CONTACT: Juli Kern, Marketing Director
PHONE: (239) 461-2424
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE E-MAIL: email@example.com
CYPRESS TREE PLANTING AT FGCU TO MAKE
SOUTHWEST FLORIDA EVENT CARBON NEUTRAL
FORT MYERS, FL (January 21, 2009) – In an effort to make the Southwest Florida Green Futures Expo and Energy
Options Conference a carbon neutral event, Charlotte County Government and event sponsor, Johnson Engineering, have
teamed up to plant 23 Cypress trees at Florida Gulf Coast University, at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, January 21, 2010, to offset
the event’s carbon emissions.
The attendance at the first annual Green Futures Expo and Energy Options Conference proved this event was an
overwhelming success, and revealed this region is on its way toward being known as the ‘Green Coast’. Renowned speakers
including Patrick Birley from the European Climate Exchange, Cisco DeVries from Renewable Funding LLC, Kevin Lynn
from the Department of Energy, Syd Kitson from Babcock Ranch, et. al. provided Southwest Floridians a world-class level of
discussion and information exchange on the importance of renewable and alternative energy and how the industry is poised to
redefine economic development for the state and the nation in the near future. Also present during the conference were local
and regional businesses that are making their mark in various areas of the renewable energy and sustainable development
arena. Overall, the first annual Green Futures Expo and Energy Options Conference was timely and well-positioned as it
showed how the private, public and various sectors of the community can come together to create synergy and bring in
overall positive development for the region.
Participants on both days completed carbon assessment questionnaires to help Johnson Engineering calculate the event’s
carbon footprint. Based on the 298 Green Expo responses and 126 participants from the Energy Conference, the total
emissions were estimated at close to 30 metric tones of carbon dioxide (MtCO2). Commercially available carbon offset
credits are generally running $5 - $10 per MtCO2 - which means to offset the emissions from the event, and promote being
carbon neutral, the cost would be somewhere in the neighborhood of $150 - $300. In an effort to keep the carbon offsets in
the region, Charlotte County has partnered with FGCU to plant 23 Cypress trees, which over their lifetime will continually
capture and sequester carbon from the atmosphere. Donations collected at the event to promote a carbon reduction project in
Florida will be used in part to purchase the trees from a local Charlotte County nursery.
Johnson Engineering and Charlotte County are working closely with FGCU faculty and staff, and the FGCU
Anthropology Club to organize the planting. The FGCU students are enthusiastic about volunteering to assist with the
planting, which supports the University’s mission to practice and promote environmental sustainability, nurture community
partnerships and value public service.
Charlotte County, Johnson Engineering and the event sponsors, Waste Management, The Mosaic Company and
Innovation Future Energy Corporation, are excited about the promising future of the ‘Green Coast’. Waste Management of
Charlotte County, the event’s platinum sponsor, services more than 80,000 residences and 2,400 commercial customers in the
county. Waste Management Green Squad’s National Director, Jim Hall, was the keynote speaker at the conference. They
work toward providing sustainability solutions to help organizations create efficiency reduce costs, and enhance branding.
Founded in 1946, Johnson Engineering provides a complete range of services in land development, planning, landscape
architecture, water resources, environmental consulting, transportation, utilities, surveying and mapping, and geographic
information systems. The firm has offices in Fort Myers, Port Charlotte, LaBelle, Naples, and Land O’Lakes. With more than a
half century of experience, one of our strongest assets is our comprehensive knowledge and familiarity with the Southwest Florida
region and our ability to apply this to projects throughout the State of Florida.
For further information, contact Juli Kern (239) 461-2424 or visit www.johnsonengineering.com.