American Transmission Co.

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Blog | American Transmission Co. - Part 4

Stevens Point continues prairie restoration thanks to ATC

Stevens Point, Wis., continued restoring a prairie within Koziczkowski Park in 2020 thanks to a $2,500 grant from American Transmission Co.’s Pollinator Habitat program.

The city, along with its partners from the Aldo Leopold Audubon Society and the Bill Cook Chapter of the Izaak Walton League, seeded the prairie this summer and again this fall.

This is the second consecutive year the city has received a grant from ATC for the Koziczkowski Park prairie, which will create habitat for bees, butterflies and other pollinators. Last year the city and its partnership prepared the area, including removing invasive garlic mustard plants.

One of Stevens Point’s premiere bird watching locations, Kozcizkowski Park is adjacent to the 5.5-acre Godfrey and Maybelle Erickson Natural Area, an important “rest area” for many migratory birds like the scarlet tanager and Baltimore oriole, which is managed by the Aldo Leopold Audubon Society. The park’s half mile walking trail is part of the area’s 27-mile Green Circle nature trail.

ATC’s Pollinator Habitat Program promotes planting low-growing vegetation within a transmission line right-of-way to beautify communities in a way that doesn’t compromise the safety and reliability of the electric transmission system. The Program provides financial support to eligible cities, villages, towns, counties and tribes in ATC’s service area, as well as entities that allow public access to ATC rights-of-way (e.g. nature preserves, non-profits or public land managers).

Applications for the Pollinator Habitat Program are accepted July 1 through Sept. 30 each year, and recipients will be selected by the end of the calendar year. Awards range from $100 to $5,000. Since 2013, ATC has awarded approximately 240 communities and organizations with funds totaling more than $425,000. Additional information and program applications can be found at atc-GrowSmart.com.

ATC awards $65,000 to 25 recipients for planting projects

American Transmission Co. has collectively awarded $65,000 to 25 recipients across its service area to plant trees and low-growing vegetation through its Community Planting and Pollinator Habitat programs. Now in its eighth year, ATC has given more than 265 community awards for these projects totaling nearly $500,000.

Vegetation funded through the Community Planting Program requires that communities plant trees outside of high-voltage transmission line rights-of-way. Low-growing, compatible vegetation funded through the Pollinator Habitat Program allows entities to cultivate species within the rights-of-way that benefit pollinator food and habitat. Both programs help maintain electric reliability of the transmission system by keeping tall-growing vegetation outside the rights-of-way.

Recipients of both programs commit to comply with ATC’s maintenance standards for all current and future planting plans and urban forestry activities near high-voltage electric transmission lines.

Pollinator Habitat Program Recipients

“Part of the reason for the recent decline in pollinator populations is due to loss of habitat,” said ATC Environmental Project Manager Johanna Sievewright. “The Pollinator Habitat Program promotes vegetation that is both compatible with our vegetation management practices and it provides habitat for pollinators, which use the utility corridor as a flight path.”

The following entities received grants ranging from $2,500 to $5,000 to support pollinator habitat projects:

Community Planting Program Recipients

“We recognize that trees and vegetation are among the features that make communities special places for residents and visitors,” said ATC Vegetation Management Manager Michelle Stokes. “While we can’t allow trees or tall‑growing vegetation in our rights‑of‑way, ATC’s Community Planting Program encourages and supports communities to plant trees and vegetation that will beautify communities in a way that doesn’t compromise the safety and reliability of the electric transmission system.”

The following entities received amounts ranging from $800 to $5,000 for planting projects on public property, outside the rights-of-way:

Both the Community Planting Program and Pollinator Planting Program are part of ATC’s Grow Smart® initiative, which advocates for and provides suggestions of low-growing, compatible vegetation that can be planted adjacent to and within transmission line rights-of-way. Applications are accepted June 1 through Sept. 30.

ATC, Milwaukee Bucks tip off fifth season of Trees for Threes

There’s great news for Wisconsin schools today.

American Transmission Co. and the Milwaukee Bucks have announced our fifth consecutive season of partnership for the Trees for Threes program, which is deeply rooted in care for the environment and cause for the community.

Here’s how it works: for every 3-point shot that the Bucks score at home during the 2020-2021 season, an eligible Wisconsin school can earn a tree. That 3-point score tracker starts its uptick on Friday, Dec. 25 with the Bucks’ first home game against the Golden State Warriors at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee. While there won’t be any fans in attendance, we hope you’ll join us in cheering on the Bucks from the safety of your own home.

“Our partnership with the Milwaukee Bucks and the Trees for Threes program is a win for local schools and the environment,” said ATC Corporate Communications Manager Luella Dooley-Menet. “ATC supports initiatives that have a positive impact on the environment, education and health and well-being. Planting trees at schools aligns well with these initiatives, and we’re proud to continue our relationship with the Bucks for the fifth consecutive season to help accomplish this.”

Last year ATC donated 510 trees to 125 schools across Wisconsin thanks to the Bucks making the most home game 3-point shots of any team in the Eastern Conference and the third-most in the NBA overall. All 125 schools received a video message from Bango, the Bucks’ mascot, and an infographic to share with their students. Throughout the course of this partnership, ATC has donated more than 1,750 trees to make Wisconsin communities and schools a greener place.

Anticipating another big (albeit 10 game briefer) season, we think all those trees (and 3’s) are truly something to cheer about.

Click here to learn more information about the program, and to register.

Check out the recap video from last season’s “Trees for Threes” program on Bucks.com and the photos from past planting events in the image gallery below.

Ozaukee Washington Land Trust creates native prairie with support from ATC

The Ozaukee Washington Land Trust is creating a native prairie and enhancing existing pollinator habitat within the Riverbend Nature Preserve thanks to a $3,250 grant from American Transmission Co.’s Pollinator Habitat program

The Riverbend Nature Preserve, located in the Town of Trenton just east of West Bend, is one of the few large tracts of undeveloped land along the Milwaukee River in Washington County. OWLT plans to create a 1.5-mile diverse native prairie and enhance 4 acres of existing pollinator habitat within an ATC right-of-way at Riverbend.

In mid-November, OWLT employees and volunteers, including the stewardship team from Neighborhood House Milwaukee, conducted a prescribed burn to rid the area of non-native and invasive species. OWLT plans to reseed the area with native plants in the coming months.

Prescribed burning is a common prairie management tool. Many of Wisconsin’s native prairie grasses and flowers developed adaptations to survive fire. Their deep roots and buds beneath the soil enable them to withstand fire, while shallow-rooted, non-native plants succumb to the heat. Fire stimulates the growth of native plants, while also returning valuable nutrients to the soil.

The Ozaukee Washington Land Trust works to preserve the water resources, natural areas and working lands of Ozaukee and Washington Counties. The Trust offers services to property owners and communities throughout Ozaukee and Washington Counties in the areas of land conservation, education and stewardship. Since 1992, more than 6,200 acres of forests, wetlands and open space have been protected through acquisition and conservation easements.

ATC’s Pollinator Habitat Program promotes planting low-growing vegetation within a transmission line right-of-way to beautify communities in a way that doesn’t compromise the safety and reliability of the electric transmission system. The Program provides financial support to eligible cities, villages, towns, counties and tribes in ATC’s service area, as well as entities that allow public access to ATC rights-of-way (e.g. nature preserves, non-profits or public land managers).

Applications for ATC’s Community Planting Program and Pollinator Habitat Program are accepted July 1 through Sept. 30 each year, and recipients will be selected by the end of the calendar year. Awards range from $100 to $5,000. Since 2013, ATC has awarded approximately 240 communities and organizations with funds totaling more than $425,000. Additional information and program applications can be found at atc-GrowSmart.com.

Brewster Village, Peshtigo and Prairie du Chien add more trees thanks to ATC

Two Wisconsin cities and a county-run, skilled nursing facility recently added more trees to their communities thanks to grants from American Transmission Co.’s Community Planting Program.

Brewster Village, a skilled nursing facility owned by Outagamie County, used its $2,500 grant to plant approximately 10 trees on its grounds. The trees—a mix of catalpa, elm, lilac, linden, oak, and pine—were planted near a swing set and the courtyards.

The city of Peshtigo in Marinette County used its $1,500 grant to plant 10 trees along the Peshtigo River from Emery Avenue to Stibbe Lane. The linden, oak, pine, tamarack and willow trees will help offset the anticipated loss of green ash trees to the Emerald Ash Borer beetle.

The city of Prairie du Chien in Crawford County used its $2,000 grant to plant 32 trees in five different city parks—including the historic 240-acre St. Feriole Island Park. The trees—a mix of birch, linden maple and oak—will help replace the 64 ash trees the city recently lost to the Emerald Ash Borer. Members of the local Lions Club members volunteered to water the trees throughout the summer.

All trees were planted a safe distance from utility lines to support the safety and reliability of the electric system. The different tree species also help increase each city’s tree diversity, along with providing shade and additional natural beauty to the communities.

Our Community Planting Program  encourages and supports communities to plant trees and vegetation that beautify the landscape in a way that doesn’t compromise the safety and reliability of the electric transmission system. Since 2013, ATC has awarded approximately 240 communities and organizations with funds totaling more than $425,000.

ATC accepts applications from July 1 through Sept. 30, and award recipients are selected and notified by the end of the year. Awards range from $100 to $5,000. Additional information and program applications can be found at atc-GrowSmart.com.