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Foundation Creates $100-Million Climate Change Initiative

9 April 2007

The Doris Duke Charitable Foundation announced a $100-million grant-making initiative to help build a clean-energy economy that can reduce the threat of global climate change to people and the environment.

The five-year DDCF Climate Change Initiative is focused on accelerating the adoption of available, practical approaches to reducing carbon emissions. The goal is to develop policies to bring off-the-shelf and new clean-energy technologies to market faster—including everything from building codes to policies that put a price on carbon.

The DDCF Climate Change Initiative will award up to $100 million in grants in the following three areas:

  • Pricing Policies for Greenhouse Gases: The foundation will support the development of optimal domestic and international pricing policies for carbon and other greenhouse gases, which will help existing and new clean-energy technologies become competitive in the marketplace.

  • Technology Deployment & Development Policies: The foundation will support the development of policies that bring available technologies to market more quickly – particularly technologies related to energy efficiency, renewable energy and lowemission uses of coal. The foundation also will support policies that stimulate the development of tomorrow’s clean-energy technologies.

  • Adaptation Strategies: The foundation will support efforts to begin assessing the likely effects of climate change and identify adjustments that can be made to reduce the impact of those effects. Given the DDCF Environment Program’s mission to preserve wildlife through habitat protection, the foundation may initially focus on examining the impact of climate change on biodiversity conservation.

The foundation expects that more than two-thirds of the initiative’s funds will support technology development and deployment policies.  To complement this policy work, the foundation will also support analytical efforts to design optimal pricing policies for greenhouse gases.

A precondition for the success of a clean-energy economy will be putting an appropriate price on carbon dioxide. At the same time, a price on carbon won’t be sufficient by itself to reduce emissions to manageable levels. That’s why we felt compelled to look ahead to the next critical step and have chosen to focus the bulk of our resources on complementary policies related to technology deployment and development.

—Dr. Joan Spero, president of DDCF

April 9, 2007 in Climate Change | Permalink | Comments (15) | TrackBack (0)


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"A precondition for the success of a clean-energy economy will be putting an appropriate price on carbon dioxide."

I don't mean to be cynical but they could spend $100m over the next 5 years just lobbying for this. Too much money riding on the status quo for a change like this anytime soon.

No kidding. If they wanted to make a real change, why not buy 10,000 ZAPs and give them to local municipalities with the understanding that they are to be used in lieu of gas-powered vehicles. Then you'd actually see changes, and spread the word while supporting the next generation of EVs.

Maybe this is not as crazy as it seems. Our problem is not lack of technology but lack of policies that encourage or mandate the reduction in energy use and the use of technologies that minimize or eliminate the use of fossil fuels. Rest assured the opponents of such initiatives will continue to spend hundreds of millions of dollars lobbying their representatives to do nothing. We need a counter lobby (no pun intended) and that takes lots of money.

Yes, it would be nice to spend tens of millions of dollars directly on things like EVs, but what happens after the money is spent? What needs to be done is to get the government and individuals to spend billions of dollars on such initiatives. This will only happen through political and legislative change.

I wonder if they'll come up with two million for Dr. Bussard to repeat the IEC fusion experiment he did for the US Navy? It's frustrating that so many people and institutions are willing to throw hundreds of millions at global warming, but nobody seems willing to spare a relatively tiny amount to investigate a technology that could, potentially, solve it all in one swoop.


These don't look like ill considered initiatives to me.

Simply the statement; We're a charity and we're going to throw 100 million at tackling climate change - is extremely powerful in itself.

And I'd say it's fairly safe bet that these people have a better understanding of where best to spend the money than any poster here.

Although, it's a pity they have to spend precious charity money on what responsible governments should already be doing but what else is new.

Would the grants be available for policy makers in the Philippines? I have a bioethanol project that requires funding, would this qualify?

Tony, Brussard's program is asking for $150-200M to move to a scaled net power model. Doubt $2M can do much in that field.

Our Foundation has set up a Philippine Biodiesel Fund (PBF) which seeks to provide financial assistance to small-medium enterprises (SME's) and/or farmer cooperatives in establishing jatropha plantations and modularized biodiesel refinery sites in key areas of the country . We have set up a pilot plant that processes coconut methyl esther and a 200-hectare jatropha plantation and a one million seedling bank in Tarlac. We thought of leveraging our Phil. Biodiesel Fund with your Fund. What is required to execute this tie-up?

Why don't we go back and resurrect the
electric cars GM killed about 5 years ago?
I'll tell you why, there was no after-market
for parts and service and it didn't use
1 drop of oil or gas. Therefore, this was
not palatable to GM or BIG OIL. You'll never have alternative fuels until someone
can eliminate the cause and effect of huge
donations from the BIG 3 and BIG OIL to our
politicians. Let's face it whether you like
it or not our politicians are paid stooges
to these industries. Then you've got the
leader of this administration who obviously
sold out to BIG OIL a long time ago. We'll
have to "take the bull by the horns" our-
selves because our politicians are not going
to "bite the hand that feeds them"!!!!

I'm working on a project to produce Grass Pellets. It would be great for everybody. The Environment,Famers,Homeowners (this would reduce heating bills and greenhouse gases and help the environment)To get this project started I need money to market this product.So if their are grants, how would one apply to see if they qualify for such a grant?

I'm working on a project to produce Grass Pellets. It would be great for everybody. The Environment,Famers,Homeowners (this would reduce heating bills and greenhouse gases and help the environment)To get this project started I need money to market this product.So if their are grants, how would one apply to see if they qualify for such a grant?


You have hit the nail on the head.

In a free market democracy, how can you stop, lobbies and rich influent groups, to buy (corrupt) politicians for favours?

A very strict election spending limit of $1/voter (100% paid by the government) may help to reduce lobbies growing influence, if you can stop cheating.

Where the dollar is all powerful, money can easily buy elections. There are a lot of voters (and politicians) for sale.

Get everyone to check that little $5 box on the 1040 tax return. If we can offset private money with public money, it might slow down buying favors for special interests. I have long favored public money for public office. It seems like everyone has a lobby but the individual tax payer.

We have a unique, proven, high power engine that could be fueled by CNG or biodiesel. This engine could be used in SUV's or most of the 1-ton to 2-ton sized pick-ups or delivery trucks. This market segment produces major emissions in urban areas. Venture Capital sources have refused to consider this type of industrial product. Who do we send funding proposals to?

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