Two Meta Sustainability Grant and Scholarship Recipients Share Impression

Climate change is too big a challenge for us to solve alone. At Meta, we know that in order to impact climate change on a global scale, we must collectively achieve the 1.5°C target set out in the Paris Agreement and meet our own corporate goals to achieve net-zero emissions across our value chain and become water positive By 2030, we need to attract some of the boldest and brightest people working across all industries to take action and create solutions for a more sustainable world.

That’s why we offer grants and scholarships to support sustainability innovations around the world. Here we share updates from two recent grant recipients to see how the contributions are helping to fuel growth and impact for every organization – and its community.

Oregon’s Crooked River Watershed Council and Deschutes Land Trust

In 2022, Meta awarded a $75,000 sustainability grant to Crooked River Watershed Council and Deschutes Land Trust to support two community-driven conservation projects, including restoring local habitats and securing broader community access in the Ochoco Preserve in Prineville, Oregon, and the construction of a passage for salmon and steelhead in Ochoco Creek.

Since then, the Ochoco Nature Preserve project has excavated soil, replaced a bridge, and buried large forest, among other things, to improve habitat complexity and structure. And as soon as the weather warms up, the planting of trees, shrubs and grass will begin. (This effort builds on previous work along McKay Creek in the Ochoco Preserve aimed at improving floodplain connectivity, restoring bank conditions, and improving channel complexity.)

Restoring local habitats and ensuring broader community access at the Ochoco Preserve in Prineville, Oregon.

The second phase of the Ochoco Nature Preserve project is scheduled for completion in spring 2024. The largest and most costly phase of the restoration will create nearly 40 acres of new floodplains, including nearly a mile of the new Ochoco Creek baseflow channel, approximately 0.6 mile of the new Crooked River baseflow channel and approximately 5 acres of new wetlands. More than 50 acres of upland will be processed from excavated soil and all disturbed areas will be seeded and planted with over 100,000 native zonal plants.

When completed, the new Ochoco Preserve floodplains and wetlands will provide publicly accessible footbridges, trails and information points while helping to reduce the risk of flood damage to downstream landowners and improve water quality.

The Center for Community Involvement, Environmental Justice, and Health of the University of Maryland School of Public Health

Environmental justice requires ensuring the representation, inclusion and protection of the rights of those most affected by the impacts of climate change, which means that climate solutions must promote justice, ensure access to basic resources and guarantee that all people live within can learn and work healthy and clean environment.

In 2022, Meta donated $1.75 million to the University of Maryland School of Public Health’s Center for Community Engagement, Environmental Justice and Health (CEEJH) to advance this vision.

Founded in 2011 by Dr. Sacoby Wilson, professor in the Maryland Institute for Applied Environmental Health and Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Maryland, CEEJH’s work includes developing and engaging in partnerships with community-based organizations, environmental groups, public health practitioners and policymakers to address local contamination reduce, improve environmental quality and improve community health and sustainability.

Meta’s grant supports a new paid internship program, as well as hiring of new staff and support for the University of Maryland’s annual Symposium on Environmental Justice and Health Inequalities, which brings together community organizers, policymakers and environmental health professionals using innovative political, legal and public health tools to address pressing environmental justice issues and help communities stand up for themselves.

During the summer, 19 students took part in a 10-week virtual internship program led by Dr. Wilson part. Her work has focused on air quality and water security, among others, as well as capacity-building workshops on topics ranging from mapping geographic information systems to statistical analysis. The program will resume this summer.

Learn more about the University of Maryland School of Public Health’s Center for Community Engagement, Environmental Justice and Health’s Environmental Justice Internship here.

Sustainability Report 2021

We envision a just and equitable transition to a zero-carbon economy and work to scale inclusive solutions that help create a healthier planet for all.

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