3 Important Steps Philanthropies Are Taking to Curb Climate Change

By Antha Williams
The Chronicle of Philanthropy

With Congress at a stalemate and national politics growing increasingly polarized, the role of philanthropy in combating climate change is more critical than ever.

Nimble where politics is clunky, responsive where government is deadlocked, and targeted where Congress is logrolling, philanthropies are catalyzing lasting, positive change on climate, perhaps the most pressing social, environmental, and economic policy challenge of our time.

One example of a philanthropy-backed climate-change effort that has made great progress despite lagging public policy is the Beyond Coal campaign, which just announced the retirement of the nation’s 200th coal plant.

Launched by the Sierra Club in 2002 and supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies and a host of other grant makers, Beyond Coal brings together local activists to fight pollution from coal-fired power plants in their communities. The campaign aims to close America’s dirtiest coal plants and replace them with cleaner energy through a blend of grass-roots organizing and carefully aimed lawsuits.

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