Companies expand commitment to support three new projects in Colorado River Basin
Submitted by Bonneville Environmental Foundation
The Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF) today announced Ted’s Montana Grill and WhiteWave Foods have, for the first time, pooled resources to help address the growing issue of freshwater scarcity in the United States. Facilitated through BEF’s Water Restoration Certificate® Program, the commitment by these three companies supports three new flow restoration projects in the Colorado River Basin – a region that represents one of the most complex and endangered water systems in the United States. This collective action approach aims to improve the long-term economic and environmental health of the Colorado River Basin and reflects a breakthrough approach to corporate water stewardship.
“These brands recognize that healthy waterways are the key to future economic and social stability here in the United States,” notes Todd Reeve, CEO of BEF. “Their commitment represents a critical step in this issue – where brands from different industry sectors work collectively to advance corporate water stewardship and in so doing, take the lead in helping redefine how freshwater is valued, used and managed.”
The two companies have committed to support new projects that restore flow to three Colorado River tributaries – the Cimarron River, the Fraser River and the Roaring Fork River. This collective support aims to restore hundreds of millions of gallons to these rivers over the lifecycle of these projects.
“At Ted’s, our mission is one of passion and responsibility in doing the right things for our guests, our people and our planet,” said Co-founder and CEO, George W. McKerrow. “Restaurants use five times as much water as the average business. It is our responsibility to support water flow restoration in our local communities whenever possible. We know we’re only a small part of the solution, but we’re committed to partnering with other brands – acting responsibly, preserving what we can, and helping to raise consciousness of freshwater scarcity.”
The Colorado River provides drinking water to 36 million people and is the irrigation source for more than 5.5 million acres of farmland across seven states. Additionally, hydroelectric facilities along the river generate more than 4,200 million megawatts of generating capacity helping to meet the power needs of the West and offset use of fossil fuels.
Launched in 2009, BEF’s Water Restoration Certificate® Program represents a unique new standard for corporate water stewardship. Moving beyond traditional water conservation and re-use, the program provides companies a mechanism to fund innovative flow restoration projects aimed at wasting less, using less, and/or keeping more water in stream. This latest joint partnership between Ted’s Montana Grill and WhiteWave Foods marks a new stage of this program and demonstrates the potential collective impact of the corporate sector in supporting innovative methods to conserve and restore freshwater.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, a widely recognized leader in freshwater restoration for the past 12 years, reviews all WRC flow restoration projects to ensure optimum environmental benefit. Since 2009 the Water Restoration Certificate® Program has grown from three projects in the Pacific Northwest to 14 projects with more underway spanning seven states and Mexico and has restored more than 7.6 billion gallons of water to western rivers.
At Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF), we believe addressing the planet’s most pressing environmental challenges requires innovation, creative problem solving and discovering a new way of doing business that values the natural resources we depend on. We are entrepreneurs for the planet. Through a full suite of innovative energy, carbon and water solutions we are helping our partners—from the farmer to the corporation—redefine how business gets done. We help our partners meaningfully balance their environmental impact, invest in clean energy and carbon reduction, educate the next generation of clean energy leaders, and effectively and sustainably restore the health of our freshwater resources. www.b-e-f.org
An entrepreneurial nonprofit, Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF) is creating a more sustainable future by investing now in clean energy and fresh water. Customers who buy independently certified BEF Carbon Offsets and Renewable Energy Certificates support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and the development of new renewable energy facilities, while customers who buy BEF's Water Restoration CertificatesTM support the return of water to critically dewatered streams and rivers. All BEF customers and donors support long-term watershed restoration and renewable energy education for students and communities nationwide because BEF reinvests its net revenues to fund its Model Watershed and Solar 4R Schools programs. Since it was established in Portland, Ore. in 1998, BEF has been a pioneer in helping people and companies become better stewards of the environment. Learn more at www.b-e-f.org.
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