WCS Receives Rockefeller Foundation Cultural Innovation Grant

Grant will support efforts by New Yorkers to tackle climate change

NEW YORK (August 15, 2011) -- The Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) announced today that it has received a Cultural Innovation Fund grant from the Rockefeller Foundation to work on climate change issues directly related to Manhattan.

The grant will support WCS efforts to build an online forum that allows the public to develop and share their own preferred climate-resilient designs for Manhattan.

The new “Mannahatta 2409” Website will enable New Yorkers to see how lifestyle changes can reduce their carbon footprint, reduce water use, and bolster biodiversity block by block, neighborhood by neighborhood. WCS has already developed the Mannahatta Project showing Manhattan 400 years ago; this work is now being extended across all five boroughs through the Welikia Project.

“The Wildlife Conservation Society is grateful to the Rockefeller Foundation for supporting an initiative important to all New Yorkers,” said Wildlife Conservation Society President Steve Sanderson. "New York City will face real climate change challenges in the coming years. As New York’s own global conservation organization, WCS can use this support to help public officials and all New Yorkers address and plan for a sustainable future.

This WCS effort dovetails with other initiatives such as PlaNYC and the C40 Cities Initiative. These projects enable New York and other cities to proactively address environmental concerns. WCS works to understand how climate change affects landscapes and seascapes around the world.

The NYC Cultural Innovation Fund supports creativity and the arts, with an emphasis on innovation. The Foundation awards two-year grants, ranging from $50,000 to $250,000, for groundbreaking work that enriches the city’s cultural life and strengthens the role that creativity will play in the future of New York.

Stephen Sautner: (1-718-220-3682; ssautner@wcs.org)
John Delaney: (1-718-220-3275; jdelaney@wcs.org)

The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide.  We do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes toward nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth.

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