Environmental Defense Fund Announces Key Grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies

August 20, 2012
Contact: 
Mica Odom, 512-691-3451, modom@edf.org

(New York, NY – August 20, 2012) Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) announced today that it has been awarded a 3-year, $6-million grant for its work to minimize the environmental impacts of natural gas operations through hydraulic fracturing. The funding will support EDF's strategy of securing strong rules and developing industry best practices in states with intensive natural gas production. The grant was awarded by Bloomberg Philanthropies, a recognized leader in global environmental efforts.

"EDF is grateful to Bloomberg Philanthropies for its generous support, and to the Mayor for his strong leadership on defining the correlation between protecting public health and tackling environmental issues," said EDF President Fred Krupp. "Our work is dedicated to safeguarding public health and the environment. No one should be forced to trade their children's health or their quality of life for cheap energy. There is a path forward for natural gas production if we get it right -- but that's a big “if.” The Mayor is helping to chart that path. Industry leaders are also realizing that the environmental impacts of shale gas production are real and must be addressed in order to help restore public trust. Americans deserve assurance that natural gas can be developed without sacrificing their health or their quality of life.”

In 2011, EDF President Fred Krupp played a key role on the U.S. Secretary of Energy's Advisory Board (SEAB) Shale Gas Production Subcommittee, which developed strong recommendations for improving oversight and reducing environmental and public health impacts from shale gas production.

EDF is working in states most impacted by the shale gas boom and will encourage better state regulation of natural gas development around five key principles:

  • Disclosing all chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing process, as well as chemicals used in drilling and operating wells, and requiring measurement and reporting of air emissions and the content of waste water; 
  • Optimizing rules for well construction and operation; 
  • Minimizing water consumption, protecting groundwater and ensuring proper disposal of wastewater; Improving air pollution controls, including capturing fugitive methane, a potent greenhouse gas; 
  • Reducing impacts to communities and ecosystems.

“Shale gas is reshaping our energy landscape and there is no question that abundant unconventional gas supplies are accelerating efforts to retire dirty, coal-fired power plants," said Michael R. Bloomberg, philanthropist and Mayor of New York City. “Affordable and abundant natural gas can be good for our environment and our economy and not negatively impact public health, but only if extracted responsibly. Communities in the middle of the natural gas boom face real environmental and public health risks and it's time for industry to stop glossing over the risks and accept more regulatory oversight.”

Bloomberg Philanthropies is actively involved in environmental issues around the world including a $50 million partnership with the Sierra Club on the Beyond Coal Campaign, and the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, where Mayor Bloomberg serves as Chair.

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About Environmental Defense Fund: EDF is a leading national nonprofit organization that creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. See edf.org; twitter.com/EnvDefenseFund; facebook.com/EnvDefenseFund; and http://blogs.edf.org/energyexchange/.

About Bloomberg Philanthropies: Bloomberg Philanthropies works primarily to advance five areas globally: the Environment, Public Health, Government Innovation, Education and the Arts. To date, more than $2.4 billion to has been donate. In 2011 alone, $330 million was distributed by Bloomberg Philanthropies, For more information visit bloombergdotorg.tumblr.com, follow @BloombergDotOrg or like us at https://www.facebook.com/bloombergdotorg.

For direct inquiries relating to Bloomberg Philanthropies please contact Mike Marinello, press@bloomberg.org.