The FLLT completed three conservation easements this year that protect Six Mile Creek – a public drinking water source for Ithaca.
The first protects 171 forested acres with ponds and seasonal tributaries in Dryden, Tompkins County. The easement protects drinking water by prohibiting development on the property’s steep slopes which drain into the creek. While the easement was generously donated, the FLLT received a grant from the City of Ithaca’s Six Mile Creek Watershed Protection Fund to support this project.
The remaining two easements were completed in partnership with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and were funded in part through the state’s Water Quality Improvement Project (WQIP) Program. The first protects 13.5 acres with 1,100 feet of frontage on Six Mile Creek in Dryden. The FLLT is working with Tompkins County Soil and Water Conservation District (TCSWCD) to restore stream banks on the property to prevent runoff into the creek.
The third easement protects 126 acres with more than 6,200 feet of frontage on the creek in Caroline. The property features picturesque farmland as well as forests and wetlands that contribute to critical water protection, helping to slow runoff, filter and absorb pollutants, and reduce drinking water treatment costs. In addition to the WQIP grant, FLLT also received funding from the City of Ithaca and Tompkins County to provide long-term stewardship for this easement.