11/24/2004
PSO Receives International Habitat Conservation Award

OOLOGAH, OK., Nov. 24, 2004 -- Employees at Public Service Company of Oklahoma’s (PSO) Northeastern Power Station in Oologah received international recognition for their contributions to wildlife habitat conservation, environmental stewardship and increasing native biodiversity and achieving habitat certification at the power plant.
 
The recognition came from the Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) at its 16th Annual Symposium, Beyond Borders: Reconciling Wildlife Needs & Human Activity.
 
PSO’s Northeastern Power Station is committed to enhancing environmental stewardship initiatives on site. The site consists of approximately 1,300 acres, 1,000 of which are designated for wildlife. Habitat types include secondary forests, grasslands and wetlands. A creek that traverses through the property and two ponds provide additional benefits to waterfowl.
 
The main objective of the PSO’s wildlife management team is to improve wildlife habitat on plant grounds. The nest box project is the foundation of the site’s wildlife program. Boxes for screech owls, eastern bluebirds, kestrels and barn owls are erected throughout the site. Local Boy Scout troops and experts help construct and monitor the nest boxes. Future projects include creating nesting opportunities for purple martins and wood ducks, food plots, native plantings and a nature trail.
 
“We are thrilled and honored that PSO’s Northeastern Power Station has received this recognition. The power plant team has worked diligently over the years to establish a cohesive balance between the power plant and the environment where it is located,” said Bud Ground, PSO’s environmental affairs manager.
 
The PSO plant was one of 143 sites recognized at the 2004 Symposium for creating a habitat program. Since 1990, WHC has certified 353 programs worldwide. The certification program recognizes outstanding wildlife habitat management and environmental education efforts at corporate sites, and offers third-party validation of the benefits of such programs. Certification requirements are strict and require that sites apply for periodic renewal.
 
WHC was formed as a cooperative effort between corporations, communities and conservation organizations. Since then, its mission has evolved and provided many advances in creating sustainable wildlife habitat. “We congratulate Public Service Company of Oklahoma on its efforts to help advance our initiatives to restore and enhance our natural resources. It is with this support that we can create a more ecologically sound and mutually beneficial environment for all,” said Bill Howard, WHC President.

The Wildlife Habitat Council is a nonprofit, non-lobbying organization dedicated to increasing the quality and amount of wildlife habitat on corporate, private and public lands. WHC devotes its resources to building partnerships with corporations and conservation groups to create solutions that balance the demands of economic growth with the requirements of a healthy, biodiverse and sustainable environment. More than 2 million acres in 48 states, Puerto Rico and 16 other countries are managed for wildlife through WHC-assisted projects. For more information, visit WHC online at www.wildlifehc.org.
 
PSO, a unit of American Electric Power, is an electric utility company serving more than 505,000 customers in eastern and southwestern Oklahoma. Based in Tulsa, PSO has more than 4,000 megawatts of generating capacity and offers some of the lowest energy prices in the United States. PSO news releases are archived at PSOklahoma.com.

American Electric Power owns more than 36,000 megawatts of generating capacity in the United States and is the nation’s largest electricity generator. AEP is also one of the largest electric utilities in the United States, with more than 5 million customers linked to AEP’s 11-state electricity transmission and distribution grid. The company is based in Columbus, Ohio.


Amber McNeil
PSO Corporate Communications
918-599-2700
Vanessa Kauffman
Wildlife Habitat Council
301-588-8994

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