Aerial view of a waterway splitting tree covered land.
Lands in New York Aerial view of a waterway splitting land covered in fall colored trees. © Andrew Nesbit

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The Nature Conservancy's Grant Program Supporting Land Trusts and Conservation in New York is Now Accepting Applications

Grants of up to $50,000 will be awarded for projects that protect lands and waters critical for adapting to climate change

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The Nature Conservancy is regularly called upon as a trusted organization that can provide science, decision-making tools and relationship-building skills needed to advance strategic land protection. To further this impact, expand capacity and funding in innovative ways, and empower land trust and conservation organizations, The Nature Conservancy has launched the 2024 funding cycle for the New York Climate Resilience Grant Program, which is accepting applications through the end of February.

Supporting New York-based non-profit 501(c)(3) conservation and community organizations, municipalities, State and Federally Recognized Tribal Nations and local and state agencies, the Climate Resilience Grant Program provides grants of up to $50,000 to protect lands and waters essential for adapting to climate change. The Nature Conservancy recognizes the challenges faced by communities with limited capacity, infrastructure and resources for adapting to and mitigating climate change. The Climate Resilience Grant Program seeks to fill some of these funding and resource gaps. In its first three years, the program has funded 39 projects with 23 organizations, providing roughly $1.2 million in funding.

The Climate Resilience Grant Program is part of the larger Connectivity, Climate and Communities Fund, which also includes the newly launched Resilient and Connected Appalachians Grant Program. The Fund’s overall areas of focus include:

·       Connectivity: Creating a connected network of resilient lands and waters – a biodiversity superhighway enabling plants and animals to adapt to a changing climate.

·       Climate: Protecting and managing forests that store significant amounts of carbon, accelerating the transition to well-sited renewable energy, and helping communities to adapt and mitigate impacts from flooding.

·       Communities: Supporting resilient communities, sustainable livelihoods and strong connections to their natural landscapes.

“At The Nature Conservancy we recognize the position we are in to provide resources and expertise to those working to accomplish similar goals,” said Heather Furman, Appalachians director. “It is our hope that this grant program advances important work in this region, builds lasting connections and brings us all closer to preserving and protecting important and critical lands.”

Conserving resilient and connected lands provides benefits to local people and communities. This is particularly critical in marginalized communities, including but not limited to communities with little to no access to high-quality green spaces, communities experiencing heightened impacts of climate change due to systemic under-investment and poor infrastructure, as well as traditionally marginalized communities of color. The community benefits that result from projects funded by the Climate Resilience Grant Program enable people and communities to cope with the effects of climate change and provide spaces for enhanced community well-being. 

In New York, The Nature Conservancy protects and sustains lands and waters on over 165,000 acres of fee-owned and conservation easement properties, and has partnered with other organizations and agencies to conserve an additional half-million acres across the state. 

“By collaborating on these efforts, we can simultaneously conserve vital habitat, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, build resilience to the impacts of climate change and generate new job and recreation opportunities,” said Furman. “Together, we can ensure a future where people, plants and animals have the freedom to adapt and thrive in a changing world.”

For more information about eligibility and guidelines, visit the website.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 70 countries and territories, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.