Virginia Natural Gas and Southern Company GAS awards $40,000 in grants to The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation for longleaf pine restoration across southeastern Virginia
In August, The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) announced $5.3 million in grants to restore, enhance and protect longleaf pine forests in nine southern states, including Virginia. The grants will leverage $6.9 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of $12.2 million.
With a long history of environmental stewardship, Virginia Natural Gas is proud to support conservation efforts through the latest Longleaf Landscape Stewardship Fund. Together with partners Southern Company, our parent Southern Company Gas, and the National Wildlife Foundation, more than $2.7 million will support the diverse longleaf-pine ecosystems in Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi and Virginia.
The grants awarded will bolster efforts to conserve more than 415,000 acres of longleaf pine habitat and help recover populations of at-risk wildlife, including rare and endangered wildlife like the indigo snake, red-cockaded woodpecker and gopher tortoise.
In Virginia, $40,000 from Southern Company of the $200,000 total grants awarded in our service territory will fund restoration of forest habitat in nine conservation areas across southeastern Virginia on nearly 12,000 acres of public and private lands through longleaf seedling planting, prescribed burning, selective timer thinning and groundcover restoration.
In total, 21 grants were awarded through the Longleaf Landscape Stewardship Fund, a public-private partnership between NFWF and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, International Paper’s Forestland Stewards Partnership, Southern Company, the Arbor Day Foundation, Altria Group and The Orton Foundation, an affiliate of The Moore Charitable Foundation. Additional funding is provided by AstraZeneca and the American Forest Foundation.
The awards mark a decade of grant-making through this public-private partnership, which has now invested nearly $50 million since the program launched in 2012, leveraging an additional $62 million in matching contributions for a total conservation impact of more than $112 million.