Public comments accepted through March 4
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos recently announced the release of the 10-year update to the strategic plan for state forest management. The draft plan is available for public comment through March 4, and will help guide the management of all state forests and the development of state forest unit management plans.
“This 10-year update to the strategic plan for state forest management builds on New York’s efforts to sustainably manage the more than 807,000 acres of state forests under DEC’s stewardship, while providing opportunities for recreation, economic benefits for local communities, and protection for sensitive wildlife habitats,” Seggos said. “Ensuring New York’s forests remain strong in the face of our changing climate was a critical consideration when developing this update, and I encourage New Yorkers to review and weigh in on the plan.”
The strategic plan for state forest management was originally drafted by DEC’s division of lands and forests in 2010, as part of the process for certifying New York state’s forests under the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and Forest Stewardship Council standards. The plan is updated every decade, and is considered a best management practice among natural resource management organizations, serving as a document to guide forest management.
In addition to guiding management decisions on state forests, the plan serves as the General Environmental Impact Statement (GEIS) for work done on state forests, multiple use areas, and unique areas. The GEIS satisfies the requirements of the State Environmental Quality Review Act to ensure no negative environmental impacts occur as a result of DEC management actions.
A presentation with more information about the draft plan is available on the SPSFM webpage. Comments can be submitted by mail to DEC’s Bureau of Forest Resource Management, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233, or by email to [email protected] through March 4.