PITTSBURGH, Aug. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- CONSOL Energy (NYSE: CNX) has been awarded the Appalachian Regional Reforestation Initiative's excellence in regional reforestation award recognizing reclamation efforts at the company's Fola operations complex in West Virginia. The award was presented during ARRI's annual meeting earlier this month in Flatwoods, WV. The Fola complex was also recognized as the West Virginia state winner in the 2012 ARRI awards program. State winners were also named for Pennsylvania, Maryland and Tennessee.The regional excellence award recognizes CONSOL Energy for "exemplary performance using the forest reclamation approach" at its Fola complex in Clay and Nicholas Counties in West Virginia, where some 2.3 million trees have been planted since 2002, reclaiming some 4,000 acres as forestland. An additional 300,000 trees are slated for planting in 2013.Katharine Fredriksen, CONSOL Energy senior vice president of environmental strategy and regulatory affairs, noted the reclamation award is indicative of CONSOL Energy's commitment to being a good steward of the environment. "We consider being a good steward of the environment as one of the most important obligations we have," Fredriksen said. "To be honored as both the state and the regional ARRI award winner in recognition of our efforts further validates our commitment to our core value of compliance." To be eligible for the award, a site must be recommended by an inspector with the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection. Nominations for the award were submitted by Kelly Eades and Barry Curry, inspector specialists; and Paul Emerson, inspector.The nominating document noted that in early 1999, Fola began work on the first area destined for commercial forestry as its post mining land use. Fola, it is noted, was the first to use this approach in the Eastern U.S. In order to accomplish the forest reclamation approach, native topsoil was saved and stockpiled and it was then blended with the best available material to create a rooting/growth medium that fit native species requirements for both soil texture and fertility. A light seeding mix of non-competitive and non-invasive vegetation was used with the planting of a diverse tree mix of both early and late succession species and a few wildlife species. Among the trees planted were northern red oak, white oak, sycamore, sugar maple, white ash, black cherry, black locust, red bud and various pines.Eric McGlothlin, general mine foreman; Dave Bays, project engineer; and Mike Brown, mine engineer, accepted the ARRI award on behalf of CONSOL Energy.About CONSOL EnergyCONSOL Energy Inc. (NYSE: CNX) is a Pittsburgh-based producer of coal and natural gas. It has 12 bituminous coal mining complexes in four states and reports proven and probable coal reserves of 4.2 billion tons. The company's premium Appalachian coals are sold worldwide to electricity generators and steelmakers. In natural gas, CONSOL Energy has transformed itself from a pure-play coalbed methane producer to a full-fledged exploration and production company. The company is a leading producer in the Marcellus Shale and is transitioning its active exploration program into development mode in the Utica Shale. CONSOL Energy has proved natural gas reserves of 4.0 trillion cubic feet. Operational safety is the company's top core value and CONSOL Energy boasts a record of almost two times better than the industry average for underground bituminous coal mines. CONSOL Energy is a member of the Standard & Poor's 500 Equity Index and the Fortune 500. Additional information about CONSOL Energy can be found at its Web site: www.consolenergy.com. SOURCE CONSOL Energy Inc.