Why We Restore and Manage Habitat

Fermilab is proud to be an effective environmental steward of the public land they manage for the Department of Energy.

Natural resource management on federal land is mandated in part by an array of statutes, Executive Orders, and Department of Energy (DOE) orders. Overarching stewardship of natural resources fulfills many of the outcomes intended by directives and regulatory action, such as clean air and water, wetland protection, and migratory bird and pollinator habitat preservation. According to DOE Executive Order 436.1A, facilities are required to “Manage land and natural resources to ensure the protection of land, water, and biodiversity (including pollinators and migratory birds), including deployment of nature-based solutions, recognizing the co-benefit of resilience enhancement such as wildfire risk reduction, preservation of ecosystem services, carbon sequestration, and minimization of regulatory restrictions associated with endangered and threatened species.”

The 6,800-acre Fermilab campus provides adequate land and facilities to accommodate the science mission. Land management in undeveloped areas is based on ecological science and stewardship values that enhance the environment. Not only does this approach contribute to the ecological integrity of the land, but it also offers a positive sense of doing the “right thing” for the environment to employees, users, and our neighbors.  This approach complements the vision of founding director Dr. Robert Wilson to surround the scientists studying the smallest particles of nature with a natural laboratory.  Fermilab has had the support of DOE and all Laboratory directors since and is proud to have been managing habitat for over four decades.

DOE and Fermilab are members of the Chicago Wilderness alliance and support their Biodiversity Recovery Plan for the region.