I’m so proud to share the list of community nonprofits selected to receive a 2014 Wells Fargo Environmental Solutions for Communities grant today. We’re awarding grants to hard-working nonprofits across the country totaling more than $3 million. Yes, that’s right $3 million. We are in our third year of this grant program, which was developed to support our company’s goal to provide $100 million in environmental philanthropy by 2020. This particular grant program is focused on community-based nonprofit organizations that work to support land and water conservation, energy efficiency, infrastructure, and educational outreach in communities where our customers and team members live and work.
Choosing the recipients wasn’t easy. We received hundreds of applications from great organizations across the country — all with a clear passion for the environment and great ideas to care for our planet. Priority consideration was given to those organizations with a volunteer component that allowed our team members a way to get involved with additional sweat equity to maximize the cash donation and results of community projects.
We would like to thank and congratulate all of the organizations that have participated in this competitive process, and we are confident that our selections enable a large number of environmental nonprofits to make a difference in our communities today and into the future.
The Environmental Solutions for Communities grant program began in 2012 – the same year as Wells Fargo’s new environmental commitment – which I mentioned before includes a $100 million in cash philanthropy goal to environmentally-focused nonprofits and universities by 2020. Our grant program is administered by the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) and funded by Wells Fargo with a $15 million, five-year commitment to promote environmental stewardship across the country.
These grants will be distributed to organizations that focus on:
- Sustainable agriculture and forestry
- Conservation of land and water resources
- Energy efficiency and infrastructure
- Community outreach and environmental education.
Last year, the program funded proposals in select cities/regions that helped address the most pressing environmental issues identified by each participating community. Some examples of our past grant projects include: helping Camp Pollack in Sacramento, CA host local students; working with the Sea Turtle Conservancy along the Florida coast to keep endangered animals safe; and restoring the landmark Levi Carter Pavilion with the city of Omaha, NE.
The 2013 projects collectively helped reduce more than 3,185,016.00 pounds of CO2, which is the equivalent to averting consumption of 8,535 barrels of oil*. Through the program, groups also planted 132,709 trees and restored over 1,600 acres of habitat. In addition, 150 received training people in “green” jobs, while more than 689,000 community members supported environmental grant programs.
You can learn more about the program and access the 2015 application (available in September 2014) on the NFWF application website: www.nfwf.org/environmentalsolutions. Projects benefiting underserved communities and encouraging volunteerism are given priority consideration.
Now here’s a list of our 2014 grant recipients.
* Environmental impact estimates from CO2 were calculated by National Fish and Wildlife Foundation using statistics from the U.S Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration.