Bill Text: NY A05390 | 2021-2022 | General Assembly | Amended

NOTE: There are more recent revisions of this legislation. Read Latest Draft
Bill Title: Relates to setting a conservation goal for the state and including an effort to combat the biodiversity and climate crises in the state's land acquisition policy.

Spectrum: Moderate Partisan Bill (Democrat 78-12)

Status: (Engrossed) 2022-05-23 - RETURNED TO ASSEMBLY [A05390 Detail]

Download: New_York-2021-A05390-Amended.html

                STATE OF NEW YORK


                               2021-2022 Regular Sessions

                   IN ASSEMBLY

                                    February 16, 2021

        Introduced  by  M. of A. FAHY -- read once and referred to the Committee
          on Environmental Conservation -- committee discharged,  bill  amended,
          ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee

        AN  ACT  to  amend  the  environmental  conservation law, in relation to
          including efforts to combat the biodiversity and climate crises in the
          state's land acquisition policy

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section  1.  Section 49-0207 of the environmental conservation law, as
     2  added by chapter 146 of the laws of 1990, is amended to read as follows:
     3  § 49-0207. State land acquisition plan.
     4    1. It shall be the policy of the state to support  and  contribute  to
     5  national  efforts  to  conserve at least thirty percent of United States
     6  lands and inland waters and at least thirty  percent  of  United  States
     7  ocean  area  by  the  year  two  thousand thirty. The department and the
     8  office shall prepare a state land acquisition plan to guide selection of
     9  projects for state  acquisition  or  conservation  taking  into  account
    10  regional advisory committee priorities and the department's and office's
    11  assessment  of  need for land acquisition projects. Such plan shall also
    12  take into account the goal of the state to facilitate  the  conservation
    13  of  at  least  thirty  percent of land in New York state by the year two
    14  thousand thirty, in an effort to  combat  the  global  biodiversity  and
    15  climate  crises  and  contribute  to  the national goal. Such plan shall
    16  include an identification of:
    17    a. lands, by region and  category,  for  which  acquisition  or  other
    18  conservation is of a high priority in order to carry out the purposes of
    19  this title;
    20    b.  lands,  by  region,  having  statewide  or regional environmental,
    21  historic, cultural or recreational significance that are threatened with
    22  diminishment of resource value;

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 5390--A                          2

     1    c. the department's and office's priorities of categories of land,  by
     2  region, for future acquisition or other conservation; [and]
     3    d.  lands,  by  region,  having  statewide  or regional environmental,
     4  historic, cultural or recreational significance which should be  consid-
     5  ered for state acquisition or other conservation, but which do not qual-
     6  ify for acquisition under present law; and
     7    e.  strategies  and  a methodology to achieve the goal of the state to
     8  conserve at least thirty percent of land in New York state by  the  year
     9  two thousand thirty, including, but not limited to:
    10    (i)  safeguards  for  the state's economic and sustainability and food
    11  security;
    12    (ii) protections and restoration projects for biodiversity;
    13    (iii) enabling enduring conservation measures, to be  defined  in  the
    14  plan,  on  a  broad  range  of landscapes, including urban, suburban and
    15  rural natural areas, watersheds, and  working  lands,  urban  and  rural
    16  agricultural  lands,  and  resilient and connected lands, in partnership
    17  with land managers, farmers, and other stakeholder groups;
    18    (iv) building climate resilience, reducing risk from  extreme  climate
    19  events,  and  contributing  to  the  state's  effort to mitigate climate
    20  change; and
    21    (v) expanding access to nature and nature's benefits in communities in
    22  every region of the state, and expanding equitable  outdoor  access  and
    23  recreation.
    24    2.  Such  plan  shall  include consideration of the inventory prepared
    25  pursuant to section 49-0205 of this title and shall identify those areas
    26  within the state which are not adequately protected in such categories.
    27    3. In preparing such plan, the department and office shall:
    28    a. conduct one or more public hearings in  each  of  the  department's
    29  administrative regions.
    30    b. consult with:
    31    (i) the regional advisory committees;
    32    (ii)  officials of departments and agencies of the state having duties
    33  and  responsibilities  concerning  the  protection  of  open  space  and
    34  natural, environmental, historic, cultural or recreational resources;
    35    (iii) officials and representatives of local governments in the state;
    36  and
    37    (iv) persons, organizations and groups interested in the protection of
    38  open space and natural, environmental, historic, cultural or recreation-
    39  al resources of the state.
    40    c.  strategically prioritize investments in cooperative, high-priority
    41  actions that promote biodiversity protection, habitat restoration, wild-
    42  fire-resiliency, regenerative  agriculture,  sustainably  managed  land-
    43  scapes, watershed protection and other conservation outcomes.
    44    d.  implement  actions to increase the pace and scale of environmental
    45  conservation, restoration, and land management efforts  by  streamlining
    46  the  state's processes to approve and facilitate such efforts and reduc-
    47  ing the time it takes to complete projects.
    48    e. collaborate with federal and state research institutions to utilize
    49  innovative scientific observation technology, and with  tribal  partners
    50  to  incorporate tribal expertise and traditional ecological knowledge to
    51  better understand the state's biodiversity and threats to such biodiver-
    52  sity.
    53    f. include strategies to participate in regional, national, and inter-
    54  national efforts to advance biodiversity protection and help to  prevent
    55  extinctions across the planet.

        A. 5390--A                          3

     1    g.  request  and receive from any department, division, board, bureau,
     2  commission or any other agency of the state or any political subdivision
     3  thereof or any public authority such  assistance  and  data  as  may  be
     4  necessary to enable the department and office to carry out its responsi-
     5  bilities under this section.
     6    4.  The  department,  in  cooperation with any other state agencies it
     7  shall deem necessary, shall use existing authorities  and  resources  to
     8  identify  and  implement  near-term  and long-term actions to accelerate
     9  natural removal of carbon from the atmosphere and to build climate resi-
    10  lience in the state's forests, wetlands, watersheds, urban  greenspaces,
    11  agricultural  soils, and land conservation activities in ways that serve
    12  all communities, including  low-income,  disadvantaged,  and  vulnerable
    13  communities.
    14    5.  The  department  and  office  shall prepare a draft plan and shall
    15  propose, no later than [January thirty-first] February first,  [nineteen
    16  hundred  ninety-one] two thousand twenty-two, a schedule of public hear-
    17  ings thereon.
    18    [5.] 6. On or before [January thirty-first] February first,  [nineteen
    19  hundred  ninety-two]  two  thousand  twenty-three  and every three years
    20  thereafter, the department and office  shall  submit  the  plan  to  the
    21  governor,  the  majority  leader  of  the  senate and the speaker of the
    22  assembly. Upon approval by the governor such plan shall become  a  guide
    23  for the implementation of the acquisition programs of the department and
    24  office.
    25    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately.