Conservation Archive


Conservation Report

April, 2009

Vice-Chair, Conservation: Peter O'Shea, 315-848-2178


  1. The BION PROJECT this concentrated animal feed operation appears stalled at this time due to current economic conditions. A senior executive of Bion stated that their interest will resume when fiscal conditions improve.

  2. ADIRONDACK CLUB AND RESORT Mediation has not occurred since last summer but the developer seems to go forward with a slightly revised proposal that as of this writing has not been officially put forth. Reports circulating state that the proposed Great Camp lots and the tax breaks for the buyers of the second homes still remain. All the environmental groups remain implacably opposed to this project as presently proposed.

  3. COMMERCIAL WIND FARMS Some of the wind companies are struggling right now, and tax breaks could be an issue. Gov. Paterson is committed to the concept of renewable energy as also is the new federal government. DEC commissioner Peter Grannis has ordered a study to evaluate the potential impact of commercial wind farms on bird and bat populations in New York State. The Nature Conservancy recently testified before a local committee and requested restrictions on a proposed wind power project that would be adjacent to their 13,000-acre preserve on the Tug Hill Plateau. Among the restrictions requested by the Nature Conservany were wide buffer zones around the proposed project and less activity during periods of bird and bat migration.

  4. OPEN SPACE PLAN At the most recent DEC Region 6 Open Space meeting, participants were told that DEC was going to explore other options to preserve open space besides traditional fee purchases and conservation easements, as they expect less funding to be available in the near future. This highlights the importance of local land trusts, such as the recently-formed St. Lawrence Land Trust, in preserving open space in our area.

    Once the negotiations for current projects are completed, there will probably be little or no funding for any new projects in our area. DEC commissioner Grannis stated recently that the Finch Pruyn lands and the Follensby Pond tract in Region 5 will be acquired by New York State. He did not mention any of the parcels currently being negotiated in our region (Region 6). Environmental groups are lobbying for state purchase in fee and easement of the following lands:
    1. Portaferry Boy Scout Camp;
    2. Remaining Lassiter lands;
    3. Clerical Medical property.
    If these lands are to be protected for posterity then continual pressure must be exerted on the Governor and legislature to purchase these three parcels.