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For Immediate Release

Contact

Richard Yost

richard.yost@bge.com

BGE Osprey Watch Program’s First Year Leads to Safer Birds, Increased Reliability

Program Allows Customers to Notify BGE of Nests Located on Electric Equipment

 

Baltimore, MD – (October 14, 2016) – Customers reported 23 osprey nests located on Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) electric equipment during the inaugural season of the company’s Osprey Watch program. March through September marks osprey season in the Chesapeake Bay region and with it the increased chance of electric outages caused by the birds or their nests.

"The first year of Osprey Watch has been a great success. By providing our customers with a way to help us protect ospreys and also prevent potential power outages, we are partnered with them in delivering smart energy," said Alexander Núñez, BGE’s senior vice president of regulatory and external affairs and member of the board of Audubon Maryland-DC. "BGE’s focused environmental work has been recognized by groups like the National Wildlife Federation and Wildlife Habitat Council. We will not stop, however, in seeking ways to be even better stewards."

The nests were found in Harford County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County and Anne Arundel County. Each nest was evaluated and either moved to a newly installed nest platform, shielded from electric equipment with protective material or removed if empty. Four nesting platforms were installed: two located at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, one at the Oyster Harbor Community in Annapolis and one in Pasadena.

"Providing reliable electricity is one of our basic responsibilities, but when we can pair this with keeping wildlife like ospreys safe, it turns into a win-win," said Chris Burton, BGE’s vice president of electric distribution. "BGE’s longstanding commitment to environment stewardship has always included a comprehensive plan to protect wildlife and Osprey Watch enables everyone to help ensure that ospreys have a safe nesting season on the Chesapeake Bay." 

Even in the off season, any customer who identifies a nest on or near utility equipment can let BGE know by following these steps:

    • If the pole is easily accessible, send the pole number, located on a placard near eye level on the pole.
    • If the pole is not easily accessible, send the nearest address to the pole and attach photos of the pole if possible.
    •  

Once a nest is reported, BGE will remove the nest if no birds or eggs are present. The nest will be relocated where possible. If the nest is inhabited, deterrents will be placed on the electric equipment to shield the birds and nests and mitigate the risks of contact.

 

Last year, BGE customers experienced the lowest frequency of total electric outages on record due to investments in infrastructure upgrades, enhanced maintenance and working with other Exelon utilities to share best practices. BGE has invested more than $6 billion in system upgrades since 2002, which is contributing to fewer outages and faster restoration when interruptions do occur.

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BGE, founded in 1816 as the nation’s first gas utility, is Maryland’s largest natural gas and electric utility. Headquartered in Baltimore, BGE delivers power to more than 1.25 million electric customers and more than 650,000 natural gas customers in central Maryland. The company’s approximately 3,200 employees are committed to the safe and reliable delivery of natural gas and electricity, as well as enhanced energy management, conservation, environmental stewardship and community assistance. BGE is a subsidiary of Exelon Corporation (NYSE: EXC), the nation’s leading competitive energy provider. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter, YouTube and Flickr.

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