The “Bee Czar” Embraces Sustainability, Thanks to Green Mountain Energy Sun Club
American Honey Bee Protection Agency added solar array, two electric vehicles
COMBES, Texas, November 13, 2023 /3BL/ - The American Honey Bee Protection Agency (AHBPA) is embracing renewable energy with the installation of a ground-mounted solar array at its honey packaging facility and adding two electric vehicles to their fleet thanks to a grant of more than $200,000 from Green Mountain Energy Sun Club.
The 54-kW solar array will offset 87 percent of the building’s energy needs and save nearly $445,000 in electricity costs over the next 25 years, which is equal to relocating 1,800 beehives. Sun Club’s donation also funded two Kia EV6 electric vehicles that will help the organization reduce the environmental impact of their operations.
“At Green Mountain Energy, we recognize the importance of protecting the environment and the essential role that honeybees play,” said Mark Parsons, vice president and general manager for Green Mountain Energy. “We’re honored to support the American Honey Bee Protection Agency by adding more sustainable elements to their mission to protect wild honeybees.”
In 2006, Walter Schumacher, also affectionately known as the “Bee Czar,” created the Central Texas Bee Rescue by opening his personal property to bees from local residents seeking an eco-friendly solution to their unwanted honeybee infestation or swarm issues. In 2012, Schumacher established the American Honey Bee Protection Agency.
"The AHBPA is committed to humanely relocating unwanted bee hives to bee sanctuaries where we help them to thrive," said Walter Schumacher, founder and chief executive officer of the American Honey Bee Protection Agency. "We are grateful to Green Mountain Energy Sun Club for their generosity and look forward to training teams of Bee Wranglers across Texas, the rest of the country, and eventually, the world."
The agency worked with Texas lawmakers to pass an ordinance to provide for the relocation of wild or abandoned bees that do not threaten human or animal health or interfere with the normal use or enjoyment of public or private property. The agency also played a vital role in passing a statewide resolution in 2015, making the western honeybee the state pollinator of Texas, in hopes of bringing more awareness to the importance of bees in the Lone Star state.
Most recently, Discovery Channel began producing a show about their efforts. After the completion of the first season of “Bee Czar,” the team purchased an 8,000 square-foot building to serve as their honey packaging facility, located in Combes, Texas, in the Rio Grande Valley.
In addition to facilitating the rescue of honey bees, AHBPA offers a vocational training program for veterans. The organization teaches veterans how to remove honey bee hives and swarms and how to take care of them once they are relocated to a bee sanctuary. Beekeeping has been recognized as therapeutic for those with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
To support more nonprofits like this one, Green Mountain Energy invites its customers and employees to contribute and champion sustainability for people and for the planet.
About Green Mountain Energy Sun Club
Green Mountain Energy is inspiring hope, motivating action through the use of clean energy, and advancing sustainable communities through the work of Green Mountain Energy Sun Club. Since its founding in 2002, Sun Club® has donated more than $13 million to 156 nonprofit organizations across Texas and the Northeast. Sun Club collaborates with nonprofit organizations on projects that focus on renewable energy, energy efficiency, resource conservation, and environmental stewardship. To learn more about Green Mountain Energy and Sun Club or to apply for a Sun Club grant, visit greenmountain.com/sunclub.
About American Honey Bee Protection Agency
The AHBPA is devoted to "saving the world, one sting at a time." We are a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was founded in 2006 with one goal: to provide an eco-friendly solution for unwanted bee hives or swarms to our fellow Texans by humanely removing and relocating the bees instead of killing them. Our mission is to pollinate minds and convey the importance of saving wild honey bees from extinction through the integration of wild bees into urban environments.
AHBPA Media Contact