Partnership contributes to the AZ Forest global initiative to plant and maintain 50 million trees worldwide by the end of 2025
WILMINGTON, Del. -- (Business Wire)
AstraZeneca has partnered with The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) to plant and sustain one million trees in the United States by the end of 2025. This initiative is part of the Company's flagship Ambition Zero Carbon program to decarbonize its global operations by eliminating, reducing and substituting for our greenhouse gas emissions, and become carbon negative across our value chain by 2030, in line with science-based targets. As part of its sustainability strategy, AstraZeneca is also putting nature at the heart of its work, investing in biodiversity through partnerships with local communities and wildlife experts.
The reforestation partnership with NFWF will help contribute to the restoration of water quality and wildlife habitats within the Delaware River Watershed, while at the same time helping to combat climate change by increasing carbon storage. Several additional plantings to support vital habitats in additional regions of the northeastern and southeastern United States will also be funded as part of this initiative. The new partnership, will fund tree plantings that maximize the dual role of carbon storage and habitat restoration, including by:
Planting streamside forests on farmland, in parks and residential communities
Restoring urban tree canopy in cities and towns
Restoring degraded forest lands
To kick off the partnership, 15 grants have been awarded that collectively will plant more than 118,000 trees over the next two years, including 10 grants announced through the Delaware Watershed Conservation Fund. These projects in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania will restore habitat for eastern brook trout, American eel, bog turtles, river herring and shad, and migratory songbirds. They also will support green infrastructure in urban communities.
"Sustainability is embedded in our organizational DNA and guides our commitment to improving the health of people, society and our planet. Through our AZ Forest initiative, we're engaged in reforestation programs with local partners around the world. We're so pleased to be playing our part and helping to restore forests, diversify wildlife habitats and improve water quality in the Delaware region to benefit community and ecological resilience," said Joris Silon, U.S. Country President, BioPharmaceuticals Business Unit, AstraZeneca.
The Delaware River watershed covers 13,539 square miles of land and water, running from the Catskills in New York through Pennsylvania and New Jersey, ultimately emptying into the Delaware Bay, where it forms the border between New Jersey and Delaware. The watershed is home to native brook trout, red knots, river herring, freshwater mussels, oysters and many other species that are economically, ecologically and culturally important to the region.
Urban and suburban waterways play a major role in the watershed's communities, with headwaters in neighboring rural areas. The river basin also provides drinking water to over 15 million people, including communities in New York City, Trenton, Philadelphia and Wilmington, which also is home to AstraZeneca's U.S. headquarters.
"Together with AstraZeneca, we are investing in projects that are good for climate change, good for fish and wildlife, and good for local communities," said Jeff Trandahl, Executive Director and CEO of NFWF. "It is exciting to see this work come together to address some of our most pressing environmental challenges by providing carbon storage, improving habitat and improving access to natural and recreational resources in under-served communities."
Learn more about sustainability at AstraZeneca including commitments and progress to date in the Company's 2021 Sustainability Report.
AZ Forest is AstraZeneca's initiative to plant and maintain 50 million trees worldwide by the end of 2025 to support global reforestation and ecological and community resilience through partnership with local communities, governments and non-profit organizations. Reforestation helps sequester carbon dioxide, prevent disease through combatting air pollution and supports the restoration of biodiversity. Planting trees also helps to reduce the risks of natural disasters, has social and economic benefits for communities, and promotes physical and mental wellbeing.
AstraZeneca is a global, science-led biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of prescription medicines in Oncology, Rare Diseases and BioPharmaceuticals, including Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism, and Respiratory & Immunology. Based in Cambridge, UK, AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries, and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. For more information, please visit www.astrazeneca-us.com and follow us on Twitter @AstraZenecaUS.
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