For the past 20 years, Palladium has committed 1.5 per cent of its profit before tax to the company’s global giving platform, Let’s Make it Possible. Through this platform and in partnership with the Kyeema Foundation, Palladium funds humanitarian relief efforts, supports community projects nominated by employees, and runs an annual Challenge Fund to tackle a major global problem.
The climate crisis and, more recently, the COVID-19 pandemic have brought the value of nature into sharp focus. Despite calls from climate experts and scientists around the world, natural assets are being degraded at a rapid pace and the implications for communities around the world are troubling, to say the least.
Vibrant natural ecosystems can mitigate the impact of natural disasters, help regulate climate change and limit the spread of disease. Nature is clearly a valuable asset, yet due to systemic market failures underpinning global economies, destroying nature is a more economically valued pursuit than protecting it.
According to scientists, there’s still time to mitigate and adapt to address the rapidly worsening climate crisis, but it will require innovative solutions, partnerships across sectors, and a shift in how investors value natural assets.
The solutions are out there – they just need to be found and funded. In that spirit, Palladium has announced the launch of the 2021 Palladium Challenge Fund with the theme ‘Valuing Nature’.
CEO Christopher Hirst notes that this year’s focus on nature directly corresponds with much of the work Palladium is leading around the world.
“Palladium has been at the forefront of this movement for decades, having built innovative business models that reflect the true value of nature’s ecosystems services, structured investments to support initiatives that protect or restore nature, and worked with companies and institutions around the world to establish and measure their ESG frameworks.”
Palladium is calling for proposals from organisations with innovative and scalable solutions to the climate crisis by placing real value on nature and natural assets, and that answer the question: ‘How can you make protecting nature more attractive as an economic pursuit than destroying it?’
“We are optimistic that the right conditions have now lined up for new investment opportunities to protect nature, and that interesting cross-sector partnerships will emerge in the near future to find the best means to invest in and value nature,” Hirst adds.
The Challenge Fund
The Palladium Challenge Fund brings in ideas from across the company’s network and partnerships in over 90 countries to source innovative responses to global challenges. Using a challenge fund model, Palladium funds organisations and initiatives that:
• Pilot new technologies and innovative approaches
• De-risk start-up ventures
• Deliver outcomes from innovative financial mechanisms
• Support the convening of innovation challenges
Sinead Magill, Palladium Managing Partner, explains that the team is looking for both entrepreneurs and organisations creatively solving for these massive global issues and operating against a clear ‘problem statement’. “We are keen to hear from any organisation that demonstrates innovation and scalability in addressing climate change through the lens of valuing nature as an asset.”
The funds will be administered to grant winners by Kyeema, which Palladium has supported and partnered with since 2003. Winning projects will benefit both from Kyeema’s established track record as a trusted NGO and Palladium’s global footprint and resources.
“The future demands new thinking, new approaches, and new solutions, and we’re excited to see the projects and partnerships that come from this call for proposals and the difference that we can make together,” Magill says.
Applications will be accepted until 31 May 2021. To learn more and apply, visit the Let’s Make it Possible website or contact LMIP@kyeemafoundation.org.