Adirondack Council | WAMC

Adirondack Council

2020 State of the Park preview
Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council publishes an annual report analyzing legislation and actions that have impacted the 6 million acre Adirondack Park over the past year. The organization has just released a preview of the upcoming State of the Park review, out next week. Council Executive Director Willie Janeway tells WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley it focuses on positive developments, and focuses on the park as a “A Landscape of Hope” to reflect its importance during the pandemic.

Earth Day 2020 logo
Just Green Partnership

This week was the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. Some environmental advocates in New York took the opportunity to praise the progress that has been made in New York state.  But others took a broader assessment and fear any progress over the past five decades is being dismantled by the Trump Administration.

Environmental advocacy groups are seeking to join a lawsuit several states have filed against the Environmental Protection Agency.

State of the Park 2019-2020 cover
Photo by Nancie Battaglia / Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council issues an annual report assessing the oversight by government agencies, localities and others of the 6 million acre Adirondack Park. This year’s just released State of the Park report, “Challenged By Success,” finds that the rising popularity of the region is also highlighting challenges.  Council Executive Director Willie Janeway and spokesman John Sheehan spoke about the report with WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley.  Janeway says the surge in the Adirondack’s popularity caught many by surprise and is spotlighting the need to better manage the Forest Preserve.

Stop the Invasion logo
Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program

The New York state legislature has been working to address a number of bills as the session winds to a close this week. Lawmakers recently passed a measure to extend an invasive species law. Advocates were hoping the measure would be made permanent, but say the year extension will give them time to craft a stronger law.

John Sheehan
Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council is applauding the New York state Department of Environmental Conservation’s recent announcement that it will implement a regulation in early June that sets strict carbon dioxide emissions limits on coal-fired power plants operating in the state.  In this second part of our interview, Council Spokesman John Sheehan tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley they expect the state’s move will eliminate all coal-fired power generation in the state by the end of 2020.

John Sheehan
Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council is among the largest advocacy organizations lobbying for the environmental stability of the 6 million-acre Adirondack Park in northern New York. With its goal to “ensure the ecological integrity and wild character” of the region, its representatives track legislation at the state capitol in Albany. Council Spokesman John Sheehan tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley there are a number of issues the group is working on. In the first part of our conversation with Sheehan, he notes it’s a long list for the legislature to address before the session ends next month.

Generic file photo of ATV riders
Pixabay/Public Domain

The Adirondack Council issued a report this week outlining the damage occurring from inappropriate ATV use on public lands.  It calls for new legislation, including a statutory ban, on recreational ATV use in the Adirondack Park.

John Sheehan
Adirondack Council

An update now to a story we’ve been following for months: rail cars that were being stored in northern New York.
The Adirondack Council had been critical of the company storing tankers on railroad tracks in the Adirondacks. Iowa Pacific has removed the rail cars and New York state is now petitioning the federal Surface Transportation Board to declare the line abandoned.  The Council recently penned a letter supporting the state effort. Adirondack Council Spokesman John Sheehan says it’s important that people understand the petition would not result in the removal of the tracks.

State of the Park cover
Paddlers on Boreas Ponds - Photo by Nancie Battaglia / Adirondack Council

Every year the Adirondack Council publishes its analysis of actions by the governor, legislature, courts, state attorney general, state agencies, local governments and federal policies that affected the 6 million-acre park. The latest State of the Park report came out this morning.

This week, the Environmental Protection Agency released its proposed Affordable Clean Energy, or ACE, rule which would replace the Obama era Clean Power Plan.  The move is coming under fire from environmental groups in our region, who believe it would mean more pollution and acid rain deposition in the Adirondacks.

The state capitol in Albany
Dave Lucas / WAMC

Conservation advocates say the New York state legislature had few accomplishments over the course of this year’s session — which ended last week — for the Adirondacks and the state’s environment.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Adirondack Council is a key advocate before the New York state legislature and state agencies to ensure the protection of the wilderness and communities of the 6 million-acre Adirondack Park.  Among the current issues of current concern is a plan by the Adirondack Park Agency and the Department of Environmental Conservation to conduct joint public meetings regarding the Unit Management Plans for the High Peaks Wilderness and the Vanderwhacker Mountain Wild Forest areas.  Council Spokesman John Sheehan says while his organization had encouraged joint meetings for non-controversial items, this is not what they intended.

Line of oil tankers along the Boreas River
Brendan Wiltse Photography / Adirondack Council

Over the course of the year, controversy has flared over Iowa Pacific Railway and its subsidiary the Saratoga North Creek Railroad’s storage of rail cars on sidings in the Adirondacks.  The Adirondack Council is now asking billionaire philanthropist Warren Buffett to intervene.

rail tanker cars
Protect the Adirondacks

The Saratoga and North Creek Railroad has brought the first tanker cars it plans to park on a siding in the Adirondacks.  Environmental groups opposing the plan got a boost this week when Governor Andrew Cuomo spoke against the idea.

Old railroad cars on tracks outside of North Creek
Protect the Adirondacks

Some Adirondack environmental organizations are raising concerns over a plan by a railroad to store unused rail cars along tracks it leases in Warren Country.  The environmentalists say leaving the boxcars would degrade the wilderness stability and beauty of the Adirondacks.

The nine Mid-Atlantic and New England states that participate in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative have agreed to a draft proposal that will further reduce power plant carbon emissions under the regional environmental pact.

Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council announced Monday that it was able to obtain more carbon allowances during the latest Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative auction.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

A number of issues affecting the Adirondacks are pending in New York state agencies. Other will be affected by the recently passed budget.  Environmental and municipal advocates discuss key priorities they say need to be addressed.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Every 20 years, New Yorkers are given the opportunity for a constitutional convention. A referendum will be on the ballot in November asking voters if one should be held.  Groups are lining up on each side.  Several environmental organizations are opposed to the convention because they are concerned that a key protection for the Adirondacks and Catskills could be eliminated.

State of the Park 2016 cover
Photo by Carl Heilman II of Boreas Ponds and the High Peaks Wilderness / Adirondack Council

An annual report assessing policy affecting the Adirondack Park has just been issued by the Adirondack Council.  This year it’s largely positive, driven by the state’s acquisition of wilderness lands and investment in the Environmental Protection Fund.

Adirondacks Elk Lake Dix Mountain
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Last week, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo finalized the largest Adirondack land acquisition by the state in 100 years.  The Boreas Ponds property must now be classified by the Adirondack Park Agency.  As the governor signed the documents,  a coalition of environmental groups released a report that finds lands designated wilderness are an economic driver for the Park.  But critics say the report is too limited and does not assess the variety of factors that affect the region’s economy. 

New York state is again the beneficiary of billions of dollars in financial settlement money and environmental groups say a good chunk of it should go toward the state's aging water and sewer systems.

Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council has released its annual report assessing actions by governmental leaders and agencies toward the Adirondack Park.

Environmental groups say New York needs to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to fix its aging water and sewer systems.

With Governor Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers haggling over the budget this month, several advocacy groups are highlighting their wish lists.

A coalition including Environmental Advocates, Riverkeeper, the New York League of Conservation Voters  and the Adirondack Council is pushing for lawmakers to earmark $800 million from the state’s $5 billion bank settlement windfall for various clean water projects around the state.

Adirondack Council

In late January, the New York State Legislature began hearings reviewing Governor Cuomo's proposed budget. The first was on environmental funding.
The Adirondack Council was among the groups that testified. Today, Executive Director Willie Janeway talks with WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley about their testimony and legislative issues affecting the Adirondacks.

Adirondack Council

The Adirondack Council has issued its annual State of the Park report. It finds progress in land acquisition and state policies. But it also determined that more needs to be accomplished in order to protect the lands and communities of the region.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Two of the six amendments on Tuesday’s ballot deal with land swaps in New York’s Adirondack Park. One of the proposals has split environmental groups.

Adirondack Council/Carl Heilman

The Adirondack Council has released its annual State of the Park report and this year’s assessment shows increased collaborations and progress on issues.

National Parks Service

The U.S. Supreme Court will review an appeals court ruling that overturned the Environmental Protection Agency's Cross-State Air Pollution Rule. Two Adirondack environmental groups say the move is crucial for the long-term health of the region’s ecosystem.