The acquisition of this additional habitat for preservation as wildlife management acreage extends our mutual efforts to save vital coastal wetlands
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St. John the Baptist Parish, LA (Vocus) April 22, 2009
Today, Earth Day, The Conservation Fund, the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) and representatives from the Entergy Charitable Foundation gathered on the banks of Pass Manchac in southeastern Louisiana to announce and celebrate the protection of 1,700 acres on the south shore of Lake Pontchartrain, just 25 miles west of New Orleans.
Coastal swamp dominated by dramatic cypress and tupelo trees, the property is home to migratory waterfowl and neotropical species, including northern pintail, greater white-fronted goose, American white pelican, little blue heron, and the black tern. By protecting these wetlands, the public also gains new places to fish, bird-watch and explore, enhanced water quality and, with other planned efforts, protection from floods and storm surges.
LDWF purchased the property from The Conservation Fund as an addition to Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area. The purchase was made possible through a grant from the Entergy Charitable Foundation. Entergy's donation of nearly $300,000 marked its first gift in a new environmental initiative. Additional funding came from the state and a federal grant through the North American Wetlands Conservation Act.
"It has been said that we do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children," said E. Renae Conley, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana, LLC and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, L.C.C., and a member of The Entergy Charitable Foundation board of directors. "We are proud to partner with The Conservation Fund and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries to protect and preserve the natural beauty of Louisiana wetlands for the enjoyment of future generations. But equally important is the natural protection that wetlands provide from the ravages of hurricanes. Every acre of wetlands that we save protects homes, businesses and communities."
"The acquisition of this additional habitat for preservation as wildlife management acreage extends our mutual efforts to save vital coastal wetlands," said LDWF Secretary Robert Barham. "Our partners are to be commended for their efforts we celebrate here on Earth Day 2009."
This project builds on The Conservation Fund's long-term commitment to protect and restore coastal wetlands within the Lake Pontchartrain / Lake Maurepas basin. Since 1990, the Fund and its partners have protected more than 127,000 acres of coastal wetland and associated upland habitats, including the establishment of the Maurepas Swamp Wildlife Management Area and, most recently, the protection of 7,200 acres at Joyce Wildlife Management Area. This effort continues, as The Fund and the state of Louisiana work together to preserve vital coastal wetlands across the region.
"These iconic cypress-tupelo swamps are a significant part of Louisiana's rich natural heritage, and their protection is a wise investment that benefits the environment, wildlife and people for generations to come," said Ray Herndon, The Conservation Fund's director of the lower Mississippi region. "With Entergy's generous donation we've been able to maximize the leverage of the public dollars used. We thank all of our partners for making this a conservation success."
About The Conservation Fund
The Conservation Fund is dedicated to advancing America's land and water legacy. With our partners, we conserve land, train leaders and invest in conservation at home. Since 1985, we have helped protect more than 6 million acres, sustaining wild havens, working lands and vibrant communities. We're a top-ranked conservation organization, effective and efficient. http://www.conservationfund.org
About Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Louisiana's Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is charged with the responsibility of managing and protecting Louisiana's abundant natural resources while promoting wise utilization of Louisiana's renewable fish and wildlife resources and their supporting habitats. For more information, visit http://www.wlf.louisiana.gov.
About Entergy / The Entergy Charitable Foundation
Entergy Corporation is an integrated energy company engaged primarily in electric power production and retail distribution operations. Entergy owns and operates power plants with approximately 30,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity, and it is the second-largest nuclear generator in the United States. Entergy delivers electricity to 2.7 million utility customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas. Entergy has annual revenues of over $13 billion and approximately 14,700 employees.
The Entergy Charitable Foundation (ECF) is a private foundation dedicated to supporting charitable organizations in the diverse communities where Entergy customers and employees live and work. The Foundation's goal is to support initiatives that help create and sustain thriving communities. ECF has a special focus on low-income initiatives as well as educational and literacy programs.
The Conservation Fund
Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
Alex J. Schott