Pataki protects big swath of New York’s Adirondack Mountains

New York Gov. George Pataki (R) yesterday announced a deal whereby some 104,000 acres of land in the northeastern Adirondacks will be protected from development and opened up to public use — the third-largest land conservation deal in state history. The parcels of land lie on a contiguous swath of forest, which makes it particularly significant for conservation purposes, as it is a migration corridor for several large mammals and birds. Limited logging will continue, but development will cease, to the chagrin of some local residents. The eco-friendly Pataki, like his muscle-bound California counterpart, is widely viewed as positioning himself for a bigger, brighter political future — though the prospects for Republican moderates are, at this point, uncertain at best.