey that were devastated by Hurricane Sandy, other areas of the country are asking themselves if they could have weathered that kind of storm.

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4:03pm

Wed July 25, 2012
-Nature of Things

The Great Lakes Week

John Weeks discusses the events of the 1984 Great Lakes Week. This festival included Native American storytelling, water sports, film screenings and concerts.WeeksThis essay describes the activities and goals of this free (and now extinct) celebration. Weeks explains how each citizen should be well aware of the history and uses of the 193 mile-long Lake Ontario.

4:44pm

Wed June 27, 2012
Regional Coverage

Developer pitches floating mega-complex for Port of Oswego

Two developers are proposing to construct a massive floating building on Lake Ontario that would incorporate residential space, science labs, and entertainment and business venues. The city of Oswego is considering this fantastic vision for inside its harbor’s break wall.

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8:26am

Fri June 15, 2012
Regional Coverage

Congressman Owens says Cuomo administration “noncommittal” on new water levels plan

Jamie Henderson Flickr

The new water levels proposal for the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario has garnered some criticism from a group of state lawmakers along the lake's southern shore. This week they asked the governor to oppose the plan.

Last week, Congressman Bill Owens came out in favor of the proposal and said he'd ask for Governor Andrew Cuomo's support. Both Owens and environmental advocates say the opposition's arguments aren't based on the facts of the new plan.

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10:49am

Thu June 14, 2012
Environment

Lake Ontario lawmakers ask Cuomo to halt IJC water levels plan

State lawmakers representing communities along the south shore of Lake Ontario are lining up against a plan to regulate water levels in the lake, and in the St. Lawrence River system.

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10:00pm

Wed April 11, 2012
Regional Coverage

Jefferson County officials oppose offshore wind in Lake Ontario

A group of Jefferson County legislators has for the second time in two years expressed opposition to offshore wind turbines in Lake Ontario. Almost two years ago, the New York Power Authority proposed an offshore wind turbine project, which Jefferson County rejected. Now the county may move to oppose federal overtures in that direction. 

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