Friday, December 01, 2006

Meijer donates $450,000 to fight spread of invasive plants

The Nature Conservancy and Meijer stores are joining forces to battle the spread of invasive plants.Leaders of the non-profit organization and the retailer were scheduled to outline the new plan earlier today an event in Grand Rapids, where Meijer is based. The effort is the first of its kind in the country for the Nature Conservancy, according to spokesperson Melissa Soule.

Under the partnership, Meijer is donating $450,000 during the next three years to discourage invasive plants and to protect Lake Michigan’s shoreline. Starting next spring, it will also put special tags on non-invasive plants it sells in Meijer stores and offer video and written materials to educate shoppers about the benefits of planting non-invasive species, whether they are native or introduced.

The 119 tagged non-invasive plants, such as purple coneflower and flowering dogwood, will comprise about 16% of the trees, shrubs and other plants that Meijer sells, according to Soule, who said Meijer will spend about a half-million dollars on educational materials in stores.

More info in the Detroit Free Press

Kudos to Meijer for making a gesture.

If Meijer really wants to help the ecology of the Great Lakes, they could stop building massive shopping centers with enormous parking lots that encourage sprawl. They could power all their existing stores with wind energy. They could expand their organic produce departments in all locations. They could buy locally grown produce. They could start installing outlets in the parking lots for electric vehicles. They could stop selling pesticides. They could stop selling violent video games. They could... Jesus, this list could go on for days. Thanks Hank for the invasive species thang, nice work.


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