WASHINGTON, Oct. 3 -- The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation issued the following news release:
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) today announced 65 grant awards totaling $2.5 million to restore wildlife habitat and urban waters in 27 states and the District of Columbia. Grantees have committed an additional $5.2 million in local project support, generating a total conservation investment of more than $7.6 million.
The grants, awarded through the foundation's Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program, will support projects that develop community stewardship of natural resources and address water quality issues in priority watersheds across the country.
The 2017 grant winners were selected from a highly competitive pool of more than 250 applications. The projects that earned grant awards involve a high level of partnership between local government agencies, elected officials, community groups, businesses, schools and environmental organizations.
A full list of 2017 projects is available here.
"These community-led projects will engage thousands of volunteers, students and local residents in the restoration of wetlands, streams and coastal habitats across the nation," said Jeff Trandahl, executive director and CEO of NFWF. "The critical work done by our grantees will build on a long history of conservation success made possible by the public- and private-sector partners supporting the Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program."
Support for the 2017 Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program is provided by the Wildlife Habitat Council, and major funding by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, FedEx and Southern Company.
Since 1999, the Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Program has supported more than 885 projects, with more than $10.7 million in federal funds, $9.3 million in private and corporate contributions, and $72.2 million in matching funds at the local level.
"These grants are providing communities with the funds they need to improve water quality, which will allow local businesses to grow and ensure families have safe places to play and enjoy nature," said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.
"Through our collaboration with the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, FedEx team members are able to work directly with non-profits to create long-lasting environmental and social improvements in the communities they live and work," said Mitch Jackson, FedEx's vice president for environmental affairs and sustainability. "When we combine our expertise, we can help more people thrive, more communities flourish and more businesses prosper."
"Southern Company is proud to continue our long-standing commitment to natural resource conservation and stewardship through the Five Star and Urban Waters Program," said Southern Company Environmental and System Planning Vice President Jeff Burleson. "By preserving and protecting our wetlands and streams, we are giving back to the customers and communities we are privileged to serve."
"By partnering together with NFWF, private partners and other Federal agencies, the Forest Service is proud to help communities accomplish their restoration goals. We are committed to sustaining our nation's forests and grasslands through partnerships that engage people directly in the stewardship of their natural resources," said Victoria Christiansen, deputy chief of state and private forestry for the U.S. Forest Service.
"Together with our partners, the Fish and Wildlife Service provides new chances for people who live in some of America's biggest cities to experience nature close to their own communities," said National Wildlife Refuge System Chief Cynthia Martinez. "These grants are critical to inspiring the next generation to become the natural resource stewards of tomorrow."
About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) protects and restores our nation's wildlife and habitats. Chartered by Congress in 1984, NFWF directs public conservation dollars to the most pressing environmental needs and matches those investments with private contributions. NFWF works with government, nonprofit and corporate partners to find solutions for the most intractable conservation challenges. Over the last three decades, NFWF has funded more than 4,500 organizations and committed more than $3.8 billion to conservation projects. Learn more at www.nfwf.org.
About the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's mission is to protect human health and the environment. EPA believes environmental protection contributes to making our communities and ecosystems diverse, sustainable and economically productive and that all parts of society -- communities, individuals, businesses, and state, local and tribal governments -- have access to accurate information sufficient to effectively participate in managing human health and environmental risks. www.epa.gov
About FedEx Corp.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services. With annual revenues of $60 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand. Consistently ranked among the world's most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 400,000 team members to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. To learn more about how FedEx connects people and possibilities around the world, please visit about.fedex.com.
About Southern Company
Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is America's premier energy company, with 46,000 megawatts of generating capacity and 1,500 billion cubic feet of combined natural gas consumption and throughput volume serving 9 million customers through its subsidiaries. The company provides clean, safe, reliable and affordable energy through electric operating companies in four states, natural gas distribution companies in seven states, a competitive generation company serving wholesale customers across America and a nationally recognized provider of customized energy solutions, as well as fiber optics and wireless communications. Southern Company brands are known for excellent customer service, high reliability and affordable prices that are below the national average. Through an industry-leading commitment to innovation, Southern Company and its subsidiaries are inventing America's energy future by developing the full portfolio of energy resources, including carbon-free nuclear, 21st century coal, natural gas, renewables and energy efficiency, and creating new products and services for the benefit of customers. Southern Company has been named by the U.S. Department of Defense and G.I. Jobs magazine as a top military employer, recognized among the Top 50 Companies for Diversity by DiversityInc, listed by Black Enterprise magazine as one of the 40 Best Companies for Diversity and designated a Top Employer for Hispanics by Hispanic Network. The company has earned a National Award of Nuclear Science and History from the National Atomic Museum Foundation for its leadership and commitment to nuclear development and is continually ranked among the top energy companies in Fortune's annual World's Most Admired Electric and Gas Utility rankings. Visit our website at www.southerncompany.com.
About the U.S. Forest Service
The mission of the U.S. Forest Service, an agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains world-renowned forestry research and wildland fire management organizations. National forests and grasslands contribute more than $30 billion to the American economy annually and support nearly 360,000 jobs. These lands also provide 30 percent of the nation's surface drinking water to cities and rural communities; approximately 60 million Americans rely on drinking water that originated from the National Forest System. www.fs.fed.us
About the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service works with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. www.fws.gov.
Targeted News Service, source News Service