ROHRERSVILLE, Md. April 28, 2018
This Earth Day weekend the Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF), Sterling Planet, and WGL Energy Services (WGL Energy) celebrated the eighth year of the CleanSteps® Carbon Offsets program with the planting of more than 1,000 native trees and shrubs in the Antietam Creek watershed. Employees from WGL Energy and Sterling Planet joined CBF volunteers at Orcino Farms in Rohrersville, MD to help restore the riparian buffer zone along Little Antietam. Additionally, a presentation of $168,334 was made to the Carbon Reduction Fund (CRF), managed by CBF, with $105,556 contributed by WGL and $62,778 by Sterling Planet.
In an effort to improve air and water quality in the region, the Orcino Farms project is converting more than 100 acres of cornfields to permanent pasture to establish a rotational grazing operation for beef cattle. The water well, water troughs, and cattle stream exclusion fencing are already under construction. CBF and volunteers planted more than 2,000 trees on 10 acres along Little Antietam Creek in the spring and fall of 2017. This year’s Earth Day planting was the final leg of this project to restore the floodplain.
“Thanks to the reinvestment fund supported by this program, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation has been able to plant 130 acres of trees and sequester an additional 26,000 tonnes of carbon while reducing pollution to local streams and the Chesapeake Bay,” said Beth McGee, Director of Science and Agricultural Policy for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.
Projects like this are made possible through the public-private partnership between Sterling Planet, WGL Energy and CBF. The WGL Energy CleanSteps® Carbon Offsets product has reduced the carbon footprint of residential and commercial natural gas customers by matching usage with locally sourced, third-party verified carbon offsets. Since its launch in September, 2010, the total number of carbon offsets purchased on behalf of customers holds the CO2 equivalency to 91,000 passenger vehicles being removed from the roads for a year. This unique program goes beyond the opportunity to offset energy use by investing in developing local carbon reduction projects that directly affect the Chesapeake Bay region. To date, more than $1.6 million has been contributed by WGL Energy and Sterling Planet to the CRF in support of these projects.
“WGL Energy is committed to providing affordable opportunities to our residential and commercial customers that help them reduce their environmental footprint,” said Sanjiv Mahan, President of WGL Energy. “This tree planting enables us to stand beside our customers and make a difference in our local environment today and into the future.”
“Sterling Planet creates sustainable programs and projects that show tangible, physical results in improving the Earth’s environment,” said Alden Hathaway, Senior Vice President of Sterling Planet. “With the Carbon Reduction Fund, the WGL Energy CleanSteps® Carbon Offsets program participants are making truly enduring improvements to air and water quality, reducing carbon dioxide through their purchases and contributing to the return of Bay grasses, oysters and blue crabs to the bay.”
About The Chesapeake Bay Foundation:
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) is the only independent 501(c)(3) organization dedicated solely to restoring and protecting the Chesapeake Bay and its tributary rivers. Across the six-state Chesapeake watershed, CBF sets the agenda, serves as a watchdog, and speaks out on behalf of the Chesapeake Bay to business, government, and the public. http://www.cbf.org
About WGL Energy:
WGL Energy delivers a full spectrum of energy offerings, including electricity, natural gas, renewable energy, carbon reduction, distributed generation and energy efficiency solutions provided by WGL Energy Services, Inc. and WGL Energy Systems, Inc. To learn more, visit us at http://www.wglenergy.com. Follow us @wglenergy on Twitter and WGL Energy on LinkedIn.
About Sterling Planet:
Sterling Planet delivers innovative energy solutions that benefit the environment. Since 2000, the Atlanta-based company has offered business and residential customers renewable energy certificates as an easy, affordable way to reduce the impact of everyday electricity use. The comprehensive portfolio of solutions has since grown to include carbon offsets, energy efficiency solutions, and green power project development. Learn more at http://www.sterlingplanet.com, and follow us @SterlingPlanet on Twitter and Sterling Planet on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Sterling Planet, Inc. contact:
Kelly Keswick, Director of Marketing & Communications
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