The Earth Fund commits a total of $7.9 million to the Atlanta area to enhance communities with more parks, trees, and community gardens
The Partnership for Southern Equity today announced that we received a $3.5 million grant from the Bezos Earth Fund to support urban greening in the Atlanta region. The Greening America’s Cities initiative is a new $400 million commitment to create more equitable access to urban greening in underserved U.S. communities.
“This generous grant from the Bezos Earth Fund will support our work to build a strong equity ecosystem, especially in marginalized communities where the negative effects of climate change have had the greatest impact,” said Nathaniel Smith, founder and Chief Equity Officer of the Partnership for Southern Equity. “More than ever, the people who are closest to the problem are also closest to the solution. The Just Green Hub will provide a framework for both advocacy and action to move the needle in climate justice toward a future where prosperity can be shared by all.”
There is clear evidence that “greening” U.S. cities with more — and better — parks, trees, and community gardens can improve physical and mental health, increase local resilience to climate impacts like extreme heat and reduce energy consumption. Health benefits come from improved air quality, more physical activity, reduced heat, the stress reduction effect of green spaces, and the opportunities green spaces create for social interaction.
“Green spaces are critical for people and the planet. The Bezos Earth Fund is proud to partner with local communities and government to expand urban green spaces,” said Andrew Steer, President & CEO of the Bezos Earth Fund. “In partnership, this new initiative will support historically underserved communities, supporting their health and well-being.”
Historic systems of segregation, exclusion, and land dispossession have led to many communities living in nature-deprived areas. Consequently, these communities often do not benefit from nature’s benefits, like air and water purification, climate mitigation, or biodiversity.
The Earth Fund’s Greening America’s Cities initiative starts with community projects in five cities: Albuquerque, Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Wilmington, Delaware. It will extend through 2030 and expand to new communities, building on its earlier $300 million in funding to climate and environmental justice groups in the U.S. For more information, visit: www.BezosEarthFund.org/.
About The Partnership for Southern Equity
Based in Atlanta, PSE is a nonprofit organization that advances policies and institutional actions that promote racial equity and shared prosperity for all in the growth of metropolitan Atlanta and the American South. Through forums, research, and organizing efforts, PSE brings together the regional community to lift up and encourage just, sustainable, and civic practices for balanced growth and opportunity. www.psequity.org