ALBANY, N.Y. (WWTI) — A new legal requirement to combat invasive species will go into effect this week.

Through recent changes to New York’s Environmental Conservation Law, motorized boaters in Adirondacks waters will be required by law to obtain certification that they have inspected and removed aquatic invasive species before launching.

Watercraft users can obtain inspection certificates from a boat steward at aquatic invasive species inspection stations adjacent to public water bodies. Boat stewards will be stationed at popular boat launched across the Adirondack region and can be identified using their blue vests.

For an alternate option, boaters can also follow Clean, Drain, Dry steps on their own and complete a self-issued certificate on the DEC’s website before launching.

This applies to all water in and immediately adjacent to the Adirondack Forest Preserve. According to a map provided by the DEC, this includes some waters in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties.

According to DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos, these new efforts will help prevent the spread of potentially harmful aquatic invasive species in the Adirondack Park.

“Aquatic invasive species like hydrilla, the round goby fish, and zebra mussels are detrimental to the health of our lakes and rivers,” Commissioner Seggos said in a press release. “Our boat stewards are on the front lines, protecting our waters from invasive pests on boats and gear, and last year successfully intercepted more than 14,000 plants and animals that could have started new infestations. To protect pristine waterbodies in the Adirondacks, all motorized watercraft operators are now required to obtain Clean, Drain, Dry certification before they launch.”

New legal requirements regarding invasive species inspections will go into effect across New York on Wednesday, June 8, 2022.