About EMMA

Our Mission

To develop a regionally-coordinated ecological monitoring network that informs sustainable management practices and natural resource conservation through scientific research while engaging the public in environmental protection.

Conservation reflects the many values people place on the environment. Whether protecting the presence of shade trees, preserving biodiversity, or provisioning clean water, conservation is at the core of maintained environmental conditions. Ecological conservation requires multiple partners, including government officials, researchers, and non-profit professionals. These affiliates come together as partners to guide and protect environmental resources.

The Environmental Monitoring and Management Alliance (EMMA) is the embodiment of such unique partnerships. Centered in the Hudson Valley, we bring together organizations and individuals to both protect ecological systems and develop sustainable land management and stewardship practices.

Who We Are​

Founded by Teatown Lake Reservation in 2013, EMMA currently consists of nine member organizations dedicated to research, education, ecological and environmental science and conservation of the natural areas that make up their preserves. All member organizations have similar missions, but each has autonomous governance and oversight. EMMA is part of a larger program for each organization represented in the EMMA network.

Each member organization is located at a site that is a large landholding, part or all of which is maintained as uninhabited forests or fields. The EMMA sites represent a wide range of management strategies for differing landscape and vegetation types. 

The sites range from the urban New York Botanical Garden in the metropolis of New York City to the 2000+ acre Huyck Preserve & Biological Research Station in the rural area southwest of Albany, representing urban-rural and latitudinal gradients. EMMA is centered in the Hudson Valley, but works with preserves beyond the Hudson Valley that share in our priorities and meet the requirements for membership.

We Envision​

  • A vibrant and connected community of resource managers, researchers, and educators that promotes sharing of expertise and resources and streamlines environmental work in the region
  • A regional monitoring network that facilitates environmental research and effective, nimble land management programs
  • An environmentally literate and empowered public that shares in the responsibility of protecting our environment and supports the work of our organizations

Our Timeline

2012

New York State Conservation Partnership Program grant awarded to Teatown to found EMMA.

2012
2013

EMMA launches a study of the impact of deer overbrowse on sapling regeneration in forests.

2013
2013

EMMA launches a study of the impact of deer overbrowse on sapling regeneration in forests.

2013
2014

EMMA launches our phenology program in partnership with the New York Phenology Project.

2014
January 2015
Funding from the Leona B. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust helps EMMA develop coordination and offices at the Vassar Barns.
January 2015
September 2015

EMMA Coordinator and Post-Baccalaureate Fellow join EMMA team.

September 2015
March 2016

Weather stations, camera trap projects and education programs thanks to an Land Trust Alliance grant awarded to Teatown Lake Reservation.

March 2016
March 2016

EMMA partners with the Forest Ecosystem Monitoring Cooperative (FEMC) for data management.

March 2016
May-August 2016

Vegetation Mapping Pilot Project at Vassar.

May-August 2016
October 2016

Strategic Plan completed.

October 2016
October 2016

Assessing Deer Populations with Camera Traps Workshop hosted by EMMA.

October 2016
February 2017

First annual report completed

February 2017
February 2017

EMMA launches long-term monitoring study of wildlife using camera traps.

February 2017
Spring 2017

EMMA internship program launched at Vassar College

Spring 2017
Summer 2017

Vegetation Mapping Pilot Project completed at Vassar.

Summer 2017
Summer 2017

EMMA pilots a method to survey pollinators at Vassar.

Summer 2017
Summer 2017

EMMA creates an inventory of nectar sources for pollinators at Vassar.

Summer 2017

Photos on this website provided by Ellie Opdahl, Lindsay Charlop, Jamie Deppen, Karl Rabe, Jen Rubbo, Vicky Kelly, Rebecca Policello, Austin Schatz, Stephen Kovari, Maria Garcia and others.