Is a Giant University Donation a Sign of the Times for Climate Giving?

Is a Giant University Donation a Sign of the Times for Climate Giving?

A $750 million donation to Caltech for research is a landmark for climate change giving, albeit with the kind of contradictions we’ve come to expect from big philanthropy. It will still likely fund some important work. 

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We Don’t Give Up: Mott Plays the Long Game on Clean Water in Flint and Beyond

We Don’t Give Up: Mott Plays the Long Game on Clean Water in Flint and Beyond

Access to clean water is an urgent challenge in more parts of the U.S. The Mott Foundation has been a stalwart funder on this issue in its home city and beyond. What has it accomplished, and how is it staying engaged with Flint’s water crisis?

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The Amazon Fires Are a Big Setback to Funders and Nonprofits. How Are They Responding?

The Amazon Fires Are a Big Setback to Funders and Nonprofits. How Are They Responding?

The fires, along with reports of fast-escalating deforestation outside Brazil, come after many years of funder-backed efforts to protect the Amazon and offer a sobering reminder of philanthropy’s limitations. What’s next for key players in this space?

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Take a Hike: Why a Foundation is Giving Millions for Nature Trails

Take a Hike: Why a Foundation is Giving Millions for Nature Trails

Investing in parks and other nature amenities has become a growing part of place-based philanthropy in recent years. The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation is the latest funder to emerge in this space, and it has some seriously deep pockets.

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With Donor Support, a Regional University Looks to be a Leader in Coastal Resiliency

With Donor Support, a Regional University Looks to be a Leader in Coastal Resiliency

While funders are giving to help communities adapt to climate change, support rarely flows to universities. A gift in Virginia shows that this may be starting to change as more coastal schools and their donors look to address growing threats.

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Community Food Funders: Seeding a Different Crop of Food Movement Leaders

Community Food Funders: Seeding a Different Crop of Food Movement Leaders

While there are hundreds of nonprofit groups working on issues of food justice and the food economy, many are not even aware of each other’s work—much less collaborating. In New York, a funding network is aiming to connect the dots.

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A Bank’s Gifts for Solar Power in Native Communities Raise Hard Questions

A Bank’s Gifts for Solar Power in Native Communities Raise Hard Questions

Wells Fargo is one of the most scandal-ridden banks in the U.S. It also funds environmental work and Native American communities, among other causes. Its recent gifts for renewable energy underscore major tensions in corporate philanthropy.

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New Funding at the Intersection of the Environment and Disability Rights

New Funding at the Intersection of the Environment and Disability Rights

Disability rights is an important component of environmental justice, but one that funders can overlook. Some are paying increasing attention to this intersection, including a collaboration between Ford and Global Greengrants Fund.

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Behind a New Green Alliance is a Trio of Powerful—and Deeply Alarmed—Donors

Behind a New Green Alliance is a Trio of Powerful—and Deeply Alarmed—Donors

The founding of the Earth Alliance by Leonardo DiCaprio, Laurene Powell Jobs, and Brian Sheth reflects a mounting sense of urgency about ecological threats. It also shows how big new money is flowing to environmental causes.

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A Northwest Funder Takes a Local Focus to Protect Threatened Ecosystems

A Northwest Funder Takes a Local Focus to Protect Threatened Ecosystems

Regional grantmakers are working to hold the line on environmental issues as the Trump administration undercuts protections for the natural world. A case in point is the Russell Family Foundation in Washington State.

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Some Climate Donors, Fed Up with “Gradualism,” Are Getting Behind Protest Movements

Some Climate Donors, Fed Up with “Gradualism,” Are Getting Behind Protest Movements

Philanthropy plays an important support role in climate action, but tends to favor moderate, incremental progress. A new pool of donors says it’s time to raise hell, backing disruptive activism, and hopes others will follow.

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Inside Vulcan, a New Model for Solving Some of the World’s Biggest Problems

Inside Vulcan, a New Model for Solving Some of the World’s Biggest Problems

Before he died last fall, the billionaire Paul Allen built up a powerful in-house capacity at his company, Vulcan Inc., to tackle urgent issues like wildlife protection and climate change. IP editor David Callahan takes an inside look at its unique strategy for impact.

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As an Environmental Funder Charts a New Path, it Looks to Others to Lead the Way

As an Environmental Funder Charts a New Path, it Looks to Others to Lead the Way

The Libra Foundation is updating its environment program, centering racial justice and those closest to the problems—and staying open to new ideas. The shift is an example of how more funders are embracing bottom-up approaches.

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Behind a Big Boost for a Legacy Institution, Deep-Pocketed Conservationists

Behind a Big Boost for a Legacy Institution, Deep-Pocketed Conservationists

Nature-focused legacy institutions like zoos and gardens are finding creative ways to engage the public and appeal to funders, including the billionaire donor class. A major gift to the Chicago Botanic Garden shows this dynamic in action.

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