People are uniting worldwide to protect the environment and work to mitigate the effects of climate change. One of the best ways to get involved is to donate to or join environmental nonprofits.
There are so many organizations to support that it can feel overwhelming to know where to begin. Many small, local charities and large corporations ask for your time, skills, and donations.
Top Nonprofit Environmental Organizations
When you support these charities, you are helping to protect the environment, enforce change, and create a better future.
1. Rainforest Alliance
This innovative nonprofit works in 70 countries to protect rainforests through sustainable farming. They protect land and make sure it is farmed using ethical techniques. The products grown on this land are given a certification to let buyers know that they are choosing a product that protects the rainforest.
Rainforest Alliance is working to find solutions to the problems caused by farming that drive climate change. They collaborate with farmers, local communities, companies, and consumers. They focus on finding long-term solutions to agriculture that help Indigenous people and local communities.
They have supported and trained over 4 million farm workers for 35 years. This is an excellent organization to help; they are driven by data and focused on equality.
This US company, formed in 2008, began as a small organization promoting clean energy. They want the world to move away from fossil fuels and instead focus on renewable alternatives like wind or solar. The 350 parts of their name relate to the “safe” amount of carbon dioxide that we can have in our atmosphere.
They promote activism for the environment by connecting local people. They provide opportunities to connect with other people in your area who are also interested in protecting the environment. You can donate to this organization and join their work on projects.
3. Sierra Club
This organization started with a small group wanting to protect the Sierra Nevada mountains. It now works worldwide to protect ecosystems, wild places, and resources.
Sierra Club has been successful in protecting 439 parks and monuments in the US. They also campaign for changes to laws that protect the environment and have helped 281 coal power plants work towards using clean energy.
This group aims to connect a diverse range of people with nature and create a healthy, connected community. This is another organization that you can donate to and join to meet like-minded people.
4. Friends of the Earth
Friends of the Earth is an international network of organizations. They are working to change political and economic systems worldwide to protect the environment.
This nonprofit is committed to helping the planet by promoting clean energy in a way that empowers local communities. This includes advocacy work to change public perception in the media and influence policymakers.
Friends of the Earth provides ways to donate to the causes they support. They have also created a system to connect people to act locally.
The organization has 200 attorneys working at every level of the judicial system. They represent clients for free and are always in support of the environment. Recently, they helped to protect grizzly bears in Yellowstone by overturning a decision in court. This has saved the delicate ecosystem and important biodiversity of the park.
Earthjustice is rated as a very ethical, committed, and transparent organization.
6. Sea Shepherd
Sea Shepherd enforces marine conservation laws through direct action like surveillance. They provide boats to patrol seas with crews, fuel, and the necessary expertise.
They help governments to arrest people who break marine laws. This includes detaining illegal trawling vessels and managing ocean areas to protect endangered species.
Sea Shepherd encourages governments to take control of their own ocean patrols and law enforcement.
7. The Nature Conservancy
This nonprofit focuses on limiting the effects of climate change and reducing biodiversity loss worldwide. They work to protect the environment by collaborating with local and Indigenous people.
The Nature Conservancy has a network of protected preserves you can visit and donate to. They also have programs where they plant trees to store carbon and work directly with companies to find renewable energy solutions.
8. Evergreen Action
This leading organization aims to protect the environment in the US by influencing and advancing environmental policy. The team includes top-level scientists, community leaders, and policymakers.
They are committed to protecting the environment and want to create millions of jobs in environment-focused industries, like renewable energy.
Donations aim to create a blueprint for a US policy that fights climate change.
9. 5 Gyres Institute
This nonprofit is a leader in the fight against plastic pollution. 5 Gyres Institute promotes individual and collective action against plastic waste.
A group of scientists formed the organization. Their work focuses on scientific research about plastic pollution and how best to engage with local people to drive change.
They co-published the first global research paper about the amount of plastic pollution in our oceans and are campaigning for sustainable and realistic solutions.
10. Earth Guardians
An essential part of protecting the environment is ensuring this will continue with future generations. Earth Guardians encourages young people across the world to create solutions for the biggest environmental problems.
They help to connect leaders and activists worldwide to drive climate action and promote a protected future. The organization promotes local environmental projects and fights legal battles for the planet. They also work to engage with young people by supporting environmental art, music, and storytelling.
Donations are essential to help, but you can join their action events through peaceful activism.
11. Grid Alternatives
Founded in 2013, Grid Alternatives Affiliates & Subsidiaries has a significant role in leading environmental nonprofit organizations globally. Grid Alternatives Affiliates & Subsidiaries, founded in 2013, has a team of 314 dedicated employees.
The organization leads with new ideas and projects to protect the environment and support economic sustainability in diverse communities worldwide. Grid Alternatives effectively uses its resources and partnerships to create plans that set an example for other leading organizations in the environmental sector.
12. National Parks Conservation Association
The National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) is a strong nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting America’s natural treasures. They work tirelessly to ensure the safety and preservation of these important areas. The NPCA’s main mission is to address national park threats and advocate for proper management.
NPCA works with important nonprofits, such as the World Wildlife Fund and Natural Resources Defense Council, to achieve its important goal.
NPCA focuses on connecting with the public to protect our national parks. The organization runs different programs to make people more aware of our national parks’ importance. These beautiful spaces are found all across the country.
Engaging in volunteering or learning activities within these green landscapes helps individuals gain a better understanding and respect for their conservation needs.
13. World Wildlife Fund
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) sets a global standard in wildlife conservation. As the world’s largest conservation organization, it has amassed over five million supporters. WWF supports over 1,300 environmental projects in more than 100 countries, ranging from Arctic ice to coral reefs.
They tirelessly collaborate with businesses and governments to implement helpful policies for nature and wildlife. Their dedication to charity reduces threats to biodiversity. They emphasize the importance of preserving all layers of life on Earth.
14. National Geographic Society
The National Geographic Society promotes global understanding and a strong commitment to the planet. The National Geographic Society’s work includes exploring natural landscapes, protecting endangered species, and educating young people about environmental science.
The organization raises awareness about climate change and other ecological issues through TV documentaries, publications, and scientific expeditions. They aim to inform the public about these pressing concerns. It connects with other nonprofits, supporting their joint efforts for environmental causes globally.
National Geographic is dedicated to achieving harmony between humans and nature. They relentlessly pursue sustainable solutions to protect America’s parks and promote biodiversity in diverse habitats worldwide.
15. Ocean Conservancy
Ocean Conservancy plays a vital role in preserving marine environments. Ocean Conservancy is an important organization that leads the way in finding solutions to serious problems in the ocean. They support sustainable fisheries and fight against pollution from trash in the water.
When Ocean Conservancy teams up with other nonprofits like Earthjustice and the Climate Reality Project, their reach and impact increase significantly. Ocean Conservancy also works with Rainforest Alliance to promote climate-conscious land management and support sustainable economic development.
Their main focus is to find a balance between what humans need and the planet’s health. They are fighting against severe environmental threats that are affecting our oceans.
16. Conservation International
Conservation International plays a pivotal role in environmental protection on a global scale. This organization works with governments, communities, and businesses to protect nature and encourage sustainable practices.
One of the leading nonprofit environmental organizations has implemented creative solutions to protect nature across the globe.
This organization has a great history of success, and its influence is seen in 77 countries. Under their watchful guidance, over 1,200 protected areas have thrived.
Conservation International provided valuable advice during the negotiations for the important Paris Agreement. Conservation International’s expertise helped inform more than 20 governments about urgent climate changes impacting our planet today.
Greenpeace captures global attention with its bold approach to environmental activism. They take direct action to fight against deforestation, pollution, and climate change globally.
Greenpeace has successfully convinced Burger King to end harmful contracts related to rainforest beef production. Greenpeace shows how a nonprofit can greatly impact saving our planet for the future. They mainly rely on donations for their work.
19. National Park Foundation
The National Park Foundation plays a vital role in protecting the environment. They support impactful philanthropy by providing resources for effective coastal management decisions.
We collaborate with other nonprofits to help them achieve their goals and reach more people. The foundation shows its dedication to protecting and preserving national parks like Grand Teton National Park and other important ecosystems across the country.
Fostering stewardship through public engagement helps conserve natural resources and protect our ever-changing environments. This fosters landmark conservation efforts for our world’s precious areas of abundance.
20. Environmental Defense Fund
The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) stands tall among the leading nonprofit environmental organizations. The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) focuses on solving problems with new and creative methods. They incorporate science, economics, and strong legal knowledge into their approach.
They aim to conserve the present and work towards a sustainable future for everyone. They have worked tirelessly to protect nature for several decades and have an impressive record of success.
They do important work to fight climate change, protect endangered species, and create health policies. The team at EDF doesn’t just rely on past accomplishments. They continually set ambitious goals to create solutions for our survival on Earth.
Natural Resources Defense Council
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) focuses on multiple environmental issues. One of their main missions is overhauling U.S. energy systems for a more sustainable future. The NRDC’s mission includes promoting renewable energy, supporting energy efficiency, and encouraging sustainable transportation practices.
The NRDC works hard to create conservation strategies that help fight deforestation, especially in the Amazon rainforest and Brazil. To address environmental challenges, the NRDC works with government agencies, businesses, and communities to create innovative solutions.
They use lawsuits to challenge harmful practices and support stronger environmental protection.
Why are Environmental Organizations Important?
The planet is experiencing a dramatic change in its climate. This is happening at a pace that has not been seen in the earth’s history.
2021 was the 6th warmest year on record, with all previous years since 2013 also being the warmest. This is because of an increase in greenhouse gases, which have increased in the atmosphere since the Industrial Revolution.
We have witnessed the impact of this rise in temperature first-hand. In 2021, there was a sharp increase in extreme weather events worldwide. Ice sheets in the Arctic and Antarctica decrease by billions of tons yearly. Sea levels have risen twice as fast in the last 20 years than in the previous century.
This is why supporting nonprofit organizations in protecting the environment is essential. They are working to change human behavior so that we can limit the harmful effects of climate change.
This is by no means an exhaustive list, and there are many more organizations you can support. An excellent way to help is to choose organizations or projects close to home. This could include joining grassroots work in your local neighborhood or campaigning to change policies in your country.
Donating and supporting a range of charities that you feel connected to is essential. Whoever you support, make sure you are passionate about their work.
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