Albany, NY (May 24, 2022)— The Open Space Institute applauded the New York State Senate’s approval today of critical legislation aimed at establishing a long-term blueprint for land protection in New York State. Sponsored by Senator Todd Kaminsky (D-Long Island) and referred to as the “30x30” bill, the measure calls for New York State to set a strategic goal to conserve 30 percent of the state’s land and inland waters by the year 2030. The measure (S.6191a/A.5390b) passed the state Assembly on April 27.
“Thanks to the strong leadership of the bill’s sponsors, Assemblywoman Pat Fahy and Senator Todd Kaminsky, the 30x30 land protection bill is one step closer to becoming law,” said Kim Elliman, president and CEO of the Open Space Institute. “This important legislation acknowledges that strategic land conservation is a critical tool and a natural solution to protect vital water sources, provide critical recreational opportunities, save habitat for wildlife, and mitigate the worst effects of climate change.”
With the U.S. losing a football field of land to development every 30 seconds, protecting 30 percent of the nation’s land, waters, and ocean is the bare minimum needed to save nature and buffer against the worst impacts of climate change.
Under the bill, New York State agencies would be required to identify land available for conservation, prioritizing land to promote biodiversity, preserve open space, and protect green space in urban areas. The measure also ensures that the conservation plan consider the needs of environmental justice communities.
Having passed the Assembly and the Senate, the bill will be sent to Governor Kathy Hochul for consideration.
“This is an extraordinarily significant step forward for land conservation in New York State,” said Elliman. “We commend all the legislators who voted to pass this forward-thinking measure, and urge the governor to sign it into law when it arrives on her desk.”