The legislature finds that invasive plant and animal species pose an unacceptable risk to New York state’s environment and economy and that this risk is increasing through time as more invasive species become established within the state. The legislature additionally finds that invasive species are having a detrimental effect upon the state’s fresh and tidal wetlands, water bodies and waterways, forests, agricultural lands, meadows and grasslands, and other natural communities and systems by out-competing native species, diminishing biological diversity, altering community structure and, in some cases, changing ecosystem processes. Moreover, the legislature recognizes that the ecological integrity of an increasing number of publicly and privately-owned parks and preserves is being adversely affected by invasive plants and animals, challenging the ability of land management agencies to effectively manage these sites. The legislature further recognizes that nearly half (forty-six percent; fifty-seven percent of the plants, thirty-nine percent of the animals) of the species on the federal list of endangered species are declining, at least in part, due to invasive species. The legislature additionally finds that invasive species have an adverse impact on the New York state economy. Particularly affected by these species are the water supply, agricultural, and recreational sectors of the state economy. The economic impact to the national economy has been estimated to be as high as one hundred thirty-seven billion dollars annually.