Pilot Project for Climate Change Adaptation in Red Hook, NY
Red Hook Estuary Habitat
Red Hook, NY
AKRF, working in collaboration with Cornell University and the Town of Red Hook, NY, developed a conservation planning framework for adapting to climate change by enhancing protection of intact connected natural areas.
The Town, along with its associated Villages of Red Hook and Tivoli, was selected by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Hudson River Estuary Program to participate in this pilot project and stakeholder outreach program. The collaborative process included application of a Cornell University Geographic Information System (GIS) model to the Town to identify biological landscape connections within high-integrity forests, streams, and wetlands. These landscape connections are potential pathways of species migration and shifts in vegetative communities in response to climate change.
Together with GREENPLAN, Inc., AKRF led a collaborative stakeholder engagement process aimed at identifying near-, mid-, and long-term local actions and land use tools that can be used to preserve habitat connections. As part of that process, AKRF performed GIS analyses to identify what portions of the Town and its habitat linkages were already protected through conservation easements, zoning, municipal ownership, or natural features that restrict development.
AKRF’s final report, which used the results of the Cornell GIS model along with the recommendations of the stakeholders and the GIS analyses, provides a model for other local communities within the Estuary region seeking to support local resiliency and habitat protection objectives.