Press Release: Reforest the Tropics and New England Biolabs®, Inc. enter into agreement to plant 100 hectares of forest to offset carbon emissions
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Reforest the Tropics and New England Biolabs®, Inc. enter into agreement to plant 100 hectares of forest to offset carbon emissions
Mystic, CT and Ipswich, MA (August 15, 2019): Reforest The Tropics (RTT), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Mystic, Connecticut and New England Biolabs, Inc. (NEB®), a global leader in the production of reagents for the life science industry, announce that they have entered into an agreement to plant 100 hectares (247 acres) of new tropical forest in Costa Rica. This project will offset the emissions generated by NEB’s headquarters, located in Ipswich, MA, which houses over 450 of NEB’s employees.
The reforestation project will conservatively sequester over 50,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in the initial 25-year contract period. The forest carries the potential to capture and store an additional 50,000 metric tons of CO2 in a subsequent 25-year contract term. The project will offset approximately 20% of the current emissions generated by NEB’s operations in Ipswich.
In addition to offsetting a significant portion of NEB’s carbon footprint, the project will create an important habitat for countless animals in Costa Rica, including some threatened and endangered species. Local communities in Costa Rica will benefit from improved water quality, job creation, and other economic opportunities as well.
“At NEB, we continuously advocate for and implement ecologically sound practices and environmental sustainability in order to protect our natural resources, both locally and globally,” states Jim Ellard, CEO of New England Biolabs. “We are excited to partner with Reforest the Tropics in an effort to offset emissions generated by our Ipswich, MA facility, as well as promote reforestation efforts worldwide.”
Tropical reforestation represents one of the most effective, yet underappreciated, strategies for climate change mitigation. Indeed, a July 2019 study in Science identified forestry as “By far…the top climate change solution in terms of carbon storage potential.” Using the RTT mixed-species model, the project will achieve double the carbon capture of most common reforestation approaches, while additionally generating competitive income for participating landowners.
RTT Executive Director, Greg Powell, emphatically welcomes NEB’s participation. “New England BioLabs is a world-class business with an incredible team of scientists who carefully vetted every element of our program. Having satisfied NEB’s scrutiny, we are more confident than ever to engage potential partners armed with positive responses to any foreseeable question about the merits of our approach. We are excited to demonstrate the power of our forestry model to NEB and the world.”
This project, which is only part of NEB’s efforts to minimize its environmental impact, should set a powerful example for other businesses who are seeking an effective, efficient, and safe methods to embrace local and global sustainability.
About New England Biolabs
Established in the mid 1970’s, New England Biolabs, Inc. is the industry leader in the discovery and production of enzymes for molecular biology applications and now offers the largest selection of recombinant and native enzymes for genomic research. NEB continues to expand its product offerings into areas related to PCR, gene expression, library preparation for next generation sequencing, cellular analysis, epigenetics and RNA analysis. Additionally, NEB is focused on strengthening alliances that enable new technologies to reach key market sectors. New England Biolabs is a privately held company, headquartered in Ipswich, MA, and has extensive worldwide distribution through a network of exclusive distributors, agents and eight subsidiaries located in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, Singapore and the UK. For more information about New England Biolabs visit www.neb.com.
NEW ENGLAND BIOLABS® and NEB® are registered trademarks of New England Biolabs, Inc.
About Reforest The Tropics
Reforest The Tropics (RTT) is a 501(c)(3) organization boasting over 50 years of research experience in the development of the world’s most powerful carbon-capturing forests. RTT’s mixed-species forestry program is approved by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and has received formal endorsements from the US Environmental Protection Agency as well as the Costa Rican Ministry of the Environment and Energy (MINAE). RTT plants mixed-species forests which create important habitat, sequester considerably higher quantities of carbon dioxide equivalent than typical models, and encourage long-term participation with partnering farmers through the generation of a competitive income. RTT complements its forestry program with a comprehensive Climate Change Education Initiative offered to students throughout New England.
Deana D. Martin, Ph.D.
Marketing Communications Manager
New England Biolabs
240 County Road
Ipswich, MA 01938
‘Ex-Reducer Hugh Birdsall reaches out to youth with Reforest the Tropics environmental group’
‘When New London pub rockers The Reducers toured Japan in 2004 and guitarist/vocalist Hugh Birdsall looked out from a Tokyo stage at a venue stuffed with screaming young fans, he probably figured it was as close as he’d ever get to living a Beatles/”Hard Day’s Night” mob-adulation moment.
That’s probably still true.
But the satisfaction Birdsall feels today, as an educational consultant for the environmental group Reforest the Tropics, speaking to classrooms full of young students about climate change, is an even more important and resonant experience.
Birdsall says, “The planet is in trouble. We are in trouble. But it’s one thing to alert someone to an external crisis and quite another thing to look inward and find out what our relationship to the planet is. That’s what I try to convey to students and, ultimately, it’s up to them to answer that question. But I can ask, ‘Does the planet belong to us or do we belong to the planet?'”
Reforest the Tropics is a Mystic-based nonprofit organization that works with farmers in Costa Rica to plant trees on their land to help offset carbon dioxide emissions. The group is sanctioned by the United Nations and works to mitigate climate change by sustainable forestry and long term carbon sequestration. Part of their efforts involve conducting programs and workshops with more than two dozen schools across Connecticut including both the New London and Norwich magnet schools. These efforts have resulted in several school- and student-sponsored tree-growing projects in the region.’
Read the full article here.
The New York Times recently mentioned Reforest the Tropics and its Director, Dr. Herster Barres, in an article focusing on a local chapter of GreenDrinks International, a social networking group of eco-minded professionals. Read the NYT article here.
Also, read a related posting on CT Green Scene here. CT Green Scene is a green-minded web site edited by Heather Burns-DeMelo, a co-organizer of the Fairfield County GreenDrinks and a friend of Reforest the Tropics.