Recent Articles Citing EGA's Tracking the Field Report


See below for three recent articles that have cited EGA's Tracking the Field Report.


Health Affairs
Our Climate Change And Health “Moment”: How Philanthropy Can Help

Some would say that the climate change and health connection is having its “moment.” It could not have arrived too soon.

Environmental funders have, to a large extent, provided the primary philanthropic support for fighting climate change. The money spent annually by foundations and individual philanthropists has been directed toward wringing carbon out of our energy systems and to other measures that will slow our inexorable path toward a warmer world.

According to the Environmental Grantmakers Association’s (EGA’s) Tracking the Field report, its members gave $308 million in 2014 to support issues relevant to “Energy” and “Climate.” That figure accounted for 23 percent of EGA members’ total environmental giving. The EGA is a membership organization made up of more than 200 funders that award about 40 percent of US environmental funding.

Funders have come together to create organizations like ClimateWorks Foundation, a funders’ collaborative that has helped shape philanthropy’s response to climate change. And while some foundations, including Bloomberg Philanthropies, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation (where I am currently a Visiting Scholar) have long understood how climate change affects their other programmatic work, health foundations, by and large, have not seen climate change as an area worthy of major investment.

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Alliance Magazine
Foundation spending on climate change

For US and UK foundations, climate philanthropy is around 2% of overall foundation spending.
Climate change is arguably the most serious, systemic and far-reaching issue we face as the human race. How much are foundations spending to address it? Looking at data from the US, the UK and Europe, it seems that somewhere between 0.8 per cent and 2.2 per cent of total foundation spending is directly addressing climate change.

In the US

According to the Foundation Center, climate change-related grants by US foundations account for 0.8 per cent of all foundation spending.[1] When three separate subcategories – ‘Climate and atmosphere’, ‘Energy’ and ‘Transportation’ – are incorporated into an overall ‘Energy and climate’ category, the figure for total spending by US foundations on climate change rises to 1.82 per cent.

Data gathered by the US-based Environmental Grantmakers Association (EGA) shows a big emphasis on advocacy and policy among climate grantmakers.[2] In 2013, 55 per cent of funding for ‘Energy and climate’ used ‘Advocacy/Organizing/Movement building’ or ‘Public policy’ as the strategy, compared to 33 per cent across all issue groups.

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Inside Philanthropy
Why This Young Foundation Sees Environmental Education as a "Game Changer"

Education is generally one of philanthropy’s top priorities. The environment, while a little further down, lands a substantial and growing chunk of funding.

But the field where the two explicitly overlap, environmental education, finds itself historically in the shadows of both, receiving a relatively low amount of support, even from philanthropists who care about the larger issues.

One 2012 study found that environmental education received only about 5 percent of overall environment funding. The EGA’s latest assessment of green philanthropy found it to be one of the least-funded strategies among members, although it’s seen an increase in recent years.

Those are inviting stats for the Pisces Foundation, a recently established West Coast environment funder that’s carving out a role by targeting important issues others are overlooking. Based in Gap clothing empire money from trustees Bob and Randi Fisher, Pisces is building out three programs—one on water management, another on a potent type of climate pollutants, and now, on environmental education.  

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