An anonymous donor has promised Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest a $50,000 matching donation to go toward the forest’s efforts in fighting a proposed natural gas pipeline.
Bernheim has been battling LG&E’s plan for a pipeline, which would snake through its land for three-quarters of a mile, since 2019. Currently, its legal challenges are pending. But, LG&E has secured the major permits it needs to construct the pipeline, according to WFPL.
LG&E has said that the pipeline is necessary to supply customers in the growing area surrounding Bernheim. Records obtained by WFPL showed that nearly all the additional gas would go to Beam Suntory, the company that makes Jim Beam bourbon.
In 2019, local philanthropists Gill and Augusta Holland made their own $50,000 matching donation to Bernheim. At the time, the research forest surpassed its goal, raising $153,000 on its own. Similar to then, Bernheim is attempting to raise $50,000 or over to match the more recent donor’s proposed gift.
“Our legal efforts against the pipeline and for land conservation continue,” said Bernheim Executive Director Dr. Mark Wourms in a statement. “This moral and legal effort is by no means over, and we intend to persevere against this threat with support from our generous community. With the climate crisis impacting our communities at an accelerating pace, this pipeline would negatively affect all of us and generations to come.”
The money raised will go toward the Land Stewardship and Protection Fund, “which supports legal fees, land stewardship, and other land protection activities,” according to Bernheim.
Those interested in donating can go here.
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