Expand Education, Outreach
We will increase awareness of the Plateau's valuable benefits by expanding outreach and education to community members and local municipalities. Landowners will be provided with opportunities to gain knowledge of sustainable forest management practices. Educational events for children will teach them about unique and natural resources found on the Plateau. We will enhance and expand our comprehensive resources available for local municipalities.
Establish the Plateau as a
We will develop a Trail Vision Plan that will establish the Plateau as a recreational destination with a regional trail network, connecting existing trails on the Plateau and other trails throughout Rensselaer County. Engaging the community, we will make the Plateau a more accessible resource for the public by developing new trails for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, horseback riding, hiking, bird watching, and many other family activities.
Establish a Community Forest
for the People
We will establish a Community Forest that will provide educational, recreational, environmental, and economic benefits to the local and greater Rensselaer Plateau community, such as: training programs for sustainable forest management, economic development opportunities through tourism & the local forest products industry, child and adult educational programs, and publicly accessible trails. As a demonstration forest, the community will benefit from learning about best practices for stewardship and conservation.
We recognize that, as we pursue new opportunities, we must invest in a strong infrastructure. Paid staffing, print materials, and an increased schedule of activities require funding. We will generate the necessary funds to support RPA staff and operations, and to purchase and establish the Community Forest.
Conserve Unbroken Forests & Ecologically Important Areas
Through an alliance of privately and publicly protected land we aim to conserve 18,000 acres by 2018. We will use land donations, conservation easements, and the purchase of development rights to achieve this objective. This overarching goal will ensure that the Plateau's clean air, fresh water, unique wildlife habitat and recreational areas continue to benefit current and future generations.