Washington, D.C. – November 18, 2008 – Today at the Wildlife Habitat Council’s 20th Annual Symposium, Pheasants Forever (PF) and Quail Forever (QF) recognized DTE Energy with the first Prairies for Tomorrow Award. DTE Energy earned the award for habitat improvements made to 800 acres of its Monroe, Michigan Power Plant.
The project began as a partnership between DTE Energy, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Monroe Public Schools, and the Monroe County Chapter of Pheasants Forever in 2006. Together, the group has restored wetlands, re-established native prairie grass stands, and monitored wildlife habitat population increases. In addition, Monroe area schools have utilized the site for class field trips and wildlife observation.
The Prairies for Tomorrow award was created to encourage the completion of corporate wildlife habitat projects, specifically prairie restoration projects. Prairies are home to a myriad of wildlife species, including pheasants, quail and a variety of endangered species. Prairies also remove and store carbon from the atmosphere, conserve soil resources, and filter run-off. Unfortunately, prairies are the fastest disappearing ecosystem on the planet.
“We’re pleased and proud to be recognized by Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever,” said Frank Wszelaki, Monroe Power Plant director. “This was a team effort and indicative of our overall company commitment to help protect and strengthen our environment for future generations.”
U.S. Representative John Dingell (D., Dearborn) has also been vocal in his support of the plant’s efforts. In a May 31, 2007 Toledo Blade article, Dingell was quoted as saying, “For those of us who are passionate about conservation, it is gratifying to see this wetland restoration project and how government can work with business for the common cause of protecting land and the creatures that inhabit it.”
“This is exactly the type of project we hoped to acknowledge when we first began talking about the Prairies for Tomorrow Award with the Wildlife Habitat Council,” explained PF/QF’s Greg Emerick as he presented DTE Energy with the award at today’s luncheon. “DTE Energy’s habitat accomplishments at their Monroe Power Plant once again prove conservation does have an important place in today’s business community.”
Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever are non-profit conservation organizations dedicated to the protection and enhancement of pheasant, quail, and other wildlife populations in North America through habitat improvement, land management, public awareness, and education. PF/QF has more than 129,000 members in 700 local chapters across the continent.