Also this week, African climate activists and a popular Berkeley class
Susan Shain, Shola Lawal and
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Last summer, when we discussed how to make your climate change donations count, our reporting suggested that one of the most effective strategies is donating to political campaigns.
But what if you’re not into politics and would rather help out a nonprofit organization instead? Unless you’re a scientist or policy wonk, figuring out who’s actually making a difference can feel like an impossible task.
A good place to start would be Founders Pledge. That group — inspired by effective altruism, a broad social movement that relies on evidence and analysis to determine where donations will do the most good — helps entrepreneurs navigate the world of giving, in part by examining which charities offer the greatest return on investment.
John Halstead, the group’s head of applied research, spent nine months writing a 152-page report aimed at climate change philanthropists. He ultimately recommended the Coalition for Rainforest Nations and the Clean Air Task Force as the most cost-effective organizations. The report cited the groups’ past successes in fighting global deforestation and supporting clean energy innovation.
Other adherents of the effective altruism movement have backed BURN, a social enterprise that lets donors finance fuel-efficient stoves in Kenya, and The Clean Energy Innovation Program, a subset of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. (Disclosure: Both the Clean Air Task Force and Clean Energy Innovation Program support the expansion of advanced nuclear power.)
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