Chalmette Refining Donates $150,000 to LPBF for Coastal RestorationChalmette, La. – A recent $150,000 donation from Chalmette Refining to the Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation (LPBF) will significantly grow efforts to plant trees in front of the storm surge reduction system in St. Bernard Parish.
Approximately 60,000 trees have already been planted near the Caernarvon Freshwater Diversion in St. Bernard and Plaquemines Parishes and the Maurepas area. Chalmette Refining’s donation will provide for a commercial planting of 5,000 trees in St. Bernard Parish this winter. All of the trees – Cypress, Water Tupelo and Red Maple – are native to and grown in Louisiana. Each tree will also have a nutria protector. A volunteer tree planting event is being planned for St. Bernard Parish in the first quarter of 2019.
Restoring Louisiana’s native habitat is at the heart of LPBF’s mission to drive environmental sustainability and stewardship. Since 2010, the nonprofit organization has been restoring swamps and coastlines in our area – important to the safety and culture of Louisiana.
“Storm surge protection is important to all of us that live in Southeast Louisiana,” said Jerry Forstell, Chalmette Refining Manager. “On behalf of all of the employees of Chalmette Refining and PBF Energy, we are proud to be a part of the swamp restoration program in Caernarvon – one of our first lines of defense from storm surge.”
LPBF has been planting approximately 700 trees at a time through volunteer efforts. “So far we’ve restored more than 300 acres of swamp,” said Theryn Henkel, PhD, Assistant Director of LPBF’s Coastal Sustainability Program. “This donation will allow us to restore 25 more acres. This is the largest donation we’ve had for the swamp restoration program.
“This planting is part of a multiple lines of defense strategy,” said Henkel. The planting will be located in front of the newly built Hurricane & Storm Damage Risk Reduction System, a levee system that protects the Greater New Orleans Region, and specifically, where these trees will be planted, protects communities in St. Bernard Parish. “Swamp forest is good at knocking down storm surge and protecting against the wind. If we protect the levee that protects the people, we’ve built one more line of defense.”
Chalmette Refining – leading the way in St. Bernard Parish for over 100 years. Now, as part of the PBF Energy family of refineries, we are investing in the facility and the community to bring a new energy to the region. For more information go to www.pbfenergy.com or www.chalmetterefining.com.
Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation’s (LPBF) vision is an environmentally sustainable, prosperous, and resilient region. Our mission is to drive environmental sustainability and stewardship through scientific research, education and advocacy. For more information and to check results of sampling of many of the area water bodies as well as read reports, go to www.saveourlake.org.
Photo Caption: Chalmette Refining (CHR) recently donated $150,000 to LPBF to plant trees in front of the newly built Hurricane & Storm Damage Risk Reduction System in St. Bernard Parish. Pictured in the photo from left: Elizabeth Frost and Scott Goodwin (CHR); Kristi Trail and Dr. John Lopez (LPBF); Kathy Sharp, Jerry Forstell and Dorothy Hills (CHR).