Winning the award for individual effort was Diane Ross-Leech, manager of species protection for the utility, for her innovative work in ensuring Pacific Gas and Electric Company is in full compliance with all federal state and local species protection laws and regulations. Among her many accomplishments, Ross-Leech has led the company''s effort to develop and put in place a draft Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) governing much of the utility''s routine maintenance and operations activities in a nine-county area in the San Joaquin Valley, covering 25 wildlife and 42 plant species. It is perhaps the largest such plan of its kind - both in terms of geographic area as well as species coverage -to be filed anywhere in the nation.
Receiving the Clarke Award for best group effort was the Mokelumne Natural Resources Stewardship Team, which has been working since 2001 on a program to return to more natural stream flows, improve aquatic habitat, improve fish passage, and enhance river recreation opportunities along the Mokelumne River and its tributaries. In 2003, the team successfully breached or removed three small diversion dams, and completed major flow facility modifications at three dams. This accomplishment earned the prestigious Outstanding Stewardship of America''s Rivers Awards from the National Hydropower Association in 2002 and again in 2003.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company makes a $5,000 charitable donation on behalf of the individual and team Clarke Award winners, to the nonprofit environmental organization of their choice. Ross-Leech has selected Golden Gate Audubon Society to receive $5,000; the Mokelumne Natural Resources Stewardship Team has chosen to devote the funds toward the continued restoration of the river.
"The Clarke Awards recognize the efforts of those taking an innovative, collaborative, approach to their work, as we try not just to meet environmental standards, but exceed them," said Bob Harris, vice president of Environmental Affairs. "There are many examples of environmental leadership among PG&E employees. The Clarke award recognizes and increases awareness of these significant efforts."
Pacific Gas and Electric Company developed the Richard A. Clarke Annual Environmental Leadership Award in 2002 to honor those employees who demonstrate a commitment to, and accomplishment in the environmental arena. The award is named after the late Richard A. Clarke, Chairman and CEO of Pacific Gas and Electric Company from 1986 until his retirement in 1995. Clarke championed a variety of environmental initiatives at PG&E - from energy conservation to clean air programs to natural resource stewardship.
For more information about Pacific Gas and Electric Company''s commitment to the environment, please visit http://www.pge.com/environment.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company