Green protest planned for Adirondack Park Agency meeting

Environmental activists in the North Country are circulating an email trying to arrange a last-minute protest in Ray Brook tomorrow and Friday, as the Adirondack Park Agency meets to review the Big Tupper resort project.

A final decision on the project is expected in January.

The message was initially circulated by activist Richard Brummel December 9th, with an organizational meeting held at Clarkson University in Potsdam last night.

“I am reaching out to activists upstate to put together a last ditch demo or action to bring attention the very imminent approval of a disastrous new resort development in wilderness/woodland areas of the Adirondack Park,” Brummel writes.

His message continues as follows:

“Cuomo just stacked the Adirondack Park Agency with pro-development upstate Republican types. After SEVEN YEARS of meandering process the Agency will vote in JANUARY on the little-publicized private “Adirondack Club and Resort” project — a ski-golf-marina resort in a peaceful little small town.”

Brummel says one of his goals is to attract interest from downstate media.

Erin Corrigan, head of Clarkson’s Ecological Conservation Organization also circulated an email suggesting that the development is planned “in some designated wildereness areas in the Tupper Lake area of the park.”

Without a large amount of resistance the APA will let this wilderness be destroyed. We need as many people as possible to attend these demonstrations. We also need people to bombard the agency with letters and phone calls before they make their decision in January.”

Two points of factual clarification:

– If approved by the APA, the proposed development will not be built in a designated wilderness area, but on an area of privately owned land that has been logged for decades.

– Governor Andrew Cuomo recently made two appointments to the APA board, naming one new members to the panel and asking Lani Ulrich to serve as chair.  Both nominations were widely praised by environmental activists in the Park. (The newest APA board member chosen by Cuomo is a member of the Adirondack Mountain Club.)

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29 Comments on “Green protest planned for Adirondack Park Agency meeting”

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  1. Yeah, I just wish someone would publicize something about this little-publicized project! And peaceful, yes, bythejesus, that is the first word that comes to mind when I think of peaceful little Tupper Lake!

  2. Paul says:

    “little publicized”. This guy must be living in a cave!

  3. Bob Cat says:


  4. Erb says:

    Yeah, I got these emails as well. Does make you wonder where they’ve been for the past, oh, seven years. And where they’re getting their info.

  5. Paul says:

    I don’t think these kinds of protests are helpful. These arguments are on the table. The commissioners understand that many environmental groups are opposed to the project.

  6. Walker says:

    The “little publicized” bit is probably explained by “Brummel says one of his goals is to attract interest from downstate media.” How much coverage has this gotten “downstate”?

    And can anyone comment on the claim that “Cuomo just stacked the Adirondack Park Agency with pro-development upstate Republican types”?

    If he’s right, it’s probably Game Over. (Unless of course, the pro-ACR folks are right, and green groups are just using this as a fundraising tool.)

  7. Cathy Moore says:

    Apparently he should subscribe to the Adirondack Daily Enterprise to discover we have been reporting on this for over 7 years. We even can deliver to caves!

  8. Paul says:

    There is no upstate and downstate when it comes to information. I only spend part of my year in the Adirondacks these days and I have had no problem getting the info (thanks ADE, NCPR, Post Standard, Explorer, Almanack and others).

  9. Walker says:

    Paul, while I grant you that a Manhattanite can easily enough read the Daily Enterprise online as easily as can someone from Saranac Lake (or Singapore), still, I think it is just possible that fewer Manhattanites read the Enterprise every day than ought to.

  10. Matt says:

    Nonsense like this also does a disservice to those interested in conservation and appropriately scaled-development. It is also counter-productive to those who are responsible for reviewing these complicated projects and making them better.

  11. Gary says:

    Walker, I for one do not want the Manhattanites deciding our future.

  12. boris says:

    Not only is it not wilderness, it private land surrounded by private land and pretty far from the nearest “designated wilderness area”. I wonder if this was an intentional error or is this guy trying to get some well intentioned college students to support his cause by misinforming them.

    Those students should go and watch and may learn something. the APA’s public sausage processing meetings are a rare way to see open government decision making.

  13. boris says:

    brian, can you post more of the emails? Were there more glaring inaccuracies?

  14. Walker says:

    Gary, just over half of the state’s population lives within commuting distance of NYC.

  15. Alan Gregory says:

    Yes, everyone needs/deserves a good place in which to live, but where is it written that humans must take over all the time everywhere?

  16. Erin says:

    I really wish I had done a little more fact checking before I took Brummel at his word for this project being on State Wilderness land, not private. It still would be a shame to see more beautiful undeveloped land being developed but it would at least it wouldn’t be adding as much insult to the principles behind the Adirondack Park.
    My apologies for helping to circulate an email with inaccuracies, I was just reiterating the message in the email below mine.

    As a person who lived and worked in the park all last summer and spends a good portion of my time there I felt and still feel responsible to help preserve its integrity.

  17. Erin says:

    I think Brummel might have used the word ‘wilderness’ as just a general term, not realizing that to others it stands to classify a type of area within the park

  18. Paul says:

    “I think it is just possible that fewer Manhattanites read the Enterprise every day than ought to.”

    Walker, I am sure this is probably true. But if they feel uninformed it is their own fault.

    The guys was probably just using “wilderness” like as in the “wilds” of upstate NY. Not the official state designation Wilderness.

    Remember how some folks think. I heard a comment one time from Woody Allen. “I thought that the only thing that the woods were for was potpourri” !

  19. Paul says:

    Did they have the protest?

  20. Helene Weissman says:

    You all should know …… “the white man” won’t stop developing until he’s paved over the entire world!!!!!!!

  21. Tom says:

    Cathy Moore, Yeah the ADE has been reporting for 7 yrs or so and doing a P poore job of it. I wouldn’t be blowing my own horn if I were you.

  22. Walker says:

    Paul says: “But if [voters in Manhattan] feel uninformed it is their own fault.”

    Yes, but the uninformed voter is the devil’s playground, easily exploited by those with the means to do so. Doesn’t matter whose fault their ignorance is.

  23. Paul says:

    Walker, that is very true .

    “voter” or “potential protester”.

    This “protest” sounds like a good example of that.

  24. Erin,
    Does this phrase strike you as narrow-minded and unfair: “pro-development upstate Republican types”? Or does that seem just fine to you? Does the tone of Brummel’s email, and your own to a lesser extent, seem alarmist? Are you assuming that all local people are either pro-development or too ignorant or otherwise ineffective to manage land development issues in their own backyards, that the only effective “resistance” can come from those who aren’t “pro development upstate Republican types”? Does it strike you, on second reading, that the sort of assumptions you are making help to polarize the debate and make things worse?

  25. Peter Hahn says:

    This is hyperbole from a fund-raiser. not a big surprise.

  26. Erin says:

    yes I do agree some of the statements made by brummel were a little polarizing. that is one reason I wanted to help out, and make the argument not against the apa members and the communities and just help to ensure the environment was given priority. those are brummel’s words not mine. I don’t know enough about the make up of the APA members to criticize them, I would hope they are all looking to minimize environmental damage and to do what is best for the park and those who live and visit there.

    my big mistake was in stating the development was going to be on designated wilderness land and for that I apologize but i sent a message to everyone who had received my previous email correcting my mistake.

  27. Richard Brummel says:

    It’s nice to see the NCPR journalists getting out there to contact the subject of their reporting. That would be me. As for downstaters the Park was designated in 1973 as a state resource, subject to state-wide policy. But the locals still have managed to capture the process. And keep the outsiders quieted. Finally, there has not been a single person I have spoken with outside the Park who wanted to see a huge new development there, out of obvious environmental principles. The global environment is in crisis. Adding an energy intensive environmentally destructive new developement ANYWHERE is bad policy. There are other ways to help the Adirondacks without wrecking every conmmunity and turning them into tourist playgrounds like Placid, Lake George, and Old Forge. Let’s use our heads.

  28. Will, as usual, you are spot on. And Mr. Brummel, just f.y.i. – the Adirondack Park was established in 1892. Don’t expect anyone to take you seriously when you can’t even spit out one accurate fact.

  29. brian mann says:

    Richard – I had planned to interview you in Ray Brook.

    –Brian, NCPR

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