(Business Wire) MIDLAND, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- With shovels in hand, volunteers recently teamed up to mark the official start to a collaboration between Dow (NYSE: DOW) and Restore the Earth Foundation, Inc., in which 200 acres of bald cypress trees will be planted to help restore the critical ecosystem known as North America’s Amazon. The planting of seedlings in the Point-aux-Chenes Wildlife Management Area of Montegut, Louisiana marks the start of this joint initiative, developed under Dow’s Official Carbon Partnership with the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The reforestation project is estimated to generate 40,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions reductions over a 40-year period, to be contributed towards Dow’s partnership with the IOC.
For Scott White, responsible care leader for Dow’s St. Charles operations, the alliance with Restore the Earth Foundation is a significant step in the sustainability journey. “Through my years working for Dow’s operations in Louisiana, I have developed a deep respect for the region and a desire to help create a positive legacy. One of our sustainability goals at Dow revolves around ‘Valuing Nature,’ delivering business and natural capital value through projects that are good for the Company and better for ecosystems. In Restore the Earth Foundation, we recognized a powerful ally in taking tangible action to breathe new life into the Mississippi River Basin and the surrounding community.”
Over the past 100 years, 80 percent of the southern portion of this third largest watershed on Earth—which includes the Mississippi River Basin—has been degraded or destroyed by human and industrial development, as well as major weather events including Hurricane Katrina. In addition to the carbon reduction benefits, the revitalization of native bald cypress trees serves as a line of defense to help protect more than 200,000 residents from future storms, while improving water quality and enhancing wildlife habitat.
“Hurricane Katrina and the devastation it wreaked upon the Gulf Coast region was a wakeup call for many in this immediate area and across the country,” said Taylor Marshall, director of sustainable programs, Restore the Earth Foundation, Inc. “With the scale of that disaster, the others that have occurred since, and those that might occur in the future, we firmly believe that a comprehensive and sustained partnership between the public and private sectors is the only viable solution. This partnership with Dow echoes that call to arms perfectly.”
“Climate change is one of today’s most urgent global challenges and the IOC is fully committed to helping the world tackle it,” said Michelle Lemaître, head of sustainability at the IOC. “Our partnership with Dow not only provides us with an effective strategy to balance our own emissions, but also allows us to use the power of sport to engage companies and organizations in tangible climate action.”
According to Dr. Anastasia Behr, technology & sustainability leader for Dow Olympic & Sports Solutions, the collaboration represents a greater commitment within Dow to not only reduce emissions, but to place an emphasis on nature. “We understand that we’re in a race against time when it comes to the negative effects of global warming, and as a materials science company we are in a position to make an impact. This is why Dow became the carbon partner of the IOC. We are developing projects globally that, through the platform of sport, seek to accelerate the adoption of lower-carbon technologies. Our project with Restore the Earth Foundation allows us to widen that impact through natural, long-term solutions to combat greenhouse gases.”
The 200-acre commitment is anticipated to generate $11 million in environmental, social and economic value in the region, as estimated by Restore the Earth’s EcoMetrics Model and outlined in the Cypress Reforestation Social Return on Investment Report.
This project with Restore the Earth Foundation is one of several projects under the Dow-IOC Official Carbon Partnership, initiated in 2017, to balance the operational carbon footprint of the IOC, and encourages companies to adopt programs for reducing carbon emissions while catalyzing change across value chains. The impact of the partnership goes beyond balancing the IOC footprint and creates a legacy of low carbon technologies and climate action focused collaborations.
To discover additional information on Dow’s sustainability programs and the Dow-IOC Carbon Partnership, visit corporate.dow.com/en-us/about/partnerships/sports/sustainability. For more information about Restore the Earth Foundation, visit http://restoretheearth.org/.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines one of the broadest technology sets in the industry with asset integration, focused innovation and global scale to achieve profitable growth and become the most innovative, customer centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company. Dow’s portfolio of performance materials, industrial intermediates and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of differentiated science-based products and solutions for our customers in high-growth segments, such as packaging, infrastructure and consumer care. Dow operates 113 manufacturing sites in 31 countries and employs approximately 37,000 people. Dow delivered pro forma sales of approximately $50 billion in 2018. The Company is Worldwide Partner and the Official Chemistry Company of the Olympic Movement. References to Dow or the Company mean Dow Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information, please visit www.dow.com or follow @DowNewsroom on Twitter.
About Restore the Earth Foundation, Inc.
Restore the Earth Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) not for profit with a mission of restoring the Earth’s essential forest and wetland ecosystems. Restore the Earth knows that it is possible to go beyond just protecting our environment—it is possible to restore it. And when you restore the environment at landscape scale, it creates incredible value for ecosystems, biodiversity, habitat, communities, business and the Earth.
Restore the Earth works together with partners to bring solid solutions to deliver successful restoration to meet strategic objectives. Its strong public/private partnerships support its longstanding and proven track record of successfully restoring natural systems on a large scale, creating environmental, social and economic value.
Restore the Earth Foundation’s innovative EcoMetrics Model, accurately accounts for, in monetized terms, the environmental, social and economic co-benefits/value created by restoration. An EcoMetrics report is accredited by international standards, third party verified and ready for audit. EcoMetrics allows Restore the Earth funding partners to report back to stakeholders on the ROI and SROI of investment in environmental restoration with complete confidence.