To secure the future of New York’s clean air and water, OSI and its coalition partners worked to shape, advance, and advocate for a $4.2 billion statewide environmental Bond Act, which was overwhelmingly approved by voters in November. The Bond Act will provide historic investments in clean air, clean water, and expanded access to the outdoors.
An effort to create the first publicly owned Community Forest in Saratoga County, New York made major headway this year as supporters raised funds for trails and other improvements. The OSI-supported Graphite Range Community Forest is home to lush, forested ravines carved by tumbling creeks, whose waters directly drain into the drinking water supply of the city of Saratoga Springs.
Within the Delaware River Watershed, the source of drinking water for 15 million people, OSI continued to protect forested acreage with the launch of a new loan program; and an ongoing OSI research effort reinforced the critical role that protected forests play in filtering pollutants and maintaining high-quality streams for clean water and wildlife. Both announcements mark the latest successes of the eight-year-old Delaware River Watershed Protection Fund, through which OSI has protected some 27,700 acres — including projects like Yards Creek Preserve.
Meanwhile, in Maine, Sebago Clean Waters marked a milestone in innovative efforts to tap forests for clean water with the acquisition of more than 12,000 acres. The coalition, partly founded by OSI, aims to protect the forested land that drains into Sebago Lake, the source of drinking water for one in six Maine residents.
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Year in Review 2022: Addressing Climate Change and Protecting Habitat
In 2022, OSI continued to amass an impressive suite of wins for climate and habitat connectivity in the face of the subdivisions, strip malls, and industrial sites that threaten natural areas in South Carolina and beyond.