For a world where people and nature thrive
The AEGN was established in 2008 by a handful of passionate members. Today, we’ve grown to be one of Australia’s most respected and effective philanthropy networks.
We act to protect our land, restore a safe climate and support the natural world to sustain our children and the generations to come. Our vision is a world where people and nature thrive.
Our new strategic plan charts a course to make this vision a reality — and there’s no time to lose. We are living through the most critical decade for the planet, and what we do now matters more than at any other time in history.
Here in Australia, with floods, fires and droughts devastating our communities and the places we love, we know we’re rapidly reaching the point of no return for our country and the planet. As a vibrant and active network of 180+ funders, we have what it takes to protect our precious environment. But we need all hands on deck.
For our natural world, for a safe climate, it’s now or never.
The challenge: transformation, now
Australia must reduce our carbon pollution by up to 75 per cent by 2030 if the world is to have a chance of keeping warming to 1.5 degrees. At least 30 per cent of our land and sea must be permanently protected to restore the web of life that sustains us.
Meanwhile, public funding for environmental protection in Australia has drastically reduced at a time when our ecological systems face collapse and the threats to our rivers, forests, woodlands and oceans have increased.
Climate funding still makes up only around 2 per cent of global giving, and it is dwarfed by the money and influence of vested interests.
And while some progress has been made, much needs to be done to properly resource Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to care for their lands and seas as they have done for millennia.
Yet the solutions exist.
In the face of these challenges, we need to give not only more, but more effectively.
Escalating challenges, rising ambition
Our new strategic plan details ambitious goals commensurate with the threats we face, and a series of bold initiatives to realise our vision. Our ultimate purpose? To avert catastrophe and create a better world.
Our plan is powerful because our members helped us create it. You told us you’re ready to rise to this critical moment, to give more and give smarter to catalyse decisive action — and this is where the AEGN plays a crucial role.
As Australia’s peak membership organisation for environment and climate philanthropy, we are uniquely positioned to channel our members’ passion, energy and commitment into a positive force for the planet.
Our members have a collective corpus of more than $2 billion and are connected to decision makers across Australia in business, government and community. It’s time to draw on our collective strength — intellectual, financial and social — to take our impact to the next level.
Our new strategy = maximum impact
To ward off the worst of the climate and biodiversity crises, philanthropists have a vital role to play in remaking economic, political and social systems at all levels, from local to global. It’s an enormous challenge, but nothing short of systemic change will deliver us a carbon-neutral future where nature in all its forms is valued and protected.
As we enter this critical decade for action, our new strategy focuses on growing our network and harnessing our members’ resources and influence in even more effective ways.
We will do this in partnership with our members and other organisations and individuals by:
- growing the amount and impact of giving to climate and the environment;
- growing our profile and influence to be the go-to organisation for environmental giving; and
- further strengthening our trusted, connected and respected organisation.
NOW is the time to act as we are in a race to reach zero emissions before the devastating impact of climate tipping points. The AEGN is uniquely powerful as our network provides the ability to find gaps and opportunities to maximise your effectiveness.
Eytan Lenko, AEGN Deputy Chair
Our solutions: bold, courageous, game-changing
The wicked problems of today’s escalating climate and biodiversity crises are so complex that systemic change is the only way to restore planetary health and enable people and nature to thrive.
Philanthropy can catalyse this change. Its financial resources — but also its courage, patience and agility — can provide a base of support that raises ambition and mobilises action within governments, businesses and communities.
AEGN members have already achieved major wins for climate and environment. In recent years, these have included:
- Pushing Australia’s biggest polluters to commit to 100 per cent renewable energy by 2030 (45 companies have signed up so far)
- Funding groundbreaking climate litigation cases, including through establishing Equity Generation Lawyers
- Backing numerous campaigns to stop major fossil fuel developments around Australia
- Leveraging $2 million to achieve a change in land-clearing laws and secure a $500 million land restoration commitment from the Queensland Government
- Contributing to the end of native logging in Western Australia by 2024
- Securing strong bipartisan support for the Indigenous Ranger and Indigenous Protected Area programs
- Changing the conversation around environment and climate through funding projects like The Guardian Australia’s environmental investigations team and Monash Climate Change Communications Research Hub
As a network, we’re increasing our confidence, coordination and influence to push more deeply and effectively at the levers of change.
There’s no time to waste.
The AEGN is a not-for-profit with deductible gift status and is entirely funded by its members. We extend our special thanks to those members who have provided financial support for the AEGN’s operations.
We also extend our thanks to members and supporters, partners and other stakeholders who have contributed to this plan.
We acknowledge that this plan builds on previous efforts, and we thank all those involved in the AEGN’s journey to make it the organisation it is today.