EM’s West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) marked Earth Day this year by joining the Cattaraugus Creek Water Walkerz and Onondowaga’ Water Protectors to pay tribute to Mother Earth and bring awareness to the importance of protecting the Cattaraugus Creek and Lake Erie watershed for future generations

WEST VALLEY, N.Y.EM’s West Valley Demonstration Project (WVDP) marked Earth Day this year by joining the Cattaraugus Creek Water Walkerz and Onondowaga’ Water Protectors to pay tribute to Mother Earth and bring awareness to the importance of protecting the Cattaraugus Creek and Lake Erie watershed for future generations. Members of the Seneca Nation and local community and others gathered for a sunrise ceremony at WVDP. As the sun rose, Maria Maybee, Seneca Nation tribal member and event coordinator, asked everyone to form a circle as a symbol of togetherness, and they shared prayers to thank Mother Earth for all she provides. Participants then walked several miles, ending on the Seneca Territory. A cleanup of Cattaraugus Creek took place the following day. “We enjoy the many offerings Mother Earth provides, from the water we drink, the fish, deer, and vegetables we eat. It is important that we protect these natural resources from harm, especially for future generations so they, too, can benefit from these offerings. Water is life,” Maybee said. Pictured are participants in the sunrise ceremony.