Bank of America Charitable Foundation Provides $1 Million Grant to The Nature Conservancy to Advance Work on Addressing Water Risks

Providing Opportunities to Protect Free-Flowing Rivers and Increase Coastal Resilience

Wednesday, December 7, 2016 12:00 pm EST

The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is the recipient of a $1 million grant from the Bank of America Charitable Foundation, which will support two critical TNC initiatives. The first initiative focuses on using the comprehensive system-scale planning approach to help countries balance the generation of renewable energy and the conservation of rivers that provide food, livelihoods and many other values to people – particularly in Asia, Africa and Latin America. The second program aims to scale up cost-effective investments in nature-based resilience approaches that will help protect communities from climate risks and extreme weather events.

Partnering to find solutions

The grant comes as The Nature Conservancy convenes its 2016 Global Water Summit in New York City December 6-8, where the organization is bringing together experts, partners and practitioners from across the world to develop solutions that can achieve lasting results in preserving the ecological integrity of rivers, lakes and groundwater systems.

“Today, nations around the world are transforming rivers to meet people’s growing needs for clean water and energy,” said Dr. Michelle Lakly, managing director of the Conservancy’s Saving Rivers Program. “Through ‘smart from the start’ planning with governments, companies and communities, we will influence how the expansion of renewable energy, including hydropower, is developed and managed to ensure the future health of our most critical rivers.”

Helping communities

Moreover, three-quarters of all large cities are located on the coast, where rising sea levels and the increasing intensity of storms pose climate-related risks. With Bank of America’s support, TNC’s work demonstrates that a natural infrastructure-based strategy for resilience can help protect millions of the world's most at-risk people, while providing ecological and economic value to their communities.

"We know that a healthy coral reef can take down 97 percent of a wave's energy before it crashes to the shore, and that just 100 meters of mangroves can reduce wave height by 67 percent, protecting lives and livelihoods in coastal communities and economies. Simply put, nature reduces risk,” said Kathy Baughman McLeod, managing director for the Conservancy’s Coastal Risk and Resilience Program. “It's a powerful source of resilience, and Bank of America’s recognition of this strategy – that is good for people and good for nature – is spot on.”

“At Bank of America, we are keenly focused on accelerating the transition to a low-carbon and sustainable economy – from our $125 billion environmental business initiative to our work with pioneering partners like The Nature Conservancy,” said Alex Liftman, Global Environmental executive at Bank of America. “TNC is developing innovative solutions for water security, resilience and other environmental challenges, and these initiatives will benefit our local communities and our planet.”

About The Nature Conservancy
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 unprecedented scale, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 65 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

About Bank of America
At Bank of America, our focus on Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) factors is critical to fulfilling our purpose of helping make people’s financial lives better. Our commitment to growing our business responsibly is embedded in every aspect of our company. It is demonstrated in the inclusive and supportive workplace we create for our employees, the responsible products and services we offer our customers, and the impact we make around the world in helping local economies thrive. An important part of this work is forming strong partnerships with nonprofits and advocate groups, such as community and environmental organizations, in order to bring together our collective networks and expertise to achieve greater impact. Learn more at, and connect with us on Twitter at @BofA_News.

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Reporters May Contact:
Kelly Sapp, Bank of America, 1.980.386.9514

Geraldine Henrich-Koenis, The Nature Conservancy, 703.841.3939