WASHINGTON, Sept. 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, the Bezos Earth Fund announced pledges of $203.7 million in grants providing critical support to nonprofits working to advance climate justice, advocate for climate-smart economic recovery, and spur innovation in decarbonization pathways. This includes $73.7 million in immediate donations across 12 organizations, as well as a pledge of an additional $130 million by the end of 2021 to organizations supporting the Justice40 Initiative.
"This funding is just the next step in the Bezos Earth Fund's commitment to creating catalytic change during this decisive decade," said Andrew Steer, president of the Bezos Earth Fund. "With each grant, we are helping organizations unblock progress and create pathways to a more sustainable future."
Advancing climate justice
The Bezos Earth Fund disbursed $20 million of the new grants across four climate justice groups, alongside a pledge of an additional $130 million by the end of 2021. Recipient organizations are creating the building blocks for Justice40 — a whole-of-government effort in the U.S. to deliver at least 40% of the overall benefits from federal investments in climate and clean energy to disadvantaged communities.
Grantees include the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice ($4 million), the Partnership for Southern Equity ($6 million), the Robert D. Bullard Center for Environmental and Climate Justice at Texas Southern University ($4 million), and WE ACT for Environmental Justice ($6 million). These groups are increasing community access to the Justice40 decision-making process, encouraging front-line organizations to apply for Justice40 funding, assisting in the monitoring of implementation of Justice40 to local levels, and expanding a partnership with historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) into 12 southern states.
"We appreciate that the Bezos Earth Fund has made a strong commitment to advancing climate justice with the understanding that those advances cannot be achieved without supporting grassroots front-line organizations that represent and mobilize the most affected residents to engage in the solutions that can work," said Peggy Shepard, co-founder and executive director of WE ACT for Environmental Justice. "With this robust support, we will be able to work with other environmental justice groups to advise and monitor the distribution and implementation of Justice40 funds at the local and federal levels in order to help ensure that Justice40 funds reach the communities for which they are intended."
"The link between climate action, good jobs, and human health can no longer be denied," added Steer. "Grants and commitments announced today will double the Bezos Earth Fund's investment in environmental justice to over $300 million since 2020. These grants will support the remarkable work of organizations on the front lines of the climate crisis and in the communities most affected by climate change, with critical funding to move the needle on solution building."
Advocating for U.S. climate action to drive economic recovery
Grants totaling $20 million to two organizations will help communicate an accurate narrative on the impacts of smart action against climate change. Evidence shows highly positive links between smart climate action and job creation, health, and well-being.
The Bezos Earth Fund also distributed $28 million in grants to three organizations to spur innovation in decarbonization pathways.
Ceres Net Zero Finance Initiative ($3 million) helps accelerate progress among U.S. financial regulators in addressing climate risk and mobilize additional commitments from banks and asset owners to net-zero portfolios. Mission Possible Partnership ($7 million) will help trigger transformation in many of the world's most carbon-intensive industries, including steel, aluminum, cement, chemicals, aviation, shipping, and trucking. And the largest grant will go to Science Based Targets Initiative ($18 million) to enable the deepened design of sectoral decarbonization trajectories and drive accelerated adoption worldwide.
Additional grants include The Earthshot Prize ($4.2 million) to discover, spotlight, and scale solutions to the world's greatest environmental challenges, and the National Geographic Society and Campaign for Nature to support the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People ($1.5 million), a group of 67 countries committed to protecting 30% of land and ocean by 2030.
About the Bezos Earth Fund
The Bezos Earth Fund is Jeff Bezos's $10 billion commitment to fund scientists, activists, NGOs, and other actors that will drive climate and nature solutions. By allocating funds creatively, wisely, and boldly, the Bezos Earth Fund has the potential for transformative influence in this decisive decade. Funds will be fully allocated by 2030—the date by which the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals must be achieved.
SOURCE Bezos Earth Fund