Grants

Category Environment

2016 $122,916

Citizens For Conservation

Project Title
Native Habitat Intern Restoration Project
Amount
$16,616
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Barrington, IL

Funding for four, college summer interns who participate in weed control, seed production, planting plugs, education functions, and other miscellaneous conservation issues as part of a native habitat restoration project to return the Flint Creek Savanna, and other critical properties in the Barrington area, to their original (pre-1840) condition of tall grass prairie, oak and hickory savannas, sedge meadows, and wetlands as a habitat for bluebirds, bob-o-links and sand hill cranes.

Dekalb County Community Gardens – Walnut Grove Vocational Farm

Project Title
Walnut Grove Vocational Farm
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
DeKalb, IL

DeKalb County Community Gardens empowers DeKalb County residents to choose healthy, sustainable foods through community education and participation. Funding supports a prairie restoration program at Walnut Grove Vocational Farm, a place providing agriculturally based training and employment for people with disabilities in an integrated supportive setting. In addition, funding supports the needed materials to build a bridge connecting prairie paths and cross streams. The path allows individuals with multiple physical limitations to enjoy the restorative therapy benefits of the prairie.

Environmental Law & Policy Center

Project Title
Protecting the Driftless Area's Clean Water, Habitat and Natural Areas
Amount
$20,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Chicago, IL

ELPC is the Midwest’s leading public interest environmental legal advocacy organization. The Driftless Area is a beautiful scenic landscape of rolling hills and blufflands, meandering valley streams and small town and family farms straddling the Mississippi River. It’s also the Midwest’s premier biodiversity and habitat hotspot. ELPC is exploring ways to protect clean water, wildlife habitat and important natural areas in the Driftless Area which is threatened by agricultural runoff. The volume of pollution spilling into waterways from livestock and farming operations continues to grow each year. Excess nutrient pollution can result in toxic algal blooms that choke drinking water supplies, and contribute to downstream low- or no- oxygen dead zones. ELPC will conduct a thorough analysis of available and effective methods for controlling nutrient pollution and develop initial policy recommendations for making those methods more accessible and attractive to farmers. This grant builds on a prior grant in support of the 2015 Confluence Conference in which the Driftless area was established as a priority.

Forest Preserve Foundation

Project Title
Habitat Enhancement at Shoe Factory Nature Preserve
Amount
$5,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Chicago, IL

The Forest Preserve Foundation dedicates energy and resources needed to connect people with nature in Cook County. This grant builds upon previous work at the Shoe Factory Nature Preserve in Hoffman Estates – funded, in part, by the Oberweiler Foundation. Shoe Factory is one of Illinois’ oldest and most biologically significant nature preserves receiving 15,000 to 20,000 visitors each year. The small site provides habitat for rare plants and insects including little bluestem, northern dropseed, porcupine grass and over 100 other prairie species. Vulnerable to encroachment, the site is in need of care including the removal of trees shading out the prairie and reseeding.

Friends of the Chicago River

Project Title
Metropolitan Water Reclamation District Land Leasing Project
Amount
$25,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Chicago, IL

This is the first year of a two year grant ($25,000 per year). Friends of the Chicago River’s mission is to improve and protect the Chicago River system for people, plants, and animals. The MWRD Land Leasing project aims to protect thousands of acres along the Chicago and Calumet rivers thereby expanding forest preserves, connecting trails and providing important connected green healthy open space along the river. Friends will identify and recruit partners who will lease, protect, and manage priority MWRD parcels in ways that meet the goals of increasing conservation and recreation opportunities.

Land Conservancy of McHenry County

Project Title
Wolf Oak Woods Preserve
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Woodstock, IL

First year of a three-year grant ($10,000 in 2016; $40,000 in 2017 and 2018). The Land Conservancy works with individuals and communities to preserve and restore natural scenic and agricultural land resources for the benefit of current and future generations. Grant supports the purchase of a 30 acre parcel of land between McHenry and Woodstock. The property contains, along with key elements of McHenry County’s natural heritage, a 350-year old Wolf Oak visible from the road. Preservation of the property will create an “Ambassador Site” for TLC. It will be used to raise awareness and community engagement in TLC’s work, the issue of oak woodland conservation, and the ecological relationship between oak woods and wetlands in the McHenry County landscape.

Openlands Project

Project Title
Headwater Streams in the Chicago Wilderness
Amount
$16,300
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Chicago, IL

Second of a two year grant ($10,000 in 2015; $16,300 in 2016). Headwater streams are a dominant feature in our landscape. But, headwater streams and their often unique and rare habitats are left unprotected and subject to loss or degradation. Over the past 6 years, the Oberweiler Foundation has funded through Openlands a number of headwater stream inventories. This put Openlands in a unique position to influence the habitat protection and restoration focus of a large number of local conservation agencies throughout the Chicago Wilderness region. With this grant, Openlands will prepare a major report that will give the guidance and motivation to conservation agencies so that headwater streams becomes a new priority habitat of concern and preservation.

The Wetlands Initiative

Project Title
Dixon Waterfowl Refuge
Amount
$20,000
Category
Environment
Year
2016
Location
Chicago, IL

A three-year grant ($10,000 in 2014, $20,000 each in 2015 & 2016) to support the acquisition and restoration of the Dixon Waterfowl Refuge at Hennepin & Hopper Lakes in North-Central Illinois, one of only 36 wetlands of international importance in the country. TWI will restore 288 acres to an extremely rare grouping of native habitats, including globally imperiled oak savanna and sand prairie, benefiting many birds and wildlife. The parcel of land is regionally, nationally, and internationally recognized for its excellent biodiversity and critical importance to migrating waterfowl and breeding wetland birds.

2015 $122,117

Citizens For Conservation

Project Title
Native Habitat Intern Restoration Project
Amount
$16,617
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Barrington, IL

Funding for four, college summer interns who participate in weed control, seed production, planting plugs, education functions, and other miscellaneous conservation issues as part of a native habitat restoration project to return the Flint Creek Savanna, and other critical properties in the Barrington area, to their original (pre-1840) condition of tall grass prairie, oak and hickory savannas, sedge meadows, and wetlands as a habitat for bluebirds, bob-o-links and sand hill cranes.

Environmental Law & Policy Center

Project Title
2015 Confluence Conference
Amount
$5,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Chicago, IL

Funding for a high-level symposium bringing together leading Great Lakes scientists and policymakers to better understand Great Lakes water quality problems stemming from nutrient loading. Problems are caused in large part by unsustainable fertilization practices in industrial agriculture.

Forest Preserve Foundation

Project Title
Protection of Shoe Factory Nature Preserve
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Chicago, IL

The Forest Preserve Foundation dedicates energy and resources needed to connect people with nature in Cook County. This grant will help the Foundation reach its Next Century Conservation Plan as it applies to the Shoe Factory Nature Preserve in Hoffman Estates. Shoe Factory is one of Illinois’ oldest and most biologically significant nature preserves receiving 15,000 to 20,000 visitors each year. The small site provides habitat for rare plants and insects including little bluestem, northern dropseed, porcupine grass and over 100 other prairie species. Vulnerable to encroachment, the site is in need of care including maintenance and fencing.

Land Conservancy Of McHenry County

Project Title
Giving Tuesday
Amount
$2,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Woodstock, IL

The Land Conservancy works with individuals and communities to preserve and restore natural scenic and agricultural land resources for the benefit of current and future generations. Discretionary grant given as part of a matching program on “Giving Tuesday.”

discretionary

National Resources Defense Council

Project Title
In Defense of Monarch Butterflies
Amount
$1,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
New York, NY

Funding to support NRDC’s legal suit to block approval of Dow’s newest toxic herbicide, Enlist Duo, which threatens to destroy milkweed – the only food that monarch butterfly larvae can eat. Monarch populations have already plunged due to other chemicals more than 80% in the nation’s farm belt. Grant will support NRDC’S campaign to the EPA to protect butterflies from this chemical assault and to counter the pro-pesticide propaganda by the agrichemical industry.

discretionary

Nature Conservancy

Project Title
Nachusa Grasslands Preserve
Amount
$30,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Chicago, IL

Second year of a two-year grant at $30,000 per year to assist in funding the reintroduction of Bison not seen in 175 years to the Nachusa Grasslands Preserve to reclaim Illinois’ once historic prairie landscape at the Kankakee Sands Preserve which spans the Illinois/Indiana border and totals 25,000 acres of protected prairie and savanna. In addition, conservation management of this historic land will reconnect the Emiquon floodplain to the Illinois River to create a healthier freshwater system.

Openlands Project

Project Title
Headwater Streams in the Chicago Wilderness
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Chicago, IL

First of two-year grant ($10,000 in 2015; $16,300 in 2016)Headwater streams are a dominant feature in our landscape. But, headwater streams and their often unique and rare habitats are left unprotected and subject to loss or degradation. Over the past 6 years, the Oberweiler Foundation has funded through Openlands a number of headwater stream inventories. This put Openlands in a unique position to influence the habitat protection and restoration focus of a large number of local conservation agencies throughout the Chicago Wilderness region. With this grant, Openlands will prepare a major report that will give the guidance and motivation to conservation agencies so that headwater streams becomes a new priority habitat of concern and preservation.

Preservation Foundation of Lake County Forest Preserves

Project Title
Habitat Restoration at Grassy lake Forest Preserve
Amount
$2,500
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Libertyville, IL

The Preservation Foundation’s goal in restoring 116-acre Grassy Lake is to establish a sustainable, diverse native plant community to improve the ecological function of critical habitats, including wetlands, floodplain forest, savanna, and prairie. Primary restoration strategies include eradicating the remaining invasive species, which are choking out the wetlands and floodplain forest areas of the preserve, and planting native seeds, shrubs and trees to restore the site’s hydrology and biodiversity.

discretionary

Vital Ground Foundation

Project Title
Elk Flats Neighbors Conservation Easement Project - Phase One
Amount
$25,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Missoula, MT

Part of VG’s Swan Valley Grizzly Bear Habitat Conservation Initiative. Three contiguous conservation easements will permanently protect 160 acres of prime grizzly bear habitat on private property from development. The Elk Flats Project is ideally located in a wild and remote area in the Swan Mountain Range that is bordered by protected land in a critical habitat linkage zone.

geographic exception

Wetlands Initiative

Project Title
Dixon Waterfowl Refuge
Amount
$20,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Chicago, IL

A three-year grant ($10,000 in 2014, $20,000 each in 2015 & 2016) to support the acquisition and restoration of the Dixon Waterfowl Refuge at Hennepin & Hopper Lakes in North-Central Illinois, one of only 36 wetlands of international importance in the country. TWI will restore 288 acres to an extremely rare grouping of native habitats, including globally imperiled oak savanna and sand prairie, benefiting many birds and wildlife. The parcel of land is regionally, nationally, and internationally recognized for its excellent biodiversity and critical importance to migrating waterfowl and breeding wetland birds.

2014 $89,189

Citizens For Conservation

Project Title
Native Habitat Intern Restoration Project
Amount
$16,189
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
Barrington, IL

Funding for four, college summer interns who participate in weed control, seed production, planting plugs, education functions, and other miscellaneous conservation issues as part of a native habitat restoration project to return the Flint Creek Savanna, and other critical properties in the Barrington area, to their original (pre-1840) condition of tall grass prairie, oak and hickory savannas, sedge meadows, and wetlands as a habitat for bluebirds, bob-o-links and sand hill cranes.

Environmental Law & Policy Center

Project Title
Energy Foundation Coal Match
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
Chicago, IL

Funding to complete a challenge grant provided by the Energy Foundation to enhance ELPC’s legal advocacy to force old, highly polluting coal plants in the Midwest to clean up or shut down in order to prevent continued mercury and thermal pollution of the Great Lakes, rivers/streams, and groundwater as well as noxious, sulfuric air pollution.

Friends of the Chicago River

Project Title
Water Quality Standards Improvement Project
Amount
$20,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
Chicago, IL

The centerpiece of Friends’ policy initiatives and advocacy efforts this project focuses upon the disinfection of sewage plant effluent and adjustments to temperature standards for improving the water quality of the Chicago River so that it can support a diverse range of aquatic life, be fully utilized as a recreational resource, and eliminate a severe health risk.

National Resources Defense Council

Project Title
Partnership for the Earth – Save Endangered Wild Places
Amount
$1,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
New York, NY

Specifically, to preserve vastly more wilderness through market-driven solutions that will spur industry to transform destructive practices. In this case, to pressure Northern Dynasty Minerals to abandon plans for gouging out the disastrous Pebble Mine from Alaska’s spectacular Bristol Bay wilderness and devastate the World’s greatest wild salmon runs, the linchpin of an unspoiled ecosystem.

discretionary

National Resources Defense Council

Project Title
Bees In Crisis From Agrochemicals
Amount
$1,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
New York, NY

All over the country, bees are dying in massive numbers, as many as 35 % of all bee colonies have collapsed in a single winter, with some regions reporting die-offs of 50% or more. The cornerstone of some of the some of the most fundamental life-sustaining processes on Earth is being driven towards disaster because of agrochemicals. The $1,000 grant will support NRDC’S campaign to the EPA to protect bees from this chemical assault and to counter the pro-pesticide propaganda by the agrichemical industry.

discretionary

Nature Conservancy

Project Title
Nachusa Grasslands Preserve
Amount
$30,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
Chicago, IL

A two-year grant at $30,000 per year to assist in funding the reintroduction of Bison not seen in 175 years to the Nachusa Grasslands Preserve to reclaim Illinois’ once historic prairie landscape at the Kankakee Sands Preserve which spans the Illinois/Indiana border and totals 25,000 acres of protected prairie and savanna. In addition, conservation management of this historic land will reconnect the Emiquon floodplain to the Illinois River to create a healthier freshwater system.

Sum of Us

Project Title
Save the Bees
Amount
$1,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
New York, NY

discretionary

Wetlands Initiative

Project Title
Dixon Waterfowl Refuge
Amount
$10,000
Category
Environment
Year
2014
Location
Chicago, IL

A three-year grant ($10,000 in 2014, $20,000 each in 2015 & 2016) to support the acquisition and restoration of the Dixon Waterfowl Refuge at Hennepin & Hopper Lakes in North-Central Illinois, one of only 36 wetlands of international importance in the country. TWI will restore 288 acres to an extremely rare grouping of native habitats, including globally imperiled oak savanna and sand prairie, benefiting many birds and wildlife. The parcel of land is regionally, nationally, and internationally recognized for its excellent biodiversity and critical importance to migrating waterfowl and breeding wetland birds.

2013 $129,190

Citizens for Conservation

Project Title
Native Habitat Intern Restoration Project
Amount
$16,190
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Barrington, IL

Funding for four, college summer interns who participate in weed control, seed production, planting plugs, education functions, and other miscellaneous conservation issues as part of a native habitat restoration project to return the Flint Creek Savanna, and other critical properties in the Barrington area, to their original (pre-1840) condition of tall grass prairie, oak and hickory savannas, sedge meadows, and wetlands as a habitat for bluebirds, bob-o-links and sand hill cranes.

Clean Wisconsin

Project Title
Mercury Pollution Reduction Campaign
Amount
$15,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Madison, WI

A fourth year and final extension of a grant to reduce toxic mercury pollution, especially at the proposed Elm Road Coal Plant. Methylmercury contamination poses a significant health risk, especially for developing fetuses and children. Clean Wisconsin is advocating for the adoption of stronger mercury reduction rules for the state’s power plants and for a ban on certain products containing mercury. Also, it is necessary to prevent future illegal sources of mercury pollution, such as the proposed cooling system for the Elm Road plant, which would add significant mercury pollution to Lake Michigan.

Friends of the Chicago River

Project Title
Water Quality Standards Improvement Project
Amount
$20,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Chicago, IL

The centerpiece of Friends’ policy initiatives and advocacy efforts which focuses upon a disinfection of sewage plant effluent and adjustments to temperature standards for improving the water quality of the Chicago River so that it can support a diverse range of aquatic life, be fully utilized as a recreational resource, and eliminate a severe health risk.

Land Conservancy of MchHenry County

Project Title
Development Expansion Program
Amount
$15,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Woodstock, IL

A grant to assist the Conservancy in expanding its capacity to effectively manage stewardship of its growing owned, managed, and preserved properties portfolio, increase and develop stewardship income streams through contracts with conservation easement land owners.

National Resources Defense Council

Project Title
Partnership for the Earth - Save Endangered Wild Places
Amount
$8,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
New York, NY

A grant matched by the Vervane Foundation to win permanent protection of endangered wild regions that surround and encompass NRDC BioGems – unspoiled ecosystems threatened by development. Specifically, to preserve vastly more wilderness through market-driven solutions that will spur industry to transform destructive practices, with the NRDC will insure is permanent by helping to craft far reaching agreements with governments and landowners wherever possible.

discretionary

Openlands Project

Project Title
Kishwaukee River Landowner's Collaborative Project
Amount
$30,000
Category
Environment
Year
2013
Location
Chicago, IL

The purpose of this project is to lay the groundwork for a long-needed approach to outreach to, and enlist the participation private property owners to protect and enhance the biodiversity in this valuable river system. The project would expand the natural resource baseline data of the Kishwaukee River watershed, while identifying a minimum of 1000 landowners who would participate in protecting and enhancing riparian habitat on their property contiguous to the River. Openlands will lead this effort to build commitments from the individual members of the Kishwaukee River Ecosystem Partnership made up the Boone County and McHenry County Conservation Districts, the DeKalb and Winnebago County Forest Preserve Districts, the Natural Land Institute, the Land Conservancy of McHenry County, Northern Illinois University, and the Rockford Park District.

Vital Ground Foundation

Project Title
Alvord Lake Community Forest Project
Amount
$25,000
Category
Environment
Year
2015
Location
Missoula, MT

The mission of Vital Ground is to protect and restore North America’s grizzly bear populations by conserving wildlife habitat through the primary strategy of land acquisition and conservation easements. The 143-acre piece of land at Alvord Lake (east of Troy, Montana) is home to grizzly bears, lynx, wolverines and loons giving it significant conservation value. Seeking to protect the land from undesirable and certain development, Vital Ground partnered with the owners, community and other funders to purchase the land. The project is unique in its benefits not only to environmental conservation and education, but its focus on securing public access and enjoyment of the entirety of Alvord Lake.

geographic exception

Total: $463,412