March 10, 2003
Tom MacKenzie, U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service, 404-679-7291,
Southern Company, Fish and Wildlife Foundation Grant $100,000 to Support National Wildlife Refuge System Centennial
ATLANTA -- Southern Company, one of the nation’s largest energy producers, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation today announced two $50,000 grants in recognition of the Centennial of the National Wildlife Refuge System, started in 1903 by President Theodore Roosevelt.
The grants will be awarded to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and The Nature Conservancy as part of Southern Company’s partnership with the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for an 18-month pilot program called The Power of Flight. Southern Company and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation each contributed $250,000 to the program to be awarded as grants for bird and habitat conservation and environmental education projects in Southern Company’s operating area.
“The Centennial celebrates
President Roosevelt’s vision to conserve our nation’s unique
and critical habitat,” said Dwight Evans, Southern Company executive
vice president of external affairs. “The National Wildlife Refuge
System protects 95 million acres for wildlife while providing superior
opportunities for hunting, fishing, recreation, wildlife observation
and education. These grants will help promote active management of two
critical southeastern ecosystems, speed up restoration efforts and improve
biodiversity -- something valuable for generations to come.”
The other grant will be awarded to the Mississippi Chapter of The Nature Conservancy to help restore more than 500 acres of wet pine savanna habitat on the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge and the Grand Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Wet pine savannas provide critical habitat for the endangered Mississippi Sandhill Crane and a host of other birds and wildlife.
“We really appreciate the efforts and support of our partners, the Southern Company, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, and The Nature Conservancy. With their help, we will be able to enhance hundreds of acres of wetlands for the benefit of migratory birds and waterfowl,” said Sam D. Hamilton, Southeast Regional Director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “Their support proves that public and private partnerships do work.”
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving,
protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife and plants and their habitats
for the continuing benefit of the American people. The Service manages
the 95-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System that encompasses
540 national wildlife refuges, thousands of small wetlands and other
special management areas. It also operates 69 national fish hatcheries,
64 fishery resource offices and 78 ecological services field stations.
The agency enforces federal wildlife laws, administers the Endangered
Species Act, manages migratory bird populations, restores nationally
significant fisheries, conserves and restores wildlife habitat such
as wetlands, and helps foreign governments with their conservation efforts.
It also oversees the Federal Aid program that distributes hundreds of
millions of dollars in excise taxes on fishing and hunting equipment
to state fish and wildlife agencies. Visit the Se!
The National Fish
and Wildlife Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting
the conservation of fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats by attracting
diverse investments, encouraging public and private collaboration, and
funding the stewardship of natural resources. The Foundation supports
and invests in the best possible solutions for wildlife conservation
through creative, diverse, and respectful partnerships. For more information,
please visit www.nfwf.org.
NOTE: You can view our releases or subscribe to receive them -- via e-mail -- at the Service's Southeast Regional home page at http://southeast.fws.gov. Our national home page is at: http://news.fws.gov/newsreleases/.
Atlanta, GA 30345