Helping the environment can mean a lot of different things. The fact is that there are a lot of areas where our planet and its inhabitants could use a helping hand.
From rising waters due to climate change and the endangerment of species due to habitat destruction and deforestation, there are charitable organizations working on a wide array of environmentally focused projects and programs.
We’ve highlighted a few of our favorite environmental charities who are making a big impact working to change the world for the better in a range of ways, from fighting deforestation to combating climate change.
Founded on the belief that a single person really can make a difference, the Wildlife Conservation Network is dedicated to the protection of endangered species and the preservation of their natural habitat. While there are a lot of organizations doing great work in this area, part of what makes Wildlife Conservation Network such an amazing organization is their unique approach to this problem.
They work closely with entrepreneurial conservationists to support the creation of new and innovative ways for humans and wildlife to coexist, survive, and thrive.
Wildlife Conservation Network currently provides funding and tools to with seventeen different wildlife conservationists working in 37 different countries across the globe. Since 93% of funds donated to the Wildlife Conservation Network are used to support their wildlife programs in the field, when you donate to the Wildlife Conservation Network, you can rest assured that your gift is going to help wildlife.
For over 25 years, the Rainforest Trust has been using 100% of all project gifts to fund the vital conservation efforts to save the world’s rainforests. They are able to do this because their board members cover the majority of the cost associated with their operating expenses.
The Rainforest Trust’s mission is to purchase and protect threatened tropical rainforests and other lands. Rainforest Trust works directly with the community and local organizations in some of the most vulnerable forested areas across the globe. Since 1988, Rainforest Trust has been able to save more than 16 million acres from deforestation and destruction.
In 1970, a group of attorneys and law school students involved with environmental activism came to together to form the National Resources Defense Council. While the National Resources Defense Council currently works on over a dozen different program areas, the basis of all of their work is that all people have a right to clean air, clean water, and healthy communities.
One of their largest projects today is the Climate and Clean Air Program. In their battle against climate change, the National Resources Defense Council works to encourage the use of clean energy and limits dangerous carbon pollution.
Our planet’s surface is over 70% water. We simply cannot ignore the fact that what happens to our oceans can and does hurt us. While pollution kills ocean wildlife and overfishing damages fish stocks, the Ocean Conservancy is dedicated to protecting our planet’s waters.
Established over 40 years ago, the Ocean Conservancy lobbies governments, works with fisherman, cleans up trash along the coast, and partners with scientists in search of innovative, clear ideas for ocean conservation.
This charity is committed to finding science-based solutions for our oceans seemingly intractable problems.
For example, the Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup program, part of their Trash Free Seas solution, has removed over 144.5 million pounds of trash from the oceans since its inception 25 years ago.
Part of what makes the Ocean Conservancy unique is their willingness to face head on some of the greatest global challenges to the environment with sound, science-based solutions.
The National Geographic Society is committed to exploring and protecting the planet. One of the oldest environmental organizations in the Unites States, the National Geographic Society has been funding explorers and scientists for years. And then, the National Geographic Society shares their findings in the world.
With money from donations, the National Geographic Society supports literally hundreds of exploration, conservation, and research projects in all corners of the globe. In addition to this work, they also focus on up to a half dozen different initiatives to increase attention, protect endangered animals, ecosystems, and cultures. Their current initiatives include the Big Cats Initiative and the Genographic Project. Click here for a full list of the National Geographic Society’s current Impact Programs.
The world is in trouble, but nothing is insurmountable. The scale of problems like climate change and ocean acidification can feel overwhelming. But the high impact work being done by these five organizations proves these problems are not unconquerable. While all these organizations are national, there are a myriad of small, local, eco-focused charities across the nation. Consider finding and supporting these local organizations.