Valero Energy Contributes $1 Million to Pontchartrain Conservancy’s Swamp Restoration

Published 9:56 am Tuesday, January 25, 2022

NORCO, LAValero Energy presented a check for $1 million to Pontchartrain Conservancy to fund a multiyear plan for local swamp restoration. Over the past 10 years, Valero has partnered with Pontchartrain Conservancy to provide both monetary support and volunteers to attend tree plantings hosted by the nonprofit organization. Collaborative efforts thus far include 80,000 trees planted and approximately 1,146 tCO2e sequestered annually. In addition, they have worked to restore over 400 acres of habitat.

The $1 million donation towards the multi-year swamp restoration will be utilized to include restoration areas in the Labranche Wetlands of St. Charles Parish and surrounding areas, as well as St. Bernard Parish, where Valero currently has a facility. Other proposed areas include Caernarvon, Maurepas and Mandeville areas. Anticipated project activities include environmental monitoring, swamp restoration suitability analyses, restoration planting and the engagement of our local community especially among students in our school system

“Valero and Pontchartrain Conservancy aligned more than a decade ago primarily because of our similar values,” said Jerry Stumbo, VP and General Manager of Valero’s St. Charles Refinery. “At Valero, we are committed stewards of the environment.”

“Louisiana’s communities and wildlife rely on healthy coastal areas to continue to thrive and succeed,” said Kristi Trail, executive director of Pontchartrain Conservancy. “We are immensely grateful for organizations like Valero, who continue to partner with us as we work toward the goal of restoring and rebuilding our essential wetlands. Not only does this assist in preserving our communities in the short term, but it ensures that coastal habitats are preserved for generations to come.”

Funding will be used initially for soil and water sample monitoring to determine where swamp restoration and tree plantings have the best chances to thrive. Once the exact locations have been chosen, the grant will also be used to purchase thousands of native trees and supplies for planting including shovels, gloves, tree guards, etc., and for rental of specialized travel boats to planting sites.