Sustainable Forest Management

Healthy Forests Foster Clean Drinking Water

The City of Albany's drinking water reservoirs are surrounded by about 5,000 acres of forest that work to filter surface and groundwater and improve water quality.

A creek with terraced stone sides in a forestTo protect these lands, the Albany Water Board has joined The Nature Conservancy's Working Woodlands Program, a program that will preserve forest land and generate revenue by marketing carbon credits to a voluntary carbon market.

Through this program, the City will improve forest health, protect water resources, and create new revenue to maintain these benefits for people and nature into the future.

About the Working Woodlands Program

People in the forest with gear and measurement toolsAn acre of mature forest can capture a ton of carbon ever year, and protecting land and forests are among the cheapest and most effective ways to store carbon and help combat climate change.

Visit The Nature Conservancy's Working Woodlands page to learn more.

Forest Management Plan

As part of the program, The Nature Conservancy conducted a forest and carbon inventory and prepared a ten-year Forest Management Plan to guarantee sustainable management of the forestlands. This is the first comprehensive Forest Management Plan to be implemented in the history of the Water Department.

View the Forest Management Plan (PDF) to learn more.

Conservation Easement

Working Woodlands MapAs outlined in the Management Plan, the Albany Water Board has entered into a Conservation Easement with the non-profit Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy.

The Conservation Easement is a legal agreement which restricts future development of the forestlands. Having this agreement in place indefinitely preserves these natural resources and protects the water supply for the City of Albany.