Mountain View Reclamation receives habitat certification

Staff Writer
Echo Pilot
Cheryl Shields and Brad Keller of Waste Management received their re-certification from Robert Johnson, president of the Wildlife Habitat Council at the Annual WHC Symposium.

Announced during the Wildlife Habitat Council's (WHC) 21st annual symposium Nov. 10 Mountain View Reclamation was one of 18 facilities to receive re-certification and 24 Waste Management (WM) sites that received new 'Wildlife at Work' certifications. These certifications recognize outstanding native habitat management and environmental education programs developed through partnerships with local organizations. 

“Our certified program provides the opportunity to work with our neighbors and local environmental groups on a project that is important to our community-enhancing the natural environment” said Cheryl Shields of WM. “These programs welcome children and adults to visit our site for a unique hands-on experience which they can't get in a classroom.”

The Mountain View Reclamation property covers approximately 750 acres in south central Pennsylvania and has historically been used for farming, an apple orchard operation and shale mining. As part of the Wildlife at Work program, WM employees, local scouts and Venture Crew members built and installed over 40 nest boxes for bluebirds, kestrels and wood ducks, as well as four bat roosting boxes. WM employees also placed two barn owl nest boxes to provide shelter for a species of growing concern. Throughout the program, scouts and WM employees maintain the nest boxes and all but one box had a successful hatching.

Mountain View is one of 45 WM locations receiving an award this year bringing the company's total number of sites with Wildlife at Work certifications to 73.

WM's sustainability goal is to win WHC certification for 100 sites and 25,000 acres by 2020.  To date, WM has set aside a total of 24,000 acres for wildlife habitat and has earned more WHC certified sites than any other participating company. The company has also been recognized with prestigious awards from the Wildlife Habitat Council in the past. In 2006, WM was the first organizational recipient of the Wildlife Habitat's President's Award, which is awarded for leadership attributes and an innovative strategic vision to building conservation programs within economically viable, sustainable communities; and in 2008 became the first recipient of WHC's William W. Howard CEO Award recognizing the company's efforts in conservation, education and outreach efforts.