A vital part of the Milwaukee River is now safer and cleaner thanks to a long-term partnership between We Energies and local, state and federal stakeholders.

Over the past year, We Energies remediated contaminated sediment found in 0.6 miles of the river near East Erie and North Jefferson streets. The contamination is associated with the operation of a manufactured gas plant that shut down more than 50 years ago.

Since the cleanup efforts began, the company and its contract crews have remediated approximately 44,000 cubic yards of sediment, treated more than 105 million gallons of water and installed approximately 17,000 cubic yards of engineered, clean river bottom cover.

The end result: improved water quality for public health, recreation, and fish and wildlife habitat.

“Revitalizing our rivers, like our neighborhoods, is a team effort,” said Jim Plaisted, executive director — Historic Third Ward Association. “The We Energies Third Ward Milwaukee River remediation project proves that persistence and partnerships among our civic organizations, businesses, agencies and stakeholders is the pathway to success.”

“We are pleased to support this historic effort to clean up the Milwaukee Estuary. Our work to remediate nearly 44,000 cubic yards of impacted sediment from the bottom of the Milwaukee River is an important first step in restoring our waterways,” said Liz Stueck-Mullane, vice president environmental — WEC Energy Group, the parent company of We Energies. “This coalition is making a positive impact, and our participation is a part of our commitment to creating a bright, sustainable future.”

This project is the start of a larger effort to restore the broader Milwaukee Estuary Area of Concern (AOC).

“The completion of the Third Ward Milwaukee River project will help build momentum, so that restoring the entire Milwaukee Estuary AOC is closer to becoming a reality,” said Cheryl Nenn, riverkeeper — Milwaukee Riverkeeper.

For more information on upcoming projects, go to the Waterway Restoration Partnership website.