Why give to environmental issues?
The environment is our home. It provides us with beautiful places essential to our well-being. It gives us fertile land to grow food, rain to replenish the soil, clean water to drink, miraculous ecosystems for plants and animals, fresh air to breathe and healthy oceans to supply our seafood. Our economy and lifestyle are dependent on healthy water, soil, climate, oceans and biodiversity.
Australia’s ecosystem is unique. Our oceans have the highest marine biodiversity in the world. Our deserts are some of the last great natural expanses. And the vast majority of our native plants and animals are found nowhere else on the planet.
But we are living in a critical decade. Australia has the world’s highest rate of animal extinction. Our main food bowl, the Murray-Darling Basin, is in a state of crisis. And we are experiencing an escalating pattern of extreme and dangerous weather events.
We know that species and ecosystems are declining, not due to ‘natural’ processes but because of what humans have done and are still doing. We need to accept responsibility and bring on the changes that can reverse environmental damage. We cannot close our eyes and pretend it is not happening. We have the knowledge and the ability to act now.
In this decade, we still have a chance to halt the wave of plant and animal extinctions, reverse the decline in the health of soil, rivers and oceans, and minimise the effects of human-induced climate change. But we need to act urgently.
What can you achieve?
With adequate and strategic funding, philanthropy can partner with a powerful, skilled and effective community sector to achieve things that the public and corporate sectors cannot do. In the past few decades, Australian philanthropists have helped forge the way for major environmental achievements.
The largest network of marine sanctuaries in the world: Philanthropy supported the establishment of the world’s first comprehensive set of marine sanctuaries in Victoria. This led to a collaboration of individuals and foundations supporting an advocacy campaign for a new national network of marine sanctuaries, now the largest in the world!
The greatest environmental victory in recent decades: Relatively small amounts of funding from small and large donors was used to stop large-scale land clearing in Queensland in 2004, saving from destruction irreplaceable land the size of the state of Victoria.
Renewable energy and climate action: Green funding has helped set up community wind and solar farms, and supported climate change education, advocacy, research and policy development.
Protecting our food supplies: Hundreds of small grants have helped farmers protect biodiversity and restore degraded land.
Protecting our water supplies: A large grant over many years has supported Australia’s leading experts on water and sustainable agriculture to advocate for the protection and proper use of our fresh water supplies.
Whether you are funding the purchase of land to protect some of Australia’s treasured mammals, an education program about climate change for young people, or an advocacy campaign to reduce urban sprawl and loss of amenity, your funding can make a lasting difference to the future.
- Learn more about the issues, or develop a funding plan of action by working through our step-by-step guide to grantmaking.
- Take a look at some ideas of what you can fund with the amount you have to give.
- For more information on getting started, download our introduction to environmental grantmaking: Giving Green: An Introduction for Grantmakers (PDF 2.5MB). To receive a hard copy, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Become an AEGN member:
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