Our Initiatives: Conservation

 AMC Intervenes on NECEC

The Appalachian Mountain Club has officially been designated an intervenor opposing the plan to build a 145-mile, above-ground transmission line from Quebec to Massachusetts, crossing through Maine – a project known as the New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC). Of this stretch, 53 miles would require a new, 150-foot wide corridor to be cut through the undeveloped forest of western Maine, including a crossing over the Kennebec Gorge. The project is intended to supply Quebec hydropower to Massachusetts in an attempt to meet the latter's renewable energy goals.

 Invasive Species Removal

If all plants are not weeds, and not all weeds are invasive, how do you know which plants don't belong in our local outdoor spaces? How can we tell a "good" weed from a "bad" one?

 Leave No Trace

Since 1999, AMC has been a provider of the Leave No Trace education programs, designed by the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics as a way to limit the human impact of outdoor recreation on natural spaces.

 Natural & Cultural Resources Along the Appalachian Trail

The 250,000-acre corridor of the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) and its surrounding landscape are rich in natural and cultural resources. Running primarily along the Appalachian highlands, Trail lands protect headwater streams for major East Coast watersheds. The Western MA A.T. Management Committee runs a robust program to catalog, monitor, and manage natural and cultural resources on A.T. trail lands in Massachusetts.

 Net Zero No Later Than 2050

In keeping with the scientific consensus on global warming and the latest recommendation from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in 2019, AMC adopted a goal of achieving 'net zero' greenhouse gas emissions no later than 2050, with a goal of 45 percent reduction from 2010 levels by 2030. To meet these ambitious climate targets, AMC has developed a Net Zero Strategic Plan – a roadmap that sets forth our strategic vision for the production, consumption, and conservation of energy at AMC facilities and from our operations.

 Old Growth Forest Protection

Now is our chance to save the remaining old growth forests in Massachusetts. A bill to protect old growth forests on state lands is on the move in our state legislature.

 Pit Privy Replacements

Improper disposal of human waste at heavily-used overnight sites causes pollution of soil, groundwater and surface water and degrades the experience of backcountry users. Our chapter's trail management committees are working to improve waste disposal facilities on the trail systems we oversee by replacing environmentally-unfriendly pit privies with moldering privies.

 Protection Strategies for the NET

The New England National Scenic Trail (NET) was established as part of the National Park Service's (NPS) National Trails System (NTS) in 2009 through an amendment to the National Trails System Act (NTSA) which establishes the nation's National Scenic and Historic Trails (NSHTs). The NET is a 235-mile trail that traverses southern New England from Long Island Sound in Connecticut to the Massachusetts-New Hampshire border.

 Sustainability in the Tyringham Valley

The A.T. Committee's Tyringham Valley Project will foster the AMC's goal of adapting to climate change while protecting the wide variety of local plant life, including several rare plant species and a key species threatened by an invasive insect, and minimizing our impact on the wildlife that inhabit the area. We will be doing all this while still providing public access to the remaining wild places in our region, including adding handicapped access to a scenic open area and wetland.

 Westfield River Waterfront Cleanup

In recent years, the Western MA Chapter's Conservation Committee has collaborated with the Westfield River Watershed Association (WRWA) in their twice-yearly waterfront cleanup events. Led by AMC's Heather Wyman (a WRWA board member), we coordinate cleanup efforts in the area of the West Springfield levee in West Springfield, MA.
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