Did you know the Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) has a number of initiatives to keep the agency sustainable and protect the environment? From planting native species to recycling old denim, DOC has some exciting sustainability updates to share.
The week of November 4, Coffee Creek Correctional Facility’s (CCCF) Habitat Restoration Crew was at Nestucca Bay Wildlife Refuge to transplant violas the crew propagated this year. In total, the crew planted 23,000 plugs of viola! Check out the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuges’ Facebook post for more photos. At the end of November, the CCCF Butterfly Program held a certificate ceremony for the Viola Crew, Plantago Crew, Butterfly Lab Technicians and the Habitat Restoration Crew. The butterfly program supports two endangered butterflies (Oregon Silverspot and Oregon Taylor’s Checkerspot).
On November 6, Snake River Correctional Institution’s (SRCI) Monarch Project released three Monarch butterflies to track their migration patterns. Adults in custody (AICs) rear the caterpillars, and when they emerge from their chrysalis, the Monarchs are tagged with a small paper dot containing a serial number and an email. When the migrating butterflies are found by monarch watchers in their migration location, these numbers are logged and tracked. Pretty neat! The project is a joint effort between DOC, Washington State University and the College of Western Idaho.
The Warner Creek Correctional Facility (WCCF) Sagebrush Crew was recently covered by a local newspaper, and you can read more about it here. AICs sowed sagebrush and bitterbrush seed in April, carefully watering, thinning and fertilizing to produce some of the highest quality product WCCF has seen so far! The crew grew a total of 31,256 plants, which were boxed up and collected by Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and their partners in Boise, Idaho, and California. AICs and DOC staff celebrated with a special certificate ceremony honoring all the hard work.
Oregon DOC recycles all kinds of materials too. In November alone, the agency recycled over 4,800 pounds of textiles, including the denim clothing worn by AICs. And so far this year, DOC has totaled over 100,000 pounds of textiles recycled! To read more about DOC’s sustainability efforts, check out this article on the Oregon Governor’s blog: Oregon Department of Corrections Keeps Oregon Safe — and Green.