In the Rocky Mountains near Dillon, Montana, there’s a ranch teeming with wildlife. Down in Corpus Christi, Texas, there’s a 120-acre preserve of coastal marshland populated by more than 50 different species of birds. And in Rincon, Georgia, leopard frogs, wild turkeys and bobcats all roam freely across 150 acres of managed habitat.
Each year in Victoria, Texas, thousands of school kids learn about wetland ecosystems in an outdoor classroom in the heart of a constructed wetland. And on a river bank near New Augusta, Mississippi, elementary students learn about river ecology through an annual Discovery Day program.
While all these Koch locations are far apart and may seem disparate at first glance, there’s actually a thread that unites them. They are all manufacturing sites where we make the stuff that people use every day, and each site has a program that has achieved Wildlife Habitat Council Conservation Certification. Currently there are 13 Koch company sites with programs that are WHC-certified.
For those of us at Koch, habitat conservation is consistent with how we do business. Our unique business philosophy, Market-Based Management, drives us to use fewer resources to make our products, and to be responsible operators. Being responsible operators means there are no shortcuts — we are constantly innovating to eliminate waste and meet the expectations of our customers.
A key part of meeting expectations is investing in people and communities. Everyone at Koch is empowered to think like an owner. It’s this spirit of entrepreneurship that is at the root of our sites embracing habitat management programs and conservation education. We’ve developed working relationships with experts at local universities and the Wildlife Habitat Council — along with other conservation organizations — to help us grow and improve our habitat management efforts. These experts are integral in our conservation and education initiatives.
We’re very proud of our accomplishments and the employees who’ve made them sustainable. And in 2015, Koch received one of the Wildlife Habitat Council’s highest honors, the Conservation Education Award, in recognition of sustained conservation success and education outreach.
But we don’t do what we do for recognition. We do it because we are focused on making people’s lives better. And habitat conservation is one way for us to do just that. We will continue to apply our business philosophy and principles to benefit the natural areas around us, because it’s in our nature.