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Environment & Energy Report

Protecting Species Before Government Steps in Is Group’s Goal

Aug. 8, 2019, 9:31 AM

Southern Company’s land holdings and power line rights-of-way cover large swaths of longleaf pine forest—habitat that has diminished across the Southeast because of development and logging.

To prevent the trees’ habitat from declining to the point that they and the species that depend on them would merit increased state and federal protections, Southern spent nearly $8 million on restoration projects between 2004 to 2018.

Restoring 1.5 million acres of longleaf pine forest, which provides habitat for the red-cockaded woodpeckers, gopher tortoises, and other species that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service considers at risk, was an early...

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