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APPLY NOW FOR LOCAL ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION AND RESTORATION PROJECT FUNDING

Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus) feeding on milkweed – Photo byValerie Huff.

The Waneta Expansion Limited Partnership (WELP), a partnership between Fortis Inc., Columbia Power Corporation and Columbia Basin Trust, is accepting applications for the 2016 Waneta Terrestrial Compensation Program (WTCP). This program provides a total of up to $50,000 annually to projects in the Waneta area that promote conservation and restoration through research, physical works, and other on-the-ground or applied projects.  
 
The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2016. Visit columbiapower.org/WTCP for an application form and more information.
 
Eligible projects include research, species inventories, educational programs, development of management plans, habitat creation (restoration, rehabilitation), weed control, habitat protection and land acquisition.
 
“Individuals or groups with ideas that benefit the local ecology should apply to the Waneta Terrestrial Compensation Program,” said Teal Moffat, Environmental Manager at Columbia Power Corporation. “Over the past four years, we have seen results in action with projects getting off the ground because of this program.”
 
In 2015, Valerie Huff of the Kootenay Native Plant Society received funding from the WTCP to enhance and supplement milkweed populations in the Waneta area. Milkweed is a well-known, required food source for monarch butterflies and native pollinators. Together with Selkirk College students, Valerie planted a monarch butterfly waystation (stopping point along a migration route) just north of the Waneta Expansion Generating Station.  
 
“The Columbia River is a known flyway for monarch butterflies and milkweed plays a vital role as a food source and for egg-laying,” said Valerie Huff on behalf of the Kootenay Native Plant Society. “Funding from the WTCP allowed us to showcase the importance of milkweed not only for monarch butterflies, but for other native pollinators and beneficial insects as well.”
 
The 335 Waneta Expansion Generating Station is now in commercial operation. Columbia Power managed construction of the Waneta Expansion on behalf of WELP. Project benefits included the injection of over $300 million into the local economy through the purchase of goods and services and wages. Employment reached over 1,400 people. For more information please visit columbiapower.org/wanetaexpansion.