Environmental Business Journal (EBJ), a strategic business intelligence provider to the environmental industry, has honored RES and its partners with two awards for Project Merit, Natural Resource Management, for 2018. The awards recognize two separate ecological restoration projects.
The first project, funded by global energy firm BHP, restored a coastal marsh that serves as part of the natural infrastructure protecting a vulnerable community in southern Louisiana from future storm surges. Envisioned and implemented by RES, in partnership with the America’s WETLAND Foundation (AWF), the BHP Terrebonne Biodiversity and Resiliency Projects comprise two sites, located alongside a local levee system, where saltwater intrusion had destroyed the original bald cypress forest. The projects provide resiliency to Terrebonne Parish citizens by protecting and stabilizing the levee systems. RES restored 125 wetland acres in total, including creating 2.25 miles of marsh terraces, planting 35,000 bald cypress trees and conducting invasive species management.
Benefits to the local community include an estimated annual economic value of $1.2 million, as well as carbon sequestration, improved water quality (phosphorus/nitrogen reductions), enhanced biodiversity, and community awareness via planting events and updates. Project details are discussed in the project overview and volunteer planting day videos.
BHP believes that giving back to the communities where we operate is a key factor in doing business, Myron Protz, BHP Gulf of Mexico General Manager, said. Through this project, we know that strengthening the ecosystem provides a wide range of benefits at a time when the region is challenged and needs the cooperation of all sectors.
For the second project, RES leveraged its site selection and restoration expertise in challenging environments to produce compensatory mitigation complemented by land donation, in coordination with local environmental stakeholders, achieving large-scale, perpetual conservation in Louisianas Maurepas Swamp.
The Maurepas Swamp has been a priority area for Louisiana conservationists, having been in decline since the 1930s, when the area was heavily logged for cypress timber. RES developed permittee-responsible mitigation (PRM) sites comprising 7,511.6 acres of critical habitat in support of the Maurepas Pipeline project. Portions of the project crossed the Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area (MSWMA), owned and managed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. RES preserved some 6,793 acres and enhanced 475 acres of bottomland hardwood habitat. The project also enhanced and preserved more than 166 acres of cypress/tupelo swamp. This afforded RES the opportunity to coordinate with multiple stakeholders in support of area conservation priorities, and to donate thousands of fully protected acres to the State of Louisiana for incorporation into the MSWMA for public use.
RES is excited to do its part as restoration projects enter into the mix of corporate social responsibility efforts, says Elliott Bouillion, CEO for RES. BHP really stepped up to support the Terrebonne Parish coastal resiliency plan, and we were delighted to be their implementation partner.
The Maurepas Swamp project was gratifying for us, because we believe every mitigation opportunity is also a chance to magnify the overall gains for a regional ecosystem, Bouillion continued. We are always seeking sites for mitigation that adjoin areas already under conservation. In this case, we were able to donate land to achieve this broader benefit.
About RES RES is the nations only fully scaled operating company providing ecological restoration and water resource solutions to the public and private sector. Its unique operating-company model is scaled to cover the project lifecycle from end to end, all with in-house teams and project financing capacity. RES delivers turnkey, land-based projects that build natural resilience into ecosystems, enabling them to thrive in step with economic growth. For more information, visit www.res.us.
About the EBJ Business Achievement Awards: In October-December 2018, Environmental Business Journal solicited nominations for the EBJ Business Achievement Awards. Nominations were accepted in 200-word essays in specific categories. Final awards were determined by a committee of EBJ editorial advisory board members. (Disclaimer: company audits were not conducted to verify information or claims submitted with nominations)
About EBI: Founded in 1988, Environmental Business International Inc. (San Diego, Calif.) is a research, publishing, and consulting company that specializes in defining emerging markets and generating strategic market intelligence for companies, investors and policymakers. EBI publishes Environmental Business Journal and Climate Change Business Journal. EBI also performs contract research for the government and private sector and founded the Environmental Industry Summit Series, four annual conferences event for executives in the environmental industry.
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