Montpelier, Vt.-- Today, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), Vermont's chapter of The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and Keurig Green Mountain, Inc. (Keurig) announced an innovative partnership to advance Vermont's Clean Water Initiative and to address the pervasive water quality challenges in Lake Champlain. This public-private collaboration aims to advance water quality in Vermont, starting by developing a tool to identify opportunities to protect water quality through conservation, as well as by making some key strategic conservation investments.
Keurig announced its support for the State's Clean Water Initiative in January 2015, and last October, it announced a further collaboration with TNC. "Keurig has a huge appetite to create and inspire change, particularly when it comes to water stewardship in our home state of Vermont," said Monique Oxender, Keurig's Chief Sustainability Officer. "We know that improving and maintaining water quality is a complex challenge that requires the collaboration of private and public sector organizations. We're proud to partner for innovative thinking and on-the-ground projects with the State and The Nature Conservancy to secure clean water for future generations."
One groundbreaking project is the joint-development of the Clean Water Roadmap, a user-friendly watershed management tool to help prioritize projects to improve water quality in Vermont. This interactive online tool will enable evaluations for phosphorus reduction at specific sites across the Vermont portion of the Lake Champlain watershed. This tool will complement the Water Quality Blueprint, a project of The Nature Conservancy, which will help prioritize river corridors and wetlands for protection and restoration. The Clean Water Roadmap will be released in early 2017.
"Cleaning up Lake Champlain is a big task, and this partnership with Keurig Green Mountain and The Nature Conservancy provides an important tool to help us get this right," explains Deb Markowitz, Secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources. "The Clean Water Roadmap will allow us to be strategic and target the biggest water pollution sources for cleanup first."
Strategic conservations investments are also part of this innovative partnership. With support from Keurig, the State of Vermont, and The Nature Conservancy, parcels along the Lake Champlain corridor are being conserved and restored to prevent phosphorus run-off and to rebuild floodplains that naturally filter out nutrients. These "green infrastructure" investments provide pollution reduction at a fraction of the cost of "grey" or human-built infrastructure.
"Nature based solutions are a win-win for many of the environmental challenges we face today. By harnessing and restoring our natural assets such as floodplains, we can cost effectively clean our waters while providing habitat for wildlife and improving flood resiliency," shared Heather Furman, State Director for The Nature Conservancy. "We are proud to bring our leading edge science and expertise in land protection to bear on the challenges of water degradation,"
Secretary Deb Markowitz, TNC's State Director Heather Furman, and Keurig's Senior Sustainability Manager Tina Bosch Ladd will lead a panel discussion on innovative collaboration for water quality at the Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility Conference tomorrow, May 12, 2016 at the UVM Davis Center in Burlington.
About The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation's Watershed Management Division
The Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation manages Vermont's water and air quality, regulated solid and hazardous wastes, and pollution and waste reduction programs. DEC's Watershed Management Division is responsible for protecting, maintaining, enhancing and restoring the quality of Vermont's surface water resources - lakes, ponds, rivers, streams and wetlands.
About The Nature Conservancy in Vermont
The Nature Conservancy in Vermont is a leader in safeguarding the natural resources of the Green Mountain State. We have helped conserve over 300,000 acres of land, 1,200 miles of shoreline, and we manage and maintain 55 natural areas that are open for hiking, fishing, skiing and hunting. The Vermont chapter is proud to be connecting land, water, and wildlife for over 50 years. To learn more and support our important work, please visit: www.nature.org/vermont or follow us on facebook.com/TNCVT
About Keurig Green Mountain, Inc.
Keurig Green Mountain is reimagining how beverages can be created, personalized, and enjoyed, fresh-made in homes and workplaces. Keurig Green Mountain is a personal beverage system company revolutionizing the beverage experience through the power of innovative technology and strategic brand partnerships. With an expanding family of more than 80 beloved brands and more than 575 beverage varieties, Keurig Green Mountain's Keurig® hot and Keurig® KOLD™ beverage systems deliver great taste, convenience, and choice at the push of a button. As a company founded on social responsibility, Keurig Green Mountain is committed to using the power of business to brew a better world through its work to build resilient supply chains, sustainable products, thriving communities, and a water-secure world. Keurig is now a private business owned by an investment group led by JAB Holding Co. For more information visit: www.KeurigGreenMountain.com. To purchase Keurig products visit: www.keurig.com,www.keurig.ca, or www.keurig.co.uk.
Kari Dolan, VT Dept of Environmental Conservation: email@example.com, 802-498-7516
Eve Frankel, The Nature Conservancy: firstname.lastname@example.org, 802 229 4425 x101
Kristen Mercure, Keurig Green Mountain, Inc.: email@example.com, 802-488-2498