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Great Lakes Forever, Budweiser, and Anheuser-Busch Wholesalers Coast Into Partnership to Protect the Great Lakes
Friday, August 4, 2006

Budweiser coasters will be distributed to regional bars and restaurants to raise awareness of critical issues facing the Great Lakes

MADISON, Wis. (August 4, 2006) Anheuser-Busch, one of the world's largest brewers and a top recycler of aluminum cans, is joining Biodiversity Project to help protect the world’s largest fresh water resource – the Great Lakes. The promotion is part of a larger public education initiative by Madison, Wisconsin-based Biodiversity Project, called Great Lakes Forever. The initiative seeks to raise awareness of the Great Lakes and to protect the valuable, but vulnerable natural heritage of the region.

Now through the end of the year, Anheuser-Busch wholesalers will be distributing Great Lakes “awareness” posters and coasters to retail outlets in various states surrounding the Great Lakes (where legal). In addition, Budweiser will make a $10,000 donation to the Great Lakes Forever program for education and awareness programs that focus on protecting water quality. “Our greatest challenge is letting people know that the Lakes need our help now,” notes Jeffrey Potter, coordinator of the Great Lakes Forever program. “People in the Great Lakes states are proud of the Lakes and feel a strong personal responsibility to protect them,” he continues, “but the Lakes are so huge and have played such an important role in defining our region’s identity and history, that sometimes it’s hard to believe they’re vulnerable.”

Great Lakes Forever is a three-year old public education program that includes educational signage in Wisconsin State Parks, radio and print awareness ads, educational beer coasters, and a Web site – www.greatlakesforever.org – where residents can learn more about the lakes, threats to their health, and ways they can get personally involved.

According to Potter, the problems facing the Lakes are complicated.

“Our Great Lakes are threatened by invasive species, wetland loss, pollution and more, but there’s a lot we can do to help them. We can all take responsibility for the lakes at home, at the beach, and in our communities. We hope that this campaign will help empower more people to take action to protect this international treasure.”

This is the second year Anheuser-Busch has supported the Biodiversity Project with Great Lakes coasters. Last year, the Michelob Golden Light brand produced similar coasters that were distributed in certain states. This year the Budweiser brand is supporting the program and expanding beer coaster distribution to various Great Lake states.

“Each day, we depend on the Great Lakes for water, food, transportation, and recreation,” said Paul Simmons, Budweiser brand manager. “Partnering with Biodiversity Project on this program will help raise awareness for the environmental issues that threaten the Great Lakes. Helping protect the Lakes now will ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy this national treasure the same as we do today.”

Peter Alexander, Biodiversity Project's executive director, was pleased to receive the brewer's support, noting “The Great Lakes are vital to our region's economy and way of life, but few people realize how fragile they are. We appreciate Anheuser-Busch’s commitment and assistance in getting the message out that each person can play a role in protecting and restoring our Great Lakes.”

To learn more about the program and how you can help protect the Great Lakes, visit the Great Lakes Forever website – www.greatlakesforever.org.

Jeffrey Potter
Director of Communications Programs
Biodiversity Project
214 N. Henry St. #201
Madison, WI 53703
P: 608-250-9876 x12
F: 608-257-3513


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