Delmarva Power is giving away more than 1,000 free trees to its residential customers through the Arbor Day Foundation’s Energy-Saving Trees program.

Coming off the heels of Earth Day’s 50th Anniversary, this Earth-friendly and environmentally focused initiative helps customers conserve energy and reduce household energy use through strategic tree planting. As an added benefit, according to the National Wildlife Federation, research demonstrates that exposure to trees has a relaxing effect on humans, reducing stress and impacting a sense of well-being, benefits customers could take advantage of as the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic continue.

Starting April 24 — Arbor Day — Delmarva Power customers can reserve one free tree per household by visiting arborday.org/delmarva. Customers will be able to choose one-gallon trees in various selections, including Bald Cypress, Red Maple, River Birch and White Oak. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home orders in Delaware and Maryland, trees will be delivered to each customer’s home between four and six weeks from when an online reservation is completed. Trees will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.

"Joining with the Arbor Day Foundation, we are able to provide our customers with a great opportunity to save energy and make a difference in the environment,” said Gary Stockbridge, Delmarva Power region president. "As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, while also managing the health and wellbeing of our families, we are pleased to offer customers a special way to show their support for the future of our planet and promote sustainability in their neighborhood without leaving their homes.”

Trees provide benefits to a community by improving air and water quality, reducing stormwater runoff and adding to the visual appeal of a neighborhood. Since 2012, Delmarva Power has provided more than 10,430 trees for customers to plant, providing the opportunity for saving nearly 20.9 million kilowatt hours of energy and removing close to 153,000 pounds of air pollutants from the atmosphere, according to the Arbor Day Foundation. The benefits from these trees are projected to provide more than $7.6 million in environmental benefits.

Through the Arbor Day Foundation’s website, customers will have the power to explore interactive tools that can help them determine the best location on their property to plant their tree for energy savings benefits. Properly planted trees can provide a homeowner many benefits, such as reducing energy use through summer shading and by slowing winter winds.

As always, and especially with so many people at home due to COVID-19, anyone planning to plant energy saving trees must call 811 at least a few days before beginning their dig to learn the approximate location of underground utility equipment. Taking the right steps before digging will help avoid accidental damage to underground lines that could disrupt services to surrounding neighbors and prevent potential injury from striking an underground electric, natural gas or other utility line. One free call to 811 connects callers to Miss Utility, which notifies the appropriate utility companies of their intent to dig. Every digging project, no matter how large or small, warrants a call to 811.

Customers unable to reserve a free tree through the internet are encouraged to call 855-670-2771 to secure a tree.

For more on Delmarva Power, visit delmarva.com.