How Do You Save the Amazon Rainforest? Viridian Energy Says One (Make That 460) Native Trees at a Time

On Its Fifth Trip to the Mamori River Basin, the Socially Responsible Company Gets More than a Third of the Way to Its Goal of 5,000 Trees Planted

It's called "the lungs of the planet": the region where 20% of the world's oxygen is produced. But at current rates of deforestation, 56% of the Amazon's forests could be gone by 2030. So in 2011, when Viridian Energy was brainstorming about a location from which to launch its 7 Continents in 7 Years global initiative, the Brazilian rainforest was the natural place to start.

Since that initial trip, reforesting this crucial part of the world's ecosystem has become an ongoing commitment for the company, called, appropriately enough, The Amazon Preservation Project (APP). Working with a local biologist and native guides who are versed in the region's ecology, Viridian will return to the Amazon until its goal of planting 5,000 indigenous trees is reached. This Wednesday, 29 "voluntourists" comprised of Viridian leaders and their guests, returned weary but satisfied from the most recent, week-long journey.

It's one of many ways that Viridian Energy, which offers its customers a holistic portfolio of responsible energy solutions, differentiates itself from the pack. "You have to change your lens and ask yourself, "How can I make a difference in the world?" said Founder and CEO Michael Fallquist. There aren't many business models that allow the leaders of a company to work together in the rainforest.

But that goes with the territory at Viridian. I'm so proud of that, and of our people for their ability to work hard and tread lightly on the Earth."

Manager of Sustainability Hannah Wells, who just returned from her second trip to the region, concurs. "In the Amazon we work long days in intense heat, and step out of our comfort zone. But the teamwork and knowledge that we're doing something very meaningful makes it an incredibly fulfilling experience. People come back from our APP journeys with lifelong friendships, a whole new perspective on our lives in America, and a deeper understanding of our role as global citizens. Through these journeys, everyone can have the chance to experience what Viridian stands for in a very real and measurable way."

With the benefit of experience, the group has refined their process for planting so that each trip has become more productive. The 460 trees planted on this trip were 59 more than the record set in May 2013, bringing the overall total to 1,729 trees planted in the region.

The public is invited to join Viridian on their journeys to the rainforest. For more information about Viridian's Amazon Preservation Project, and for information on how to get involved, write to sustainability@viridian.com or visit www.viridiansustainabilityinitiative.com

About Viridian Energy
Founded with the vision of empowering consumers to be part of a significant, collective environmental impact by choosing Viridian as their energy provider, this socially responsible company connects with customers through a vibrant network of Independent Viridian Associates. Committed to sustainability, community action and global initiatives, Viridian Energy provides affordable electricity that is more than 50% renewable, natural gas with carbon offsets to mitigate usage and residential solar power to a range of customers throughout 15 states plus Washington DC. Learn more at www.viridian.com