FULL-CIRCLE ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP
In the course of our daily work, ITC integrates a sustainable approach to the environment, enabling us to contribute to the well-being of the communities we serve. This ethic begins in our workplaces and extends to building, operating and maintaining our transmission systems.
Environmental Management System: Our environmental stewardship activities are driven by an ISO-14,001-based environmental management system across our operations.
ITC IN THE NEWS
“ITC Commits 98,000 acres to Monarch Butterfly Habitat”
In keeping with a longtime commitment to conservation efforts and good land stewardship for the communities it serves, ITC has enrolled 98,000 ACRES ACROSS SIX STATES in a federal program to protect and grow habitat for the threatened monarch butterfly.
“Rights-of-Way Are for the Birds: Managing Power Line Corridors to Help Wildlife” – Electrical Contractor (June 2021)
“Low-profile native plant communities also benefit local wildlife, such as songbirds and pollinators; contribute to corporate sustainability initiatives; lower the site’s carbon footprint; beautify the landscape; and reduce long-term maintenance costs.” READ THE ARTICLE, featuring Mike McNulty, ITC Environmental Manager.
STEWARDSHIP TRAINING AWARD
ITC has received the 2021 Wildlife Habitat Council Training Award for our Transmission Line Right-of-Way at Tomlinson Arboretum in Clinton Township, Michigan. The training award recognizes the highest scoring projects related to habitat or species support.
The Tomlinson Arboretum project is an example of ITC’s support of native species identification, invasive species control and adaptive management within our power line right of way. Watch the video below to hear ITC Environmental Manager Mike McNulty and ITC Maintenance Permitting Specialist Gary Kirsh accept this award on behalf of our company.
STEWARDSHIP AT WORK
Our commitment to the environment starts with our employees, who have embraced waste reduction, conservation and habitat projects across ITC. In the course of our daily work, ITC integrates a sustainable approach to the environment, enabling us to contribute to the well-being of the communities we serve.
MANAGING INVASIVE SPECIES AND PROMOTING NATIVE VEGETATION
Responsible management of the natural space under and around transmission corridors can accomplish more than the main objective of maintaining safe and reliable electric service. This work can result in diverse, stable, natural greenways where grasses, wildflowers and low-growing shrubs thrive, and with less environmental disturbance. ITC’s environmental team has developed protocols for reducing the potential spread of invasive species and for managing invasives should they become established in our transmission corridors. LEARN MORE.
ITC WAREHOUSE RAIN GARDENS
ITC has installed rain gardens featuring native plants at three warehouses in Iowa and Michigan to help address the environmental issue of stormwater runoff. Precipitation runoff from urban rooftops, driveways, yards and streets can carry pollutants directly to rivers and streams without any treatment. LEARN MORE.
Pollinator habitat creation and restoration
Pollinators play a role in more than one-third of the world’s crop production. ITC is restoring and converting portions of its transmission corridors and other properties to native grasses and forbs, with an emphasis on providing habitat for pollinators such as butterflies, bees and birds. LEARN MORE.
STEWARDSHIP STARTS AT HOME
ITC’s award-winning Novi headquarters campus encompasses 92 acres featuring a naturalized transmission corridor, diverse woodlands, open green space, wetlands, a nature trail and a large pond. We maintain these grounds under sustainable environmental principles involving employees and the local community through educational outreach programs.
Our Environmental Team hosts a number of environmental initiatives. These include the Great Backyard Bird Count, to track migratory patterns and trends across the U.S. for the National Audubon Society, and the Michigan Vernal Pool Project to observe the wildlife and vegetation occurring in and near the vernal pools onsite.
Other habitat projects at ITC’s headquarters include the installation and maintenance of a corridor demonstration garden and pollinator gardens planted with native species, invasive species removal, monitoring of bluebird nesting boxes and bat roosting boxes, installation and monitoring of wildlife trail cameras, and annual flora and fauna surveys.
We have a longstanding relationship with the Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) to promote environmental stewardship at our headquarters. ITC holds 13 WHC Conservation Certifications for programs in Michigan and Iowa. Our efforts garnered the 2015 Pollinator Advocate Award from the WHC. The award, presented in collaboration with the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign, recognizes ITC’s land management practices to support birds, bees, butterflies, moths and bats around its headquarters and through community partnerships.
PLANNING AND CONSTRUCTING TRANSMISSION
When planning transmission projects, we include environmental assessments and apply best practices for wetlands, threatened and endangered species and other sensitive habitats. By incorporating these factors in the beginning, we can adjust the placement or timing of construction to avoid or limit the environmental impact.
OPERATING AND MAINTAINING TRANSMISSION
Responsible management of the natural space under and around transmission corridors accomplishes more than the main objective of maintaining safe and reliable electric service: This work results in diverse, stable, natural greenways where grasses, wildflowers and low-growing shrubs thrive.
NATIVE PRAIRIE RESTORATION
ITC is supporting work by states and local communities to address declines in natural lands and habitats, including native prairies. Native prairie ecosystems – large, open areas of grassland which support a vast number of plants and animals – have been virtually eliminated from their historic range across the Midwest. LEARN MORE.
VEGETATION MANAGEMENT FIELD EDUCATION
ITC’s environmental team conducts annual sessions focusing on field identification of rare plant and wildlife species, the vegetation characterizing their preferred habitats, and unique landscape ecosystems. Invasive species identification and recognition of common native plant species typical of different ecosystem types also are addressed. LEARN MORE.
Trees and high-voltage power lines are a hazardous combination, so ITC maintains an integrated vegetation management program to protect electric reliability and public safety. LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR APPROACH TO VEGETATION MANAGEMENT
ITC has been widely recognized for its commitment to environmental stewardship, and has been honored by the Arbor Day Foundation, Environmental Protection Agency, Iowa and Michigan Departments of Natural Resources, and the Wildlife Habitat Council, among others. Learn more:
FLEET VEHICLE IDLE POLICY
IT ONLY TAKES 10 MINUTES TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
10 minutes per day. That’s all it takes to make a huge difference for the environment.
In 2014, ITC implemented a Fleet Vehicle Idle Policy designed to reduce operational costs, decrease adverse environmental impacts, and further ITC’s commitment to responsible business practices by reducing idling by 10 minutes per day per vehicle. The policy applies to all light-, medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, and off-road equipment. The result? In the last year, ITC has reduced excessive idles (defined as events greater than 30 minutes) by about 50%, thereby reducing diesel fuel consumption by more than 10,000 gallons.
All vehicles emit chemicals and particulates that are harmful to human health in the course of normal operation. Reducing idle time greatly decreases the amount of dangerous emissions, which increase the overall environmental performance of the company and decreases harmful environmental effects to the public and employees.
We understand that we cannot eliminate all idles, but we can aim to eliminate the unnecessary idling of our vehicles. Some vehicles require the engine to run in order for certain ancillary equipment to operate, such as the boom/bucket on a bucket truck. Essentially, every effort should be made to limit idling.