Google Supports Over 1,100 Acres of Longleaf Pine Restoration in East Texas

Google Supports Over 1,100 Acres of Longleaf Pine Restoration in East Texas

This initiative will restore the ecosystem, filter and produce freshwater, sequester carbon, increase biodiversity, and benefit the local community

TEXAS: Google will support the restoration of 1,100 acres of longleaf pine forest in the middle Trinity River watershed in East Texas. Longleaf pine is exceptionally beneficial for our water resources when managed with an open canopy and diverse understory ecosystem that works in parallel to recycle and filter water that passes through it. Effective management provides additional benefits for carbon sequestration, increases biodiversity, and benefits the local community. 

Facilitated by the Texas Longleaf Team, the longleaf pine restoration project will be implemented on Rock Creek Ranch in cooperation with the Tall Timbers Western Pineywoods Quail Program, with support from Texan by Nature. Activities will include herbicide application, mechanical removal of invasive species, prescribed fire, brush management, and planting approximately 180,000 longleaf pine trees. 

“Google takes great pride in supporting this collaborative effort to regenerate a substantial area of longleaf pine in the Trinity River watershed,” said Kate Franko, Google’s Regional Head of Data Center Public Affairs. “We’re excited to witness the growth of a thriving ecosystem in East Texas.”

This initiative is a result of project matching through the Texas Water Action Collaborative (TxWAC) and collaboration with Bonneville Environmental Foundation, through their Business for Water Stewardship program. Facilitated by Texan by Nature, TxWAC builds collaborative relationships to align goals, metrics, and project/funding timelines between conservation organizations, corporate entities, and communities – all working together to accelerate initiatives that benefit one of Texas’ most precious natural resources – water.

“The Texas Longleaf Team is excited to harness the power of partnership to restore this important ecosystem in yet another part of East Texas,” said Jenny Sanders, Texas Longleaf Team Coordinator. “In addition to the obvious biodiversity benefits, this critical funding will allow our team, with monitoring support from researchers at Stephen F. Austin State University and project management by Raven Environmental, to demonstrate how healthy ecosystems yield significant water quality and quantity benefits for all Texans.”

Longleaf pine forests historically spanned over 90 million acres in the southeastern United States, including East Texas, but certain land use practices and urbanization have significantly decreased the extent of longleaf pine forests. The Texas Longleaf Team was organized in 2010 to promote the restoration of this historic ecosystem on private and public forestlands in Southeast Texas. 

“We are thrilled to continue advancing conservation in collaboration with Texas Longleaf Team, Google, and Bonneville Environmental Foundation.” said Taylor Keys, Director of Programs at Texan by Nature, “Google’s increased support for longleaf pine restoration from 2023 to 2024 shows how local conservation partnerships play a critical role in corporate ESG strategy.”

Google’s support for this project enables the expansion of a contiguous, healthy Longleaf Pine ecosystem across the species’ historic range. This adds to existing longleaf pine restoration projects, such as the 2,000-acre Brushy Creek project that is supported by Google in collaboration with The Coca-Cola Foundation, Meta, Microsoft, and Silk (a Danone North American Brand). Promoting science-based conservation initiatives that enhance water accessibility and quality is crucial for the preservation of longleaf and the well-being of future generations.

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About Texas Longleaf Team
Texas Longleaf Team (TLT) shares their passion for restoration of the longleaf ecosystem in Texas through landowner and industry outreach and education, technical support, and cost-share programs that assist landowners in implementation of prescribed fire, planting and other beneficial management practices. The mission of TLT is to promote the maintenance and restoration of the longleaf pine ecosystem on private and public forestlands, including its cultural and economic values, through a collaborative network of diverse stakeholders and working groups. Learn more about the longleaf pine on the Texas Longleaf Team website.

About Tall Timbers
The mission of Tall Timbers is to foster exemplary land stewardship through research, conservation, and education. Known for their work on prescribed fire and bobwhite quail, Tall Timbers, a Florida-based non-profit, is active in East Texas with the development of the Western Pineywoods Quail Program and recent efforts to establish Prescribed Burn Associations across East Texas. Learn More on the Tall Timbers website.

About Texan by Nature
Texan by Nature (TxN) unites conservation and business leaders who believe Texas’ prosperity is dependent on the conservation of its natural resources. TxN, founded by former First Lady Laura Bush, acts as an accelerator for conservation groups and a strategic partner for business. TxN supports 140+ conservation organizations and has accelerated projects and programs that have impacted 7 million-plus people, 20 million acres, and all of Texas’ 254 counties Get involved and learn more at www.texanbynature.org and follow us on Facebook @TexanbyNature, Twitter @TexanbyNature, and Instagram @texanbynature for the latest.

About Bonneville Environmental Foundation
BEF is the most trusted, knowledgeable, and proactive partner on water projects in the U.S. Our Business for Water Stewardship™ team unlocks collective corporate action to accelerate real, measurable, and lasting solutions for water, nature, and business. Learn more and join us today at https://www.b-e-f.org/programs/business-for-water-stewardship/ 

About Google
Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. Through products and platforms like Search, Maps, Gmail, Android, Google Play, Google Cloud, Chrome and YouTube, Google plays a meaningful role in the daily lives of billions of people and has become one of the most widely-known companies in the world. Google is a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc.

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