Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Announces $20 Million Natural Climate Solutions Initiative
The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation today announced a $20 million commitment to support natural climate solutions – the protection, restoration and management of land to capture and store carbon and effectively mitigate climate change. Recent research reveals that forests, grasslands, agriculture and coastal wetlands have the potential to contribute 37 percent of the carbon reductions needed for keeping the planet at a safe level of warming, yet receive only three percent of international climate-related funding. The foundation’s new commitment is in addition to its existing $70 million in grant making to address climate change.
“It is essential to act aggressively to limit warming of the global climate below two degrees Celsius for the safety of humankind and the natural world,” said Sacha Spector, program director for the environment at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. “We cannot achieve this target without changing how we conserve and use land. We see this as a tremendous opportunity to harness and restore the power of natural ecosystems and agricultural lands to reduce climate change. By making this substantial new investment in natural climate solutions, we hope to accelerate efforts using this strategy and to encourage other funders to increase their support for this underfunded approach.”
Natural climate solutions include efforts to both maintain and enhance the capacity of ecosystems to store carbon. Through the prevention of large-scale deforestation, improvement of forestry and agricultural practices, restoration of forest and fields, and many other approaches, natural climate solutions not only offer immediate and low-cost opportunities to limit global warming, they also provide significant co-benefits for people and wildlife in the near term. Focused primarily on the U.S., the foundation’s new initiative seeks to support new best practices, business models and markets, finance and policy approaches, and demonstration of projects that lead to accelerated carbon sequestration through landscapes across the country.