Georgia Black Bear Sighting / Clinchfield Cement Plant
September 8, 2016.
Through an active partnership with the University of Georgia, the Clinchfield Cement Plant is collecting DNA samples from black bears onsite for important conservation research
In partnership with the University of Georgia (UGA) and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the Clinchfield Cement Plant is helping monitor the central Georgia black bear population as they travel across public and private lands. The research project is headed by UGA’s Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources.
As a major land owner in the Ocmulgee River basin (a popular area for black bears), CEMEX Clinchfield conservation team has been involved in three successful years of data collection. Every Friday, from May to September, a graduate student from UGA and members of the Clinchfield team check and maintain the bear monitoring stations to collect hair samples from black bears passing through the area for DNA analysis. The research has resulted in a robust estimate of density and abundance across the geographic extent of the black bear range.
The Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) has expressed interest in constructing under-highway tunnels for bears to use. This research will provide a better understanding of the current situation to help decrease bear-vehicle collisions and will benefit the protection of wildlife in Georgia.
Through diligent and responsible environmental stewardship, the Clinchfield Cement Plant has earned since 2014 the Conservation Certification from the Wildlife Habitat Council. The Plant continues to promote nature conservation with employee participation, expert partners and educational opportunities. The Plant has many employees that love to hunt, fish and just be outdoors, which makes it easy for employees to care and value the abundance of wildlife onsite.
Furthermore, 2016 marked the tenth consecutive year that the Clinchfield Plant achieved ENERGY STAR® Certification for their efforts in energy efficiency and sustainability. It is one of only two plants in the United States to reach that milestone.
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