Ceres

Rating: 4.87 stars   45 reviews

Issues: Environment

Location: 99 Chauncy Street 6th Floor Boston MA 02111 USA

Mission: Mobilize investor and business leadership to build a thriving, sustainable global economy.
Results: Ceres has achieved dramatic results our 20-plus year history, most recently including: In August 2012, Ceres helped to achieve a truly historic strengthening in fuel economy standards for cars and light-duty trucks sold in the United States. By 2025, vehicle fleets will need to average 54.5 miles per gallon, nearly double the level of today. This milestone rule is a win-win-win for consumers, the economy, and U.S. job creation. Ceres played a pivotal role in mobilizing business and investor support for the rule and in publishing reports demonstrating the job creation benefits of higher fuel economy standards. In September, Ceres mobilized more than 18 companies, including major consumer brands and several Fortune 500 firms, to write a letter to Congress urging the renewal of the Production Tax Credit for renewable energy. Ceres is unique in its ability to convene such a strong force of Fortune 500 companies to weigh in favor of this important measure. The strong message from these companies, many of which are members of Ceres’ BICEP program (Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy) demonstrates how a broad cross-section of U.S. companies are already relying on inexpensive and abundant American wind energy to power their businesses. Also this fall, Ceres published a groundbreaking report on the vulnerability of the insurance industry to climate change. Ceres has identified the insurance industry as a key potential driver of change, because of the “double jeopardy” it faces. The industry is reeling from record losses ($32 billion in 2011 alone) due to extreme weather events that are increasingly exacerbated by climate change. And with more than $23 million in assets globally, insurers are also exposed to climate risk in their investment portfolios. With our reports and other pressure, Ceres aims to waken the sleeping giant of the insurance industry and spur it to take bold leadership action on climate change—action that will have reverberations throughout the economy. Finally, in 2012, Ceres was named by Philanthropedia, a project of the charity watchdog group Guidestar, as one of the top 10 nonprofit organizations in the country working to combat climate change. Ceres is honored to be recognized for our unique approach to climate change issues: bringing together businesses, investors, and policymakers to build a healthy global economy. Among the comments of the 121 expert reviewers in the climate change field who participated in Philanthropedia’s survey: Ceres was admired for its “clarity of purpose,” “definitive niche,” and “very clear view of what is required to drive change.”
Programs: Ceres is an advocate for sustainability leadership. Ceres mobilizes a powerful network of investors, companies and public interest groups to accelerate and expand the adoption of sustainable business practices and solutions to build a healthy global economy. To accomplish our goals, we work with leading companies, investors, public interest groups, policymakers and other economic players to advance sustainable solutions that will reduce carbon emissions and other pollutants, protect vital natural resources like water supplies, ensure safe and just working conditions for employees and reduce our reliance on fossil fuels while transitioning to a clean energy economy. Ceres is uniquely situated at the nexus of the business, investment and advocacy communities. Drawing on the expertise of the Ceres Coalition, we convene and direct stakeholder engagements with Ceres network companies to find smart strategies and meaningful performance improvements on key environmental and social issues. Our unique engagement model features diverse teams of credible, external stakeholders that provide ongoing input to companies on policies, strategies, disclosure and bottom-line performance. In addition to working with investors in the Ceres Coalition, Ceres directs the Investor Network on Climate Risk (INCR), a network of 100 leading investors collectively managing more than $10 trillion in assets. Ceres helps INCR members leverage their power as shareholders to secure meaningful commitments on sustainability issues companies are facing. Through shareholder resolutions and face-to-face meetings, investors working with Ceres are asking companies to boost their focus and transparency on sustainability-related risks and set tangible performance goals for mitigating those risks – whether by lowering carbon emissions, reducing water and energy use or developing more sustainable technologies and products. Ceres is also working with investors, Wall Street analysts, credit rating agencies and other financial firms to integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) risks and opportunities into day-to-day decision-making. Ceres produces cutting-edge reports on wide-ranging sustainability topics, including global water scarcity risks, challenges from unconventional oil extraction, corporate climate change strategies, and regulatory/policy-related analyses. Our reports highlight key sustainability risks in the global economy and define new standards and corporate/investor best practices for responding.

2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars   Featured Review

By focusing on capital markets, the small, sharp team at Ceres has tremendous leverage. As a supporter, I can hardly imagine getting more bang for my dollar. This is an organization that's worth knowing.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Ceres work with Corporations, especially investors, is playing a unique role in the Climate transition to Clean Energy. Bringing the risks of continued investment in long-term fossil infrastructure and resources is one of the most important approaches to creating this change … change that requires doing things in a very different way.

Ceres work is unique and incredibly important.

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

Sustainability is no longer a pastime for armchair intellectuals. It is slowly but surely assuming a major role in the healthy continuance of life on earth.
As the science of the art of prevailing on the adversity of collaborating opposites, sustainability aims at creating a mutually participatory Cause ⇄ Effect platform of cre­ative de­struction, of out-of-equilibrium, “middle-out” homeostatic adaptive trade-off between allocat­ion and growth, supervised by a source-moderated utilization of Nature. Being a inter- and intra-disciplinary issue with deep and interactive roots in thermodynamics, chaos, complexity and nonlinearity, understanding and appreciation of sustainability calls for much more than neighbourhood get-togethers. It is in this spirit that organizations like Ceres assume defining significance in the propagation, patronage, well-being, and growth of a less-than-intuitive paradigm that sustainability represents.
Sustainability is an out-of-equilibrium phase of Nature, supported by "life" and land-marked by "birth" and "death", much more indeed beyond Brundtland. Newtonian reductionism that we acquire --- and pass onto future generations --- fail to address these issues except for the obviously trivial. In situations such as these begging paradigmatic shift in our attitude to and relationship with the mainstream, dedicated support of organizations like Ceres with the capacity, potency and fortitude to address complex issues are inevitably needed.
Sustainability is much more than rallies, demonstrations, politicians, corporates, climate change, and green economy, important as these might well be. They cannot be substitutes for the analysis-debate-synthesis dialectic of the academia, of a nascent science of the 21st century awaiting a much-needed take-off. Without an academic foundation, it is unlikely to graduate from the present polemical state to the class-room where it rightly belongs.
Ceres, I believe, is uniquely positioned with its rich and varied background of a quarter century, to play the proverbial role of a facilitator and negotiator between academic and corporate social responsibility worlds (and the state) to foster a beneficial homeostasis that either on its own cannot hope to achieve.

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Rating: 4 stars  

CERES SENSITIZES US TO THE ISSUES THAT MATTER FOR THE PLANET AND HAS DONE A GOOD JOB WITH WATER AND MANY OTHER ISSUES. I BELIEVE ALL NON PROFITS IN THE SUSTAINABILITY SPACE CAN LEARN FROM CERES ON HOW TO DEEPEN KNOWLEDGE ON KEY SUBJECTS.
RAVI FERNANDO

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I discovered Ceres over a year ago and I have been telling my friends about it ever since. Ceres offers big companies an opportunity to work profitably toward sustainability. And, reading about its endeavors Ceres has spurred me to begin converting my investments to sustainable ones. As a member of Citizens Climate Lobby, Ceres gives me an important viewpoint as I work toward influencing members of our government to put an increasing tax on carbon based fuel at their source and return all dividends to the citizens through the IRS (revenue neutral). Anne Bachner

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Rating: 5 stars  

As founder and chair of the small non profit company Budgets of Care Limited I have both used the example of, and information from, CERES to grow our influence and understanding within our own community.

I am particularly delighted with CERES influence on many large investor organisations and how they encourage the use of capital for the betterment of businesses throughout the world.

They are certainly one of the most important forces that is help bringing about what Tellus calls the "Great Transition".

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am an unpaid lobbyist for nuclear energy, and watched Ceres, Mindy Lubber, hosting the UN Climate Investor Summit 2015. The conference was well organised with experts in climate science, insurance risk and fiduciary duty - to name a few. Discussing divestment from fossil fuel as a means to mitigate climate change from rising carbon emissions. Moreover, the conference was but one of a series of many more to come, so that governments of the world will not only recognise carbon emissions must be reduced, but commit to investment in 'clean' technologies such as nuclear energy, hydro, solar, and battery storage. Moreover, the conference addressed the need for global inequality and the need for poor countries to be funded for their economies and standard of living to improve. The link to watch this event - part 1 & 2. http://www.ceres.org/investor-network/investor-summit --- A vote of support for Ceres is essentially, a vote to save the planet, a vote for clean air, a vote for your children's, children. There are many worthy non-profits out there that need support. If there were one specifically for Ebola, that would be a global priority as well. But now, we need most of the worlds cooperation and it is Ceres who has managed to pull together most of the worlds attention. Time is not on our side, and if Ceres didn't already exist, the world is be serious trouble. Make our home, Earth, your first priority. People all over the world need their help - and that's what they are more than capable of giving. Sincerely, d'O'yle

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Role: Professional with expertise in this field
Rating: 5 stars  

If you're looking to improve climate outcomes, Ceres is simply the best team to bet on.

How does this organization compare with others in the same sector?

Very Well

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you recommend this organization to others?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2014

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Rating: 5 stars  

The Ceres Roadmap to Sustainability offers a demanding, but practical and achievable set of expectations for a diverse set of stakeholders who can make sustainability mainstream. The Ceres team knows how to persevere and engage different communities, investors, business, citizens in order to accomplish their mission of advancing a low-carbon, clean energy future.

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Rating: 4 stars  

In June 2013, Ceres came to Toronto, Canada to run a first ever workshop to bring together the insurance industry and many infrastructure providers to develop a better understanding of how to manage risks associated with climate change. This was a highly effective meeting which resulted in new communication amongst stakeholders and at least one major specific initiative, which is an agreement to develop resilient buidling guidelines. The staff were very professional in their work and as a City of Toronto staff member working on the issue of resilience to extreme weather associated with climate change, I would be quick to collaborate with Ceres again on the climate resilience issue as it affects Toronto.

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