Take Action: Speak Up for Follensby Pond!

Our mission is to speak up for the wildest places in the Adirondack Park. Sometimes that requires patience, as we await an opportunity for public comment on an issue that matters greatly to us. But sometimes that wait becomes interminable, and we therefore must create our own opportunity for comment!

Follensby Pond is one such instance. It is our understanding that Albany is currently negotiating with The Nature Conservancy about the future of this 14,600-acre tract southeast of Tupper Lake, but that acquisition for the Forest Preserve might not be an option. If these reports are accurate, then we think this is a disturbing lack of faith on the part of the Hochul administration in the value of “forever wild.”

You can read our full view here, but the bottom line is that we think Follensby is a critical addition to the Forest Preserve. Not only does it feature a 970-acre lake with a significant historical value and a pristine fishery, but it fills a gap between the Saranac Lakes Wild Forest, the Sargent Ponds Wild Forest, and the High Peaks Wilderness, including 10 miles of frontage along a remote section of the Raquette River.

Therefore now is a key moment to try an influence Albany’s thinking on this matter. Follensby Pond requires top-level protection, and the constitutionally-enshrined Forest Preserve is the best level of protection available anywhere.

Join us in a call-in campaign this month to remind Governor Hochul just how much New Yorkers value the Forest Preserve and want to see Follensby protected for future generations.

What Can You Do?

To make a difference, we must go straight to the top, since land acquisition in the Adirondack Park is an executive function. From 9 AM to 5 PM on business days, call the Executive Chamber at:

1 518 474 8390

An aide to the governor will answer the phone and record your message on behalf of the governor. Be respectful, but speak your mind! Tell the aide (in a few brief words) why you love the Adirondacks – but more importantly, be sure to mention these key points:

  • “I think acquiring the Follensby Pond Tract in Franklin County is one of the most important conservation actions New York State can take in 2022.”
  • “I think these land and waters should be added to the Forest Preserve, one of the best-protected parklands in the world, without reservation or hesitation.”
  • “I think managing the land’s unique natural and cultural features is of upmost importance, and can be achieved through adaptive management – a transparent and data-driven process that has been used successfully elsewhere in the United States.”
  • “It matters to me that the acquisition process be done right, in a way that trusts the proven strengths of Article XIV of the state’s constitution, and which also arms state land managers with the tools and resources to preserve the tract’s entire community of life.”

Can I Send an Email Instead?

If speaking is not your forte, there is also an alternative method for leaving your comments in writing. While no public-facing email address is available, there is a Governor Contact Form available online. Here you can provide your contact information and leave your written message. If you are not sure what to say, the bullet points above will get you started.

Stay Informed – Sign Up for Updates!

Adirondack Wilderness Advocates keeps a close eye on activities related to New York’s wilderness areas. When necessary, we ask you to join us in speaking on behalf of our wildest places. To keep informed of future actions like this one, please sign up to our mailing list. You can be assured that we will only use this information to notify you of wilderness-related news and events.

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