This legislation gives the Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission (“the Commission”) the much-needed authority to purchase land for the purposes of protecting and managing the Pine Bush.
The Albany Pine Bush Preserve (“the Preserve”), located in New York’s Capital Region, is one of the largest inland Pine Barrens in the world, spanning 3,200 acres. The Pine Barrens is a globally rare ecosystem that is home to endangered species, like the Karner Blue butterfly which relies upon the wild lupine that grows in Pine Barrens ecosystems.
The continued protection of the Pine Barrens is necessary for the survival of the Karner Blue butterfly. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, land development, and consequent loss of habitat, is one of the greatest threats to the Karner Blue butterfly.
The area near the Albany Pine Bush has faced rapid suburbanization, which is why it is necessary to enable the Commission to have the ability to purchase high conservation-value land that would further protect the Pine Barrens and the wildlife that calls it home. A National Natural Landmark, the Preserve is a tremendous cultural and environmental asset to New York State – this bill is essential for its continued growth and protection.
This bill amends the environmental conservation law to give the Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission authority to purchase land.