Long Island Pine Barrens Society:

Controversy and progress

Long Island Pine Barrens Society

The Rauch Foundation believes that making investments in proven, effective environmental leadership is key to protecting our waterways and Long Island’s sole source of drinking water, its aquifer.

Recognizing the role played by the Long Island Pine Barrens Society and its executive director, Dick Amper, in the creation of the Long Island Pine Barrens Protection Act, the Foundation made several grants in support of the Society’s preservation work and its role in cleaning up contaminated land at Brookhaven National Laboratory.

These early grants proved highly successful. The Rauch Foundation’s relatively small investment in the Society’s Brookhaven National Laboratory work resulted in an accelerated cleanup process, helping both to protect Long Island’s groundwater and to save taxpayers millions of dollars by shortening the time of the cleanup work.

Passion and persistence are still needed

While many foundations limit the number of consecutive years they will invest in a particular organization, Rauch has maintained ongoing annual support for the Pine Barrens Society for nearly 20 years. And the investment has paid off. The Pine Barrens Society has played a pivotal role in helping to craft Long Island’s groundwater protection legacy.

Dick Amper is often viewed as a controversial figure on Long Island, but we believe his passion and voice are needed in order to achieve solutions.

In no small part because of the Pine Barrens Society, Long Island has expended nearly $2 billion to protect over 60,000 acres of environmentally sensitive lands that help to protect our drinking water.

This work is not done, however. Recent studies show that the quality of Long Island drinking water is steadily declining, despite prevention efforts. With support from Rauch, Pine Barrens will once again be leading the charge to ensure that our waters are protected for generations to come.

Read an interview with Dick Amper conducted as part of the Rockefeller Brothers investigation into the most effective environmental campaigns: businessethicsnetwork.org/downloads/RBFpromos/interviews.html