With strong partner organizations, collaboration with elected/appointed government officials and citizen participation, the Council successfully advocates for policies and funding that benefit the environment and communities of the Adirondack Park.

2019-2020 Highlights and Progress toward Council 2014-2020 strategic objectives achieved with partners, grassroots advocacy, and generous donor support.

2019-2020 Accomplishments

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Wilderness: Ensuring the wild character and ecological integrity of the Adirondack Park and Forest Preserve.

  • To preserve Wilderness for current and future generations, to #KeepItWild and address overuse,
    the state is improving visitor management (more education, better parking, sustainable trails, etc).
  • The Governor recognized overuse threatens wilderness and use limits are sometimes needed.
  • The state established the Adirondack High Peaks Wilderness Overuse Advisory group (including
    the Adirondack Council) that developed recommendations for access that address overuse.
  • The Council hired the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics to assess overuse and visitor
    education in the Adirondacks. 52 management recommendations were embraced by the state.

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Vibrant Communities: Fostering a more resilient, sustainable Adirondack Park with vibrant communities.

  • In the 2020 budget, Governor Cuomo and the legislature approved an historic $3 billion Restore
    Mother Nature Bond Act, another $1 billion for community clean water infrastructure, plus a $300 million Environmental Protection Fund (EPF). The EPF includes $2 million for community smart growth and $36 million for state land Stewardship with $10 million dedicated for the Forest Preserve and wilderness, infrastructure, trail maintenance and redesign, and visitor education.

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Water & Air: Fighting for clean water and clean air; combating invasive species and climate change.

  • Last year’s ambitious and historic climate change legislation is being implemented and state agencies and panels have elevated climate considerations in state agency decision making.
  • Bi-partisan legislation is pending that would establish an Adirondack Road Salt Task Force to
    change how we manage our roadways to ensure safety and clean water.
  • The Council’s Clean Water Initiative has helped communities secure over $58 million for clean
    water infrastructure grants in the Adirondacks since 2015.
  • The Council secured a one-year renewal of the state invasive species transport law, while also
    securing policymakers’ commitments to strengthen protections next year.
  • The Council joined with partners to fight U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rollbacks of air
    pollution regulations in court.

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Farms and Forests: Preserving open space and supporting working forests and farms

  • The Council’s Essex Farm Institute is helping improve local food distribution during the pandemic.
  • The Council granted $37,492 to help farmers combat climate change and provide healthy food.
  • Council advocates promoted public and private Park forest land as the state’s greatest carbon sink.

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Leadership and Government: Leading, expanding and diversifying the Park’s constituency.

  • Secured $250,000 in state funds for the Adirondack Diversity Initiative at ANCA to staff and
    organize a coalition of organizations working to make the Adirondacks more welcoming to all.
  • Advocacy with partners and elected officials led to approval of an updated and improved slate of new and returning Adirondack Park Agency board members with diverse, balanced and relevant expertise, including land use, development, environmental law and conservation science.
  • Expanded by 14% the constituency engaged with the Adirondack Council on behalf of the
    Adirondacks. Members and online advocates now number 98,000 strong, and growing.

During the ongoing health, economic, and social crisis, we celebrate supporters and partners for the
extraordinary effort and commitment to the shared work of preserving the water, wilderness and people of the Adirondacks. Together we will get through these challenging times and build back better for all.

19-20 Accomplishments

19-20 Accomplishments

Achieved with partners, grassroots advocacy,
and YOUR support! 

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