Spire gives back to the community

Published 4:42 pm Thursday, September 1, 2022

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By NOAH WORTHAM | Staff Writer

NORTH SHELBY – Spire employees participated in a cleanup of the Cahaba River on Tuesday, Aug. 30 and Wednesday, Aug. 31.

“We’re always trying to find ways to give back and get involved in the community,” Communications Manager Aaron Schmidt said. “We try to find a bunch of volunteer opportunities to encourage our employees to get out.”

Employees of Spire met at 9 a.m. near Cahaba River Road off of U.S. 280, before launching off in canoes.

The Cahaba River Society field programs director, Wil Rainer, accompanied Spire on its cleanup of the river.

“I have a special place in my heart for trips like this. I love keeping the river clean, I also get to bring people out and share my passion for keeping it clean,” Rainer said. “At the very end of the day, you might be hot and sweaty and tired and muddy, but people get out with a smile on their face, and they feel good about what they’ve done.”

The Cahaba River Society is a nonprofit founded in 1988 that seeks to restore and protect the Cahaba River watershed.

“The Cahaba River is one of the last bastions of biodiversity that we have in this state,” Rainer said. “What we see in the Cahaba was once everywhere in Alabama, and the other rivers have just kind of been taken over by these destructive human interventions that come in.”

Objects such as tires, bed frames and whole porches have been swept down the river, he said.

“We’re really thankful for Spire and other partnerships that we have with different companies and organizations around Birmingham and across Alabama,” Rainer said

A second cleanup was held the following day, on Wednesday, Aug. 31.

After the cleanup efforts, Schmidt commented on the experience.

“Just to see the trash that ends up in the river, it was eye opening for us,” he said. “We felt really good about being out there and doing our small part to clean up that part of the river.”

Schmidt also shared his perspective on the Cahaba River Society.

“We really appreciate what they do for everyone in Birmingham,” Schmidt said. “Spire is happy to support them in the many ways we can.”

Spire will continue to give back to the community, he said.

“It’s always good to get out and give back to the community,” Schmidt said. “You’re going to continue to see our volunteers in orange shirts helping out the community in various ways.”

Those interested in getting involved can follow the Cahaba River Society Facebook page at Facebook.com/CahabaRiverSociety.

Spire Energy can be found on its Facebook page @spireenergy.