About JUST EARTH

The JUST EARTH FUND

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Next LOI deadline: Tuesday, October 8th, 2019

8.13.19 - As we near the end of year one of Just Earth, we are filled with gratitude for all we have learned, the many connections we have made, and the forward-thinking partners whose investment has made this work possible.

Since beginning this journey, we have spoken with more than 50 attorneys and nonprofit staff members, attended a dozen events and conferences, brought a new staff member onto our team, surveyed environmental justice litigators about their work, and deployed more than $300,000 for environmental justice impact lawsuits - and we're not finished yet!

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Through this work, we have learned of environmental issues affecting grassroots and indigenous communities across our continent, as well as the valiant legal efforts underway to provide access to justice to build healthy, vibrant communities and restore balance to our earth.

  • In Canada, a community is trying to clean up a smelter spewing sulfur dioxide that is causing the local children to have asthma.

  • In the United States, 21 youth plaintiffs are standing up to the federal government and demanding action on climate change.

  • In Mexico, a David and Goliath type battle wages on, with two attorneys and a collection of NGOs and beekeepers taking on Monsanto and other global corporations to stop the spread of genetically modified corn across Mexico.

We remain grateful to play a role in strengthening these movements, and we look forward to hearing from you in an upcoming grant cycle (next LOI deadline: October 8).

10.03.18 - The Impact Fund is excited to announce the creation of the Just Earth Fund. This new fund, dedicated to supporting environmental justice impact litigation, represents a significant expansion of our environmental justice grantmaking.

Over the past 25 years, the Impact Fund has supported communities and organizations seeking environmental justice through grants for impact litigation. Today, this work has never been more important—or more challenged. Examples of recent cases we have supported demonstrate the scale and scope of impact case we fund:

  • In East Liverpool, Ohio, local residents and the Fair Shake Legal Services organization teamed up to get justice for residents and schoolchildren suffering from the pollution created by a nearby waste incinerator.

  • The people of Grassy Narrows First Nation in Ontario, Canada, successfully fought the expansion of clear cut logging along the Wabigoon River outside Ontario, which would have exacerbated mercury levels in local food supplies. 

  • The communities of Ookala on the Big Island of Hawaii, worked with the Center for Food Safety to sue Big Island Dairy for contaminating their water with animal waste and by spraying manure near local water sources, violating the Clean Water Act.

  • Residents of Matheny Tract, a small community in Central California, fought for their right to clean, arsenic-free drinking water—and won.

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Through these cases and others we’ve funded, the intersectional nature of environmental justice is clear, as too often environmental racism, gender, and class discrimination are key factors in injustice occurring. This new fund will continue our tradition of supporting the diverse litigation needs of communities and organizations working for environmental justice, but with some important changes.

Through the Just Earth Fund, we look forward to strengthening our existing partnerships and expanding our grantee community by increasing our average grant size and expanding our geographic scope from the United States to include Canada, and Mexico. Applicants may apply for grants up to $50,000 to cover out-of-pocket litigation expenses, such as filing fees, deposition costs, expert witness fees, and travel, as well as pre-filing work, such as investigations and scientific analysis. 

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Applicants may apply through our regular application process. Letters of inquiry are now being accepted and will be reviewed on a quarterly basis. For more information, including upcoming LOI deadlines, click here for more information or email Linda Gordon, our Grant Specialist.