Cisco commits $100m to climate crisis effort

Will fund climate projects and tech that powers sustainable and inclusive recovery
Image: Stockfresh

22 April 2021

The Cisco Foundation is committing $100 million to address the growing climate crisis.

Set to be funded by Cisco over ten years, the commitment will fund non-profit grants and impact investments that support bold climate solutions as well as community education and activation.  

According to a statement from Cisco, “there is a consensus among citizens around the world that action is needed to combat climate change. And yet many citizens feel disengaged either because they don’t think that one person can make a difference or because they are paralysed by the enormity of the crisis. This coupled with the fact that less than 2% of all philanthropic dollars are being spent to address the fight against climate change means that many bold climate solutions are not being developed due to a lack of action and investment. “




Cisco will work closely with the organisations receiving funding to measure and report on the impact of their programs. The Cisco Foundation’s approach is built on an existing, proven model of funding early-stage solutions with high-potential for sustainability and scalability.  

Determinations on non-profit partners will be based on their ability to impact, measure, and report outcomes such as:  

  • Reducing, capturing and/or sequestration of greenhouse gas and carbon emissions 
  • Increased energy efficiency 
  • Creation of, and increase in, access to green jobs 
  • Change in community behaviour that leads to carbon footprint reduction, community climate resilience, and creation of local/regional vision of the shared climate future that we all want   

“From a Cisco perspective, we know that in order for us to live up to our purpose – to power an inclusive future for all – we must combat the rising inequality that stems from climate change. We also know that our technology, our business practices, and our partnerships are crucial to this effort. A challenge as big as climate change will take all of us. That’s why we’re so proud to fund bold solutions and find ways for communities to engage to affect change,” said Fran Katsoudas, chief people, policy & purpose officer, Cisco. “We will continue to work towards reducing our carbon footprint while creating innovative products and business models that drive forward sustainable and climate conscious solutions.” 

Cisco said it is committed to building a sustainable future by reducing emissions, reducing waste, building more efficient products, and by setting ambitious, but achievable goals.  

“Cisco has long been a leader in embedding environmental, social and corporate responsibility into our business practices and products. We’re proud to further our commitment by taking this next step to help address the climate crisis,” said Scott Herren, chief financial officer, Cisco. “This is a moment where we can, should, and will put dollars towards supporting and reinforcing our company’s purpose.”  

Peter Tavernise, executive director of the Cisco Foundation, added: “Today’s commitment will build on the Foundation’s approach to funding that drives meaningful impact by supporting early-stage, technology-based solutions with the potential to scale and be sustainable.”

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