Arbor Day initially started in the late 1800’s in response to a lack of trees, which meant that residents on the plains of Nebraska didn’t have the trees as windbreaks to keep soil in place, for fuel and building materials, and for shade from the hot sun. In the intervening years, this movement has spread across the globe.
Recently Marathon Oil wrapped up a project with our partners at Texan by Nature to plant 100 trees on the Kenedy ISD campus in our Eagle Ford asset. The first set of trees was planted last November with the help of Trees for Houston, a longtime partner of MRO. A group of volunteers planted 35 trees at the elementary school campus, circling the parking lot and playground.
Early this month, a group of 19 volunteers from Marathon Oil returned to Kenedy to plant an additional 65 trees. This time the trees were added near the administrative building, around the junior/high school campus and more at the elementary school. The goal of this program is to improve environmental and public health by increasing shade, improving air quality, reducing carbon, providing nature-based education and increasing biodiversity through tree planting.
Marathon Oil is no stranger to working with organizations who focus on tree planting efforts. Over the years we’ve engaged with different partners to both support their wider efforts or to do direct tree planting projects. We have supported Trees for Houston (TFH) for more than a decade; as their purpose has expanded to growing, planting and distributing trees to beautify our schools, parks, esplanades, bayous, streets and trails. We volunteered alongside TFH in November 2021 to plant trees at Spring Shadows Elementary, a school close to our headquarters in Houston. Anytime we head back to the school to volunteer, some of our original tree planters check in on the 30 trees we planted. We take pride in seeing those trees continue to grow as we find more opportunities to grow our partnership with the school.
In North Dakota, we also support the North Dakota Petroleum Foundation’s (NDPF) Planting for the Future program. About 70 percent of North Dakota’s land is privately owned, so the program’s goal is to work with industry, wildlife groups and private landowners to create large-scale tree and shrub plantings on private land that will serve as habitat for future generations. This is achieved by providing trees to landowners at no-cost in exchange for them assisting with site preparation, equipment usage, planting and care and maintenance of plants. In 2022, the NDPF worked with 23 different landowners, planting 75,000 trees to aid in conservation and habitat efforts. While we are just one of many sponsors of this program, we see major impacts of working alongside our industry peers to support this work.