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29 international foundations pledge their support to combat climate change

18 September 2018

29 leading philanthropic foundations pledged more than EUR 3.4 billion over the next five years to combat climate change—the largest-ever philanthropic investment focused on climate change mitigation. The announcement, made at the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in San Francisco, represents a broad global commitment to accelerate proven climate and clean-energy strategies, spur innovation and support organisations around the world working to protect the air they breathe and the communities they call home.

“Philanthropists can and must work together as catalysts to engage governments, the business community and NGOs to accelerate progress on climate change,” said Nat Simons, co-founder of the Sea Change Foundation. “The multi-billion dollar commitment announced today is only a down payment. Together we’ll need to invest billions more. And soon.”

A global effort
The organisations involved in the initiative are dotted across the globe. They have committed funding to advance affordable, low- and zero-carbon solutions to reduce the harmful emissions that cause climate change. Among the organisations is the Danish-based KR Foundation, whose purpose is to address the root causes of climate change and environmental degradation. The investments will support a vast array of strategies, with an emphasis on those addressing the five key challenge areas addressed last week at GCAS — healthy energy systems, inclusive economic growth, sustainable communities, land and ocean stewardship and transformative climate investments.

“Each day brings new evidence of climate change affecting lives—from extreme weather events to increased food insecurity, to tragic impacts on human health. We see the suffering that a steadily warming planet is causing to people around the world, but we also see hope,” said Kate Hampton, CEO of the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF). “As philanthropists, we are committed to doing our part—and to engaging on climate change like never before.”

-Related news:  Global coalition of countries commit to strengthening green transport

Meeting the Paris Climate Agreement goals
Over the past two decades, the NGO sector—supported by philanthropy—has made important progress in the fight to solve climate change. This includes broadening access to low-cost, reliable wind and solar energy; designing policies that are revolutionising the integration of a new generation of electric vehicles; and providing critical support to countries working to meet the requirements of the historic Paris Agreement.

“Tackling global climate change requires partnership and collaboration—and philanthropy has an important role to play,” said Patricia E. Harris, CEO of Bloomberg Philanthropies. “We’re proud to support efforts that are making incredible local progress around the world, but there’s so much more that needs to be done. This landmark pledge is a key step to making an even greater impact, together.”

-Related news: New French-Danish climate and energy cooperation announced

Local participation
Much of the investment will support local organisations working on the frontlines of climate change. The funding will propel the expansion of successful local efforts to solve the climate crisis and allow those most affected by the climate crisis to shape the solutions to it.

“This initiative is a breakthrough, and very welcomed by civil society. Political leaders need to feel the pressure from their constituencies to prioritise action on climate change,” said Wael Hmaidan, executive director of Climate Action Network (CAN) International. “By supporting a strong base of mobilisers, influencers and change agents in local communities around the world, this commitment can help accomplish that.”

Source:  Climate Works

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