R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Station
Ontario, New York, United States
Certified Gold through 2023
Transitioning Grassland (former yard)- Pollinator Area
shoreline of Lake Ontario
White Tailed Deer
Tree Swallow, Eastern Bluebird, House Wren
About the Program
Exelon Corporation operates the R.E. Ginna Nuclear Power Station, which is located on the shore of Lake Ontario in Ontario, New York, approximately 22 miles northeast of Rochester. The site provides habitat for a variety of animals including butterflies, white-tailed deer, bats, ospreys, wood ducks, tree swallows and eastern bluebirds. To support these native animal species, Ginna employees volunteer their time and services to create and maintain sustainable habitat for wildlife using over an acre of property. Mowed lawn has been restored to native pollinator-friendly habitat and shoreline enhancements preserve habitat for birds and other wildlife. Additionally, Ginna employees have made a commitment to keeping the Lake Ontario shoreline clean of litter.
Practices and Impacts
- Since 2016, turf grass lawn areas across the site, totaling just under an acre, have been transitioned into native grassland communities, designed to benefit pollinators including monarch butterflies. Employee volunteers and community groups work together to record the plant and pollinator species present in the area. On-site educational opportunities promote pollinator awareness to youth groups (Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and Big Brothers Big Sisters), high school students and other community members who visit the site.
- Beginning in 2007, Ginna employees have engaged in shoreline cleanup events. The primary type of litter found along the 400 feet of shorefront is plastic and the annual event is scheduled around the International Coastal Cleanup. Since 2017, litter cleanup data has been reported to the American Littoral Society.
- Since 2008, the Ginna site has authorized hunting to manage the white-tailed deer population’s size and health. Population counts through visual sighting (including those through trail cameras), tracks and vegetation consumption determines the appropriate annual harvest levels needed to sustain a healthy deer population, lowering the burden of habitat resources.
- Native passerine bird species are supported through the placement of artificial nesting boxes across the Ginna site. The team’s avian initiatives provide opportunities for local youth groups and school students to learn about the behavior of the eastern bluebird, house wren and tree swallow. The bird population is supported through the restored grassland habitat.
- Artificial nest boxes were also installed for wood ducks at the Ginna site. This project started with three boxes in 2016 and based on the success of those boxes, an additional box was added to the site in 2019.
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