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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Ceres

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment

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.

Community Stories

16 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been a supporter of Ceres for seven years, or in other words, since I have had kids and begun to grow increasingly concerned about the future of our planet--for their sakes, if not my own. Ceres has given me a hopeful and inspiring outlet for addressing my concerns by investing in their success. I have been so impressed by Ceres' mission and vision, as well as the organization's professional and on point communications. Their goal of building coalitions is inspiring, and their advocacy for climate sustainability as an economic and equity issue, along with an environmental issue, is totally compelling.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

For years I've been struck by the energy of Ceres campaigns to link investors with leaders in environmental research and advocacy. Add to that the one-of-a-kind Ceres collaborations with the United Nations: Investor Summits on Climate Risk creating a new global network of leaders in and out of government.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ceres has been an instrumental voice and advocate for the Paris Climate Agreement. They built support from the business and investor community to effectively change the debate about how taking action on climate will affect the global economy and brought the business voice to the forefront of the debate. In addition, Ceres is mobilizing business support for the U.S. Clean Power Plan and state-wide renewable energy standards that will help the U.S. meet it's obligations under the Paris Agreement. Ceres is the only nonprofit I'm aware of that is effectively building business and investor support to take global action on climate change -- and it's imperative that we have business on our side if we want to solve this global crisis. Cheers to Ceres!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ceres is phenomenal source of information and an advocate for some of the most important issues today facing business and our planet.

Comments ( 1 )

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seymour 10/28/2015

Thank you!

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I've long been impressed by the dedication and vision of the Ceres team -- but seeing it in action at its annual conference moved my admiration and enthusiasm to another level altogether.
The provocative and well-researched presentations and panels, along with the creativity and positive energy buzzing in the room, the depth of practical knowledge, and the vision and hard work to create coalitions across challenging divides--inspiring mix of vision and know-how!

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seymour 10/27/2015

So glad to hear that you were able to make the Conference—and of course, that it was impressive! We will continue to strategize about how to make it the best possible experience for all attendees. Thanks for taking the time to do this review.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

What could be more important than businesses and investors looking at the long term and making choices that conserve the resources? Every child knows you don’t kill the goose that lays the golden egg. Ceres is doing an outstanding job of helping financial leaders incorporate sustainability into their plans.

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seymour 10/26/2015

Thank you for this strong review.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Among non-profits Ceres has become the indispensable player in pushing environmental awareness among investors and businesses. No group has done more to move the issues of climate change and sustainability to the center of corporate consciousness.

Comments ( 1 )

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seymour 10/26/2015

We are grateful for your positive review, thank you.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I read the news. Results speak. Investment groups with trillions of $, coordinated by Ceres, seek carbon-friendly investments. Sometimes, CERES coordinates statements by dozens to hundreds of businesses, calling for action to slow climate change. Businesses such as large banks are changing their thinking about investing in fossil fuels, partly was a result of CERES.

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seymour 10/26/2015

I love the line "results speak." It takes years of behind-the-scenes work to get the point where Ceres' successes are news stories. This public recognition is important; thank you for helping to share it far and wide.

1 Joseph47

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

it's ok but it could be a lot more better and a whole lot easier. I mean it could be a whole lot easier if this website had a toolbar so we can search what we're looking for easily and quickly and it would be easier for us to just type something into the search tool bar and go right to where we're going

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seymour 10/26/2015

Hi Joseph - Thank you for taking the time to provide feedback. I'd like to learn more about what you mean by it could be better and easier so that we can improve. Is there a specific part of our programmatic work that you are referencing? Do you have thoughts on what could be changed? Please feel free to reach out to me directly - Barbara Seymour at seymout@ceres.og.

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General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Ceres has a series of Declarations, the original one signed by many of our nation's leading corporations stating the need to deal with climate change. About 1500 corporations have now signed, demonstrating that many in the business world endorse dealing with climate change issues. Very helpful!

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seymour 10/26/2015

We're glad to hear that the Ceres Climate Declaration is making a difference. Thank you.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

All companies and governments around the globe need to understand that adopting environmentally sustainable business practices is critical to their bottom line. Ceres is the leader in advocating for these ideals.

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seymour 10/26/2015

Thank you for taking the time to post this review.