Schneider Electric increases support for Host In Ireland’s “Orchards in the Community” initiative

During the course of its partnership with Host In Ireland, Schneider Electric has sponsored a total of 500 orchards, increasing biodiversity and green spaces for towns and cities across the country.

Schneider Electric has announced its participation in the DCs for Bees initiative, in association with Host In Ireland, for the third successive year. The “Orchards in the Community” initiative accompanies Schneider Electric’s commitment to the DCs for Bees Pollinator Plan, a collective plan of action led by Host In Ireland and executed by 48 partners from across the data centre industry. It aims to save Ireland's declining bee population and ensure its survival for future generations, along with other endangered species such as flying insects and butterflies.

To help protect bees, increase pollination, and support biodiversity, Schneider Electric is part of 73 companies that have pledged to contribute to the planting of over 3587 mixed fruit orchards across the country of Ireland. As part of the programme, 222 schools and colleges and 171 community groups from tidy towns, retirement homes, community centres, and local sports facilities have received and planted orchards in their communities.

Today these orchards provide vital green spaces in Ireland’s cities and towns and with 33% of the countries 99 wild bee species at risk of extinction, the new orchards will provide bees and other biodiverse creatures with vital food as they struggle when emerging from winter.

During the partnership, Schneider Electric has sponsored a total of 500 orchards equating to 2500 trees over the course of three planting years. In 2023 they have sponsored a further 100 orchards consisting of 3 apple trees, a plum tree, and a pear tree in each orchard. 34 orchards have been taken by employees and 66 orchards went to communities who had signed up for the initiative.

Communities who have benefited from the biodiversity benefits of the orchards include Kilmaine Tidy Towns, Monivea Tidy Towns, Gorey Community Schools, Abbeyleix Tidy Towns, Oaktree Court Residence Association, Dromahair Tidy Towns, Holy rosary College and Sustainable Community Area Network Milltown.

“Orchards are a focal point for communities to connect people with nature. Growing orchards in the community helps raise awareness of our connection to our food sources and play an important role in biodiversity and the plight of bees in Ireland,” said Garry Connolly, founder, Host in Ireland. “That spirit of community is alive and well with ‘Orchards in the Community’ as organisations like Schneider Electric come together with biodiversity groups, schools, colleges, Tidy Towns and others across Ireland to tackle challenges like biodiversity loss to save Ireland’s pollinators.”

“We’re proud to once again be partnering with Host Ireland and sponsoring the Orchards in the Community initiative and increase our support for its leading sustainability initiative” said Mark Yeeles, VP, Secure Power Division, Schneider Electric UK and Ireland “Driving sustainable change which can

be seen within the community is at the heart of our organisation, and we hope the orchards will create holistic ecosystems which will be beneficial for many years and generations to come”.

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