New York City’s Department of Environmental Conservation recently purchased 485 ha (1,200 ac) of land within the Catskill Mountains to protect the New York City watershed. The purchase cost the city $5.6 million from its Environmental Protection Fund. The land originally was slated for a ski resort, time shares, a golf course, and other development. However, the purchase downscaled the development and will help minimize stormwater runoff into the Ashokan Reservoir. The purchase is part of a 1997 agreement between New York City and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to protect the watershed rather than use filtration to ensure the safety of drinking water. Since 1997, the city has protected more than 48,000 ha (19,000 ac) of watershed-sensitive land. Read more.