Climate

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Climate focus area

We are dedicated to tackling the climate crisis and supporting communities coast to coast to coast in transitioning to net-zero carbon. On this page, you will find further information about the Climate focus area, its funding strategies, and the eligibility criteria for potential applicants.

What is net-zero carbon? 

“Put simply, net-zero means cutting greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible, with any remaining emissions re-absorbed from the atmosphere, by oceans and forests for instance.”  – United Nations Net Zero Coalition

Approach

Communities are already experiencing the impacts of climate change. More frequent and severe natural disasters (flooding, tornados, heat waves, forest fires, droughts, etc.,) are threatening our food production, our homes, our roads and bridges and our ways of earning a living. Experts agree that the cost of inaction and adaptation to climate impacts will be far greater than the costs of taking action now.

We recognize that the impacts of the climate crisis are not experienced equally across society, meaning some communities are more severely impacted. For example, melting permafrost, changing ice patterns and shifting migration of animals are especially damaging to Indigenous ways of life, and it is often Indigenous communities’ lands and waters that are most polluted by fossil fuel projects. It is inadequately housed Canadians and those most at risk, such as the elderly, who experience the highest mortality rates during heat waves. Critical to tackling the climate crisis is to support communities most impacted in designing and implementing solutions.

We recognize that this is a field in rapid evolution, and we are always open to learning about new approaches. We invite you to book a 15-minute appointment with our team to determine if we are the right partner for your project.

What we fund

Line drawing a wind turbine and clouds surrounded by a yellow version of the McConnell logo. Connected to the logo are the three Climate funding strategies: Climate Mitigation (projects that address systemic barriers to carbon emissions reductions), Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (projects representing Indigenous, and racialized groups that seek to empower their communities in improving their resiliency to climate impacts), and Climate Finance (projects that innovate the financial sector in Canada by address data and knowledge gaps for institutions, investors, pensions funds, etc).
Line drawing a wind turbine and clouds surrounded by a yellow version of the McConnell logo. Connected to the logo are the three Climate funding strategies: Climate Mitigation (projects that address systemic barriers to carbon emissions reductions), Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (projects representing Indigenous, and racialized groups that seek to empower their communities in improving their resiliency to climate impacts), and Climate Finance (projects that innovate the financial sector in Canada by address data and knowledge gaps for institutions, investors, pensions funds, etc).

We want to help fund activities that support climate mitigation solutions, projects that empower Indigenous, racialized, and otherwise marginalized groups to improve their climate resiliency and engage in solutions, and climate finance projects that seek to innovate the financial sector in Canada. Learn more below.

$10.4M

in contributions

In 2022, we allocated $10.4 million to our Climate focus area and supported 61 organizations working to accelerate an equitable transition to a net-zero carbon economy.

Our funding streams

With this focus area, we seek to support organizations contributing to at least one of the following strategies: 

  • Climate mitigation solutions:
    Projects that seek to address systemic barriers to carbon emissions reductions. Specifically, we are looking for projects addressing high-emitting sectors that can demonstrate a pathway to net-zero carbon by 2050. 
  • Equity, diversity and inclusion: 
    Projects representing:
    – Indigenous, racialized, and/or youth groups;
    – Communities who depend on and/or are impacted by fossil fuel industries; or
    – Otherwise marginalized groups that seek to empower communities to improve their resiliency to climate impacts or engage in climate mitigation solutions. 
  • Climate finance:
    Projects that seek to innovate the financial sector in Canada by addressing specific data and knowledge gaps for financial institutions, investors, pension funds and the corporate sector. This includes strengthening climate risk disclosure practices, decarbonizing investment portfolios, establishing science-based climate plans and advancing equitable participation in climate finance and capital investments in the energy transition. 

 

To learn more about the questions and criteria for all three funding strategies, please read our sample application form. 

Recent funding

Funding will contribute to evidence-based research and policy work to build equity in climate programs and policies.

$ 500,000 2024 - 2027

Funding will contribute to two projects of the Clean Economy Fund to advocate for ambitious climate policy: New Economy Canada and the Housing and Climate Task Force.

$ 470,000 2024 - 2027

Funding will contribute to strengthening capacity and expertise to engage with pension fund regulators and provincial financial regulators. 

$ 75,000 2023 - 2024

Funding will contribute to Ecojustice’s legal work of climate finance, which started in 2021. 

$ 100,000 2023 - 2024

Funding will contribute to I4PC’s goal in holding publicly traded companies accountable for following through their net-zero commitments. 

$ 120,000 2023 - 2024

Funding will contribute to sharing data and best practices for building net-zero homes and strengthen policy work in Manitoba. 

$ 398,000 2023 - 2026

Learn more about how to apply for Climate funding on our “For Applicants” page.