2016

CORPORATE & CONSUMER PRACTICES

The Foundation’s Corporate and Consumer Practices program area supports organizations that build towards a sustainable future, particularly by shifting corporate and consumer environmental practices. Funded projects range from direct engagement with corporations, to activism against destructive industries, to public education and media that amplifies efforts to improve consumer behavior surrounding energy and consumption. These initiatives work towards a sustainable economy that relies less on destructive, extractive practices and more on renewable, circular production and consumption models. In seeking projects making an impact in these areas, the Foundation prioritizes organizations that are grassroots-led, that hold the potential to serve as industry or community “tipping points,” and that apply a climate change analysis to their work.

Below are the Foundation’s 2016 Corporate and Consumer Practices grantees.


350.org

General Operating Support - $40,000

350.org, headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, is an international organization that combines online campaigns, grassroots organizing, and creative communications to build a movement for climate solutions across the planet. The campaign is named after 350 parts per million, the safe upper limit of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, according to the latest science. To prevent disastrous climate change, humans need to reduce the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere below 350 parts per million by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. That task has become a guidepost for the wide array of strategies 350.org employs to strengthen, uplift, and catalyze the global climate movement to achieve victories large and small, both in the urgent present and over the long haul.


Alliance for Climate Education

General Operating Support - $65,000 (second payment of a two-year grant)

The Alliance for Climate Education (ACE) was founded in 2008 to educate high school students about the science behind climate change and inspire them to take action. Not many organizations can say that their work has reached over 1.6 million people five years into their formation. Nor could many claim that they’re actually changing peoples’ minds on climate change. However, ACE is doing both. It recognizes that it is critical not just to raise awareness of climate change and its effects among youth, but to actively engage them in the debate and encourage them to take leadership roles. ACE’s mission is to fundamentally shift the attitude and behavior of a generation and build the will to solve the climate crisis. ACE achieves this through an education and action program that accelerates climate science literacy among teens, providing leadership training and opportunities, and inspiring students to become climate leaders and innovators in the green economy.


Amazon Watch

Sacred Headwaters Campaign - $50,000

Amazon Watch was founded in 1996 to conserve threatened tropical forests and advance the rights of indigenous peoples in the Amazon Basin. It partners with indigenous and environmental organizations in campaigns for human rights, corporate accountability and the conservation of the Amazon's ecological systems.

Amazon Watch’s multi-year Sacred Headwaters Campaign is an ambitious plan to create a “No-Go Zone” for extractive industries within the heart of Ecuador’s upper Amazon, where multiple indigenous peoples rely on the fragile balance of these ecosystems and where scientists have recorded some of the highest rates of biodiversity on Earth.


American Sustainable Business Institute

General Operating Support - $25,000

The American Sustainable Business Institute is a network of diverse state and local grassroots business organizations that brings the power of values-based businesses to crucial advocacy movements and campaigns. The goal is to mobilize micro- and small businesses, Main Street businesses, Mom and Pop shops, collectives, and worker co-ops, and creative new enterprises that break old molds. Historically, these businesses have had little power compared with national forces such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, American Legislative Exchange Council, and National Federation of Independent Business.

American Sustainable Business Institute’s project, “Building a Business Movement for a Sustainable Society, Climate Action, Clean Energy, Safer Chemicals, Clean Water, and a Just Economy,” will build business support for key sustainability issues—climate, energy, chemicals, water, and sustainable economic development. It will build business power on the national, state, and local levels to advance a sustainable economy. It will educate and prepare business leaders, develop business case materials, prepare business leaders to speak effectively with regulators and policy-makers in Washington and in statehouses, and build advocacy and media campaigns. By coordinating efforts within and between localities and states, the project will wield businesses into a strong and effective voice to achieve change on the issues and to help build the new systems and rules our society needs to grow in a healthy and sustainable manner. This business movement will provide a counter balance to a short-term, profit-at-all-cost corporate mentality.


As You Sow

Consumer Packaging, E-waste Recycling, and Ocean Plastics Pollution- $35,000

Founded in 1992, As You Sow promotes environmental and social corporate responsibility through shareholder advocacy, coalition building, innovative legal strategies, and practical online financial transparency tools. By representing investors, it works directly with corporate executives to press for stronger environmental and social policies that reduce risk, benefit brand reputation, and increase the bottom line while bringing about positive change for the environment and human rights.

As You Sow’s Waste Program focuses on Consumer Packaging, Electronic Waste Recycling, and Ocean Plastics Pollution. Through this program, it seeks to reduce waste, pollution, resource consumption, and plastic packaging debris in oceans by increasing the recyclability and recycled content of packaging, and in the long term, by developing producer responsibility or equivalent programs for packaging to increase the effectiveness of collection and recycling and composting. Its core goal is the implementation of policies and practices that lead to higher product and packaging recycling rates and that reduce the environmental impacts of producing, consuming, and disposing of goods.


Corporate Accountability International

Real Food Media Project$25,000

The Real Food Media Project is a collaborative project to inspire, educate, and grow the movement for sustainable food and farming. The group’s first initiative is Food Mythbusters, which provides a set of tools—animated videos, live action short documentaries, online resources, and more—to help spread the real story about what we eat. Led by author Anna Lappé, Food MythBusters is a collaboration among a wide range of organizations working to directly challenge Big Ag’s marketing might with grassroots truth-telling about the true costs of industrial agriculture and the real potential of sustainable food and farming.


Dogwood Alliance

The Paper Campaign $25,000

Dogwood Alliance mobilizes diverse voices to defend the forests and communities of the Southern U.S. — the largest paper producing region of the world — from destructive industrial forestry. For the past 10 years, Dogwood Alliance has been on the leading edge of catalyzing a shift in the U.S. paper market toward greater use of post-consumer recycled and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper. Through its efforts, Dogwood Alliance has already transformed the practices of some of the largest corporations in the world, increasing protection for over 90 million acres of forests across the South.


Earthworks

Protecting Ecosystems and Communities from Dirty Mining - $35,000

Earthworks is a Washington, D.C. based organization with a 27-year history of standing by communities and habitats harmed by extractive industries. With a membership base of 65,000 advocates, Earthworks provides frontline communities with technical and advocacy support, strengthens grassroots networks, conducts research to inform evidence-based decision-making, and raises public awareness to change policies and practices. In 2016, Earthworks will focus on key points of leverage that will create market-based incentives for changing mining practices, empower partners in Latin America with the evidence and technical support to stop dirty mines, and advocate for international policy that protects our oceans from mining and mine waste. In the year ahead, Earthworks will also ensure that civil society speaks out for at-risk communities and watersheds and use of the highest auditing standards for the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA). In Latin America, efforts will continue to focus in the Peruvian Andes and Mexico and will extend to Chile. As part of Earthworks’ new oceans campaign, a major focus will be to secure international policies from the International Seabed Authority and other regulators that stop the practices of seabed mining and dumping of mine waste into oceans.


Environmental Investigation Agency

General Operating Support - $55,000

The Environmental Investigation Agency is an independent campaigning organization committed to bringing out change that protects the natural world from environmental crime and abuse. The organization uses pioneering undercover investigations to expose environmental crimes, and campaigns for solutions to illegal logging, the illegal wildlife trade, and other threats to the global environment such as climate change. The Environmental Investigation Agency also identifies shortcomings in national and international laws, as well as in corporate natural resource sourcing and consumption habits, to develop dynamic strategies that successfully advocate new or improved policies, implementation and enforcement measures.


Environmental Paper Network

General Operating Support - $25,000 (first payment of a two-year grant)

The Environmental Paper Network (EPN) was founded in 2002 to create a common platform and promote collaboration among not-for-profit organizations with different approaches to addressing the pulp and paper industries' impact on our most pressing environmental challenges. These challenges include deforestation, loss of biodiversity and ecologically sensitive habitat, air and water quality, and solid waste. Today, the Environmental Paper Network is a network of over 140 organizations in 26 countries working toward a Global Paper Vision and serves as a model for collaboration that is being employed by advocates around the world.


Food Tank

General Operating Support - $25,000

Food Tank, founded in 2012, works to re-frame the current policy conversation about the global food system. Food Tank’s mission is to offer comprehensive solutions and environmentally sustainable ways of alleviating hunger, obesity, and poverty by cultivating a network of connections and information. Food Tank publishes original content seven days a week, including video, articles, columns, reports, and investigative journalism. Its team aggregates and disseminates current food research and innovation, as well as executing its own independent research. Food Tank is published or interviewed in major media outlets, both nationally and globally, and convenes food system leaders at more than 50 events a year.


Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA)

General Operating Support - $50,000

The Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA) works to promote and assist in the shaping of local environmentally sustainable economies and creative zero waste solutions in communities around the world. GAIA’s U.S. & Canada Program coordinates and supports a vibrant network of more than 250 regional members. It is building a national movement that challenges new and existing waste incinerators, advocates for zero waste with justice, and participates in broader sustainability organizing. GAIA believes that zero waste goes hand in hand with democracy, transparency, and economic and environmental justice, a vision called “zero waste with justice.” It uses this framework to link the apparently apolitical issues of recycling and composting with “new economy” networks and transformative visions of social and economic organization, especially in urban contexts and in urban-rural connections around food systems.


Grist.org

General Operating Support - $40,000

Grist is an environmental media organization that uses journalism and technology to inform the public, inspire change, and shape the national conversation on issues about climate change, consumption, and sustainability. Founded in 1999, Grist blazed a trail as one of the first digital media organizations. In the years since, Grist has earned a reputation as a smart source of environmental news and analysis for its monthly audience of more than 2 million.

The mission of Grist is to set the agenda by showing how “green” is reshaping the world. Grist cuts through the noise and empowers a new generation to make change. An independent, irreverent online media platform that uses unexpected approaches to reach and engage a broad audience, Grist has earned a reputation as a smart and sometimes funny source of environmental news, analysis, and advice. Grist, whose motto is “a beacon in the smog,” is headquartered in Seattle with a staff of thirty-nine.


Groundswell

General Operating Support - $40,000

Groundswell’s mission is to unlock communities’ shared economic power to grow sustainability and expand prosperity on the local level. Groundswell’s work is based on the innovative idea of Civic Consumption, which theorizes that communities can leverage their collective purchasing power to drive social and environmental change and reward businesses that deliver the deepest social benefit. By organizing communities into collective purchasing groups and negotiating discounted rates for clean energy, Groundswell makes clean energy accessible to families and organizations for the first time. This expands the clean energy economy and reduces the carbon footprint of energy consumption. Through Groundswell Energy, the organization partners with mission-focused institutions and individual families to help them purchase clean electricity at a reduced price.


Island Press

General Operating Support - $20,000

Island Press is a nonprofit publishing house founded in 1984, whose mission is to provide the best ideas and information to those seeking to understand and protect the environment and create solutions to its complex problems.

Island Press elevates voices of change, shines a spotlight on crucial issues, and focuses attention on
sustainable solutions. Its network of authors includes Edward O. Wilson, Paul Ehrlich, Sylvia Earle,
Gretchen Daily, Jan Gehl, Daniel Pauly, and many others. By working closely with experts like these,
Island Press has developed a comprehensive and growing body of knowledge—vital resources for all
those working to protect the environment and create healthy communities.


Natural Resources Defense Council

Addressing Climate Change, Community Engagement, and National Solid Waste - $65,000 (second payment of a two-year grant)

Founded in 1970 by a group of law students and attorneys at the forefront of the environmental movement, NRDC has become one of the nation’s largest environmental advocacy organizations. NRDC lawyers helped write some of America’s bedrock environmental laws. Today, the NRDC staff of more than 300 attorneys, scientists and policy experts work out of offices in New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Beijing. In 2016, NRDC plans to significantly strengthen its community engagement work around the high-profile U.S. EPA Clean Power Plan, as well as continue and expand its e-waste and food waste efforts nationwide.


The New York Harbor Foundation

Billion Oyster Project - $35,000

The New York Harbor Foundation’s mission is to prepare New York City students for careers in marine science and technology by learning about and exploring issues of sustainable ecosystems, including the New York Harbor. To further this mission, the Foundation supports The Harbor School, a public high school on Governor’s Island with a mission to provide a college-preparatory education built upon New York City’s maritime experience. The Billion Oyster Project (BOP), a project of the New York Harbor Foundation, is a long-term, large-scale plan to restore one billion live oysters to New York Harbor over the next twenty years, and in the process train thousands of young people in New York City to work within and care about their local marine environment. BOP is a partnership of schools, businesses, nonprofits, and volunteers all working together to grow oysters, restore the estuary, and make our city a healthier and more resilient place to live.


Rainforest Action Network

General Operating Support - $40,000

Rainforest Action Network (RAN) is an environmental and human rights organization that works at the intersection of three core issue areas: preserving rainforests, protecting the climate, and upholding human rights. RAN approaches this work through the lens of corporate accountability, because its goals are not only to stop the worst offenders but to shift entire industrial sectors and create lasting positive change.

A core component to RAN’s strategy is building authentic and effective partnerships with frontline communities — those communities most impacted by a lack of corporate accountability and often most capable of supporting a movement for change. RAN partners with local, indigenous and frontline communities to create targeted campaigns that exert pressure and extract actionable policies from corporations responsible for rainforest destruction, massive pollution, and pushing species toward extinction. RAN also ensures that human rights, labor rights, and local and indigenous rights are central to these new policies.


Stand

General Operating Support - $50,000

Stand works to protect endangered forests, wildlife, and human well-being. Stand has secured agreements to protect more than 65 million acres of endangered forests, including more than one million acres of native forests in Chile; 6.7 million acres of British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest; five million acres in British Columbia’s Inland Temperate Rainforest; 55 million acres in the Canadian Boreal Forest; and successfully prevented Royal Dutch Shell from fracking across 1 million acres in British Columbia’s Sacred Headwaters region. It was also instrumental in implementing the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement, the world’s largest conservation initiative, encompassing 170 million acres of Canada’s Boreal Forest. Stand has led dozens of major US-based corporations to adopt more environmentally responsible policies for paper and timber procurement, including Office Depot, Hewlett-Packard, and Victoria’s Secret – and most recently, 3M, the largest manufacturer with the most diverse product lines to adopt a stringent forest policy.


The Story of Stuff

General Operating Support - $50,000

The Story of Stuff Project is a California-based organization founded in 2008 to leverage the unexpected viral success of Annie Leonard’s The Story of Stuff—a ground breaking online documentary that explains where our stuff comes from and where it goes when we throw it away. The Project’s team has been a hub of innovation in environmental communications and engagement, creating some of the most impactful cause-related viral videos of all time—garnering more than 50 million online views—and motivating viewers to support hundreds of environmental campaigns and projects with their time, energy, and money.

In 2016, the Project will: create digital content that highlights the systemic nature of the problems with how we make, use and throw away stuff, the potential and existing solutions, and the central role collective action will play in implementing those solutions. The organization will also field and win timely, strategic campaigns that provide opportunities for their community members to take action together; and bring together, collaborate with, and elevate the profile of partners working within and across the groups’ core issue areas, including plastics and water.


Urban Green

General Operating Support - $40,000 (second payment of a two-year grant)

The Urban Green Council, the New York affiliate of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), advances sustainability in urban buildings through education, advocacy and research. Established in 2002, Urban Green’s in-house experts and dedicated network of volunteers are helping to transform the built environment in New York City, with models that can be replicated in urban centers nationwide.

Urban Green’s work on leading two blue-ribbon commissions for the City of New York has resulted in measures that by 2030 will reduce citywide carbon emissions by almost 5%; lower daily water consumption by the equivalent of 30 Central Park Reservoirs; and divert 100,000 tons of asphalt from landfills annually. Urban Green continues to work with the city and a range of stakeholders to help ensure that NYC reaches its ambitious goal of a 80% carbon reduction by 2050.


Grantees by Year:  2017  |  2016