CHESAPEAKE, Va. – April 21, 2016 – In recognition of its continuing efforts to revitalize the Elizabeth River in Southern Virginia, the CITGO Chesapeake Terminal received its fourth Sustained Distinguished Performance Award this year from The Elizabeth River Project, a nonprofit that leads community environmental restoration efforts along the River.
Since partnering with The Elizabeth River Project in 2004, the CITGO Chesapeake Terminal has completed numerous environmental projects to achieve Model Level status, the highest level of pollution prevention and wildlife habitat enhancement efforts through the organization’s River Star rankings program, which recognizes businesses, schools and homes that voluntarily reduce pollution and participate in wildlife habitat projects.
“With the goal of restoring the Elizabeth River to the highest practical level of environmental quality by 2020, the Elizabeth River Project relies on the results-oriented efforts of the CITGO Chesapeake Terminal year after year,” said Pam Boatwright, Deputy Director and River Star Business Program Manager at the Elizabeth River Project. “The terminal’s initiatives, ranging from the installation of a living green roof to outreach at local elementary schools, have all led to tangible benefits within the Chesapeake area and for the Elizabeth River.”
The following key initiatives helped the terminal reach Model Level status in 2008, while earning four Sustained Distinguished Performance Awards in 2006, 2011, 2013 and 2016:
• Construction of a 3,000 square foot living green roof in 2009 on the CITGO Chesapeake Terminal office building and loading rack, believed to be the industry’s only green roof, installed in the Chesapeake area. Constructed of hardy sedum plants that store large quantities of water and requiring little to no maintenance post-installation, the green roof has eliminated more than 300,000 gallons of storm water runoff from entering the Elizabeth River and Chesapeake Bay watershed. This style of roof also helps to reduce energy use, thanks to the natural insulating qualities of the plants and soil.
• Conservation of wetlands, including two areas in the terminal where employees planted 5,500 native plants in 2004 and the conservation of three acres of wetlands north of the facility with The Elizabeth River Project in 2005.
• Funding towards the construction of the “The Elizabeth River: A Kids’ Paradise” playground in Paradise Creek Nature Park in 2015, where approximately 200 students will visit each week on field trips led by historians and educators from The Elizabeth River Project, the Children’s Museum of Virginia and Norfolk Naval Shipyard.
• Ongoing enhancements to the terminal property, such as the voluntary reduction of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), conversion to LED lighting and recycling of Petroleum Contact Water.
• Recruitment and mentorship of other local businesses to become part of the River Stars program, including industry peers Buckeye Terminals, Colonial Pipeline and TransMontaigne.
• Annual community outreach projects with Rena B. Wright Primary School in Chesapeake, including landscaping the school property, participating in Career Day and developing a Fossil Fuels/Natural Resources educational science lab for the students to enjoy.
“Environmental restoration and preservation are long-time priorities for CITGO, especially as we strive to fuel good in the local communities where we operate and do business, including the locations of our terminals across the country,” said Rick Esser, CITGO Vice President of Supply and Marketing. “The Chesapeake Terminal’s continued contributions to the Elizabeth River Project and recognition through various Sustained Distinguished Performance Awards demonstrate that efforts aimed toward benefiting the environment are truly making a difference.”
The Chesapeake Terminal’s ongoing environmental stewardship initiatives are part of the company’s larger environmental platform, which also includes Caring for Our Coast, a program boosting natural habitat restoration as well as science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education efforts. Since its launch in 2014, CITGO has committed resources for more than 40 projects involving more than 3,600 volunteers, including many CITGO employees, their families and friends.
For more information on the Elizabeth River Project, visit www.ElizabethRiver.org. To learn more about CITGO Caring for Our Coast and the company’s commitment to environmental stewardship, visit www.CITGOCaringForOurCoast.com.
About the Elizabeth River Project
Founded in 1991 by four citizens around a kitchen table, the Elizabeth River Project has grown to become the best-known environmental group in America for practicing a model of collaboration rather than confrontation. With a mission of restoring the Elizabeth River to the highest practical level of environmental quality through partnerships with businesses, government and citizens, Elizabeth River Project is noted for unique relationships, best illustrated through River Star Businesses. The River Stars Businesses program was started in 1997 for industries that voluntarily reduce toxics to and create or conserve wildlife habitat. Since then, River Stars have documented the reduction of 323 million pounds and the creation of conservation of 1,754 acres of wildlife habitat enhancement.
CITGO is committed to giving back to the local communities it serves through its network of locally owned CITGO locations. CITGO Marketers and Retailers in Virginia own and operate nearly 300 CITGO locations and are proud to support their communities. For more information on the positive impact of the locally owned CITGO stations, visit www.fuelinggood.com.
CITGO, based in Houston, is a refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals and other industrial products. The company is owned by CITGO Holding, Inc., an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., the national oil company of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. For more information, visit www.CITGO.com.