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Our Impact

For 30 years, we’ve proudly partnered with nonprofits and charities, businesses, government and corporations to address our most pressing environmental challenges through transformational solutions.

Alberta Ecotrust logo in light blue on a transparent background.

We need to accelerate the transition to a better future for all.

In Alberta, population growth, urbanization, industrial development, and climate change, are leading to immense societal and environmental challenges.

We’ve all seen the effects of a rapidly changing climate, like floods, forest fires, and rising temperatures. Concerns about species-at-risk, the availability of clean water, and lowering greenhouse gas emissions demand our attention and support.

There’s no easy way to do this.

That's why we work together to conserve the biodiversity of Canada’s vast natural spaces and meet our national long-term goal of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

We've convened partners and facilitated projects for decades, to protect Alberta ecosystems. Looking ahead, we strive to create a portfolio of action across the province focused on achieving results in four integrated environmental impact areas.

Here are some recent highlights and stories of impact that we are leading or funding.

  1. 1

    Advancing a Healthy Environment

    We deliver and enable projects that protect nature, provide clean water, and act on climate change.

  2. 2

    Strengthening Community Leadership

    We build long-term, diverse, and transformative relationships across a wide range of stakeholders to build momentum and action for the environment.

  3. 3

    Accelerating Transition

    We seek to increase knowledge and awareness of ways we can transition faster to a sustainable future.

  4. 4

    Creating Community Benefits

    We deliver projects that create multiple community benefits, economic prosperity, and increase social equity.

Advancing a Healthy Environment

  • Tall skyscrapers against a blue sky.

    Accelerating Retrofits in Commercial Buildings

    In Calgary and Edmonton, the building stock accounts for 40 to 60 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. Deep energy retrofits of our current building stock need to be done quickly and at scale. Using innovative technology, we are helping commercial building owners reduce emissions, lower costs and, improve building performance.

  • Rocky Mountain Eastern Slopes Water Monitoring Collaborative

    The Rocky Mountian Eastern Slopes are an ecosystem at risk. By funding multiple organizations across Alberta developing the first-ever community-based water monitoring program for the Eastern Slopes, we are able to understand the water quality and better protect them. Partner organizations are collecting data from streams using the national CABIN sampling protocol and STREAM eDNA metabarcoding analysis with the long-term goal of preserving water quality in Alberta’s headwaters.

By the numbers

Projects funded through the Climate Innovation Grant Program in 2021 have the potential for major environmental impact

  • $930,710
    Funding disbursed
  • 18
    Climate Innovation Grant Program projects funded

Strengthening Community Leadership

  • Alberta Narratives Project

    The Alberta Narratives Project was a community-based initiative and new approach to public engagement research that builds skills to communication more effectively about climate. It aimed to uncover language and narratives that reflect the values and identities of Albertans, and to find ways of talking about our energy-climate future that build bridges to better community conversation. More than 75 individuals and organizations hosted 55 Narrative Workshops around Alberta, making this one of the largest public engagements of its kind. They spoke with a broad spectrum of people including farmers, oil sands workers, energy leaders, senior business people, youth, environmental activists, new Canadians and many more.

  • Better Housing Lab

    Intelligent Futures, with partners City of Calgary, Attainable Homes Calgary, Alberta Ecotrust and the University of Calgary, initiated a CMHC-funded Solutions Lab to answer the question: How can environmental performance be fundamentally integrated into the economic model of affordable housing projects in order to enhance the long-term livability and viability of projects? The CMHC Solutions Lab program is intended to be a catalyst for driving action and innovation in the affordable housing sector.

  • Calgary at a Crossroads Poll

    In August 2021, Alberta Ecotrust Foundation, the Calgary Climate Hub, Clean Energy Canada, and ZincTank, asked 1,000 Calgarians to share their opinions on Calgary’s economy, climate change and what they would like to see from municipal candidates heading into the 2021 civic election. Calgarians want investment in the economy to include environmental solutions. Almost 70 percent of Calgary’s citizens are concerned about climate change impacts and how this will impact their jobs, families, and the future of their communities. This report was shared with all of the candidates ahead of the election. See the top 5 findings in the full report.

  • Navigating the Future Survey

    Over 80 organizations completed the Navigating the Future survey in 2020 to help us determine the current capacity and needs of the environmental nonprofit sector. The results are helping Alberta Ecotrust adapt our programs to maximize impact and help the environmental charities and nonprofits we serve navigate their future. Navigating the Future is part of our ongoing research into Alberta’s environmental nonprofit sector. Get an inside look at the results that we presented at the 2020 Environmental Gathering.

By the numbers

For the Alberta Narratives Project

  • 75
    organizations
  • 55
    Narrative Workshops hosted
  • 482
    Albertans participating

Accelerating Transition

  • Digital Home Energy Labels

    We’re labelling every single-family home in Calgary and Edmonton with a digital energy score to give homeowners and buyers a deeper understanding of a home’s efficiency that can help inform the buying or selling process. This is the first large-scale energy labelling initiative for homes in Canada. This pilot makes Alberta a leader in home energy labelling by moving away from individual homeowners manually having to acquire a home energy audit, to automatically generating universal labels for every home in Calgary and Edmonton.

  • Exploring nature positive economic opportunities for southwest Alberta

    The foothills and mountains of southwestern Alberta are home to two of Alberta’s newest protected areas: Castle Wildland Provincial Park and Castle Provincial Park, or Castle parks. We are supporting the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y) to examine how nature-based recreation can be an economic driver by evaluating socio-economic factors before and after the Castle Parks’ creation and producing a comprehensive report for future action. Y2Y is engaging community leaders, catalysing discussions on diversifying local economies, while highlighting how nature conservation can help establish vibrant and sustainable communities.

Creating Community Benefits

  • Blackfoot Phenology for Farmers Cultivating Ecological Literacy

    Land managers can play a critical role in repairing ecosystems and mitigating climate change through on-farm, nature-based solutions. The core premise of Blackfoot Phenology is that the plants and animals around you are your “elders and teachers'' and that you can learn from them through observation and interaction. A collaboration between Ryan First Diver and Young Agrarians, the Blackfoot Phenology Course is providing farmers and food growers in Alberta with an Indigenous lens to expand their understanding the ecosystems and landscapes in which they are operating.

  • A river winding through a city during the fall.

    Wêyôtan: the Abundance Project 

    Local social enterprise, Newo Energy, is partnering with the Solar Power Cooperative of Edmonton to develop a local, made-in-Alberta investment culture that embodies the Cree principle of wêyôtan. They are working to create a replicable financing model for energy-efficiency retrofits across the province. This will create opportunities to support projects that stimulate our local economy, create jobs for under-served workers, and provide clean-energy accessibility for all. Building off previous support from the EcoCity Edmonton Grant Program, they are now utilizing a Climate Innovation grant to embark on a major pilot project to retrofit four buildings owned by Edmonton’s Bissell Centre, while providing training and employment to Bissell clients along the way.

By the numbers

EcoCity Edmonton Grant Program (2015-2020)

  • $1.2M
    disbursed
  • 40
    projects funded in the capital region
  • 81
    people with barriers to employment received job training from 2018 to 2020
  • 491 kW
    solar installed on community buildings
  • 68%
    of the EcoCity Edmonton grantee projects funded had a strong emphasis on justice and/or equity in the final 3 years of the program.

Together, we make a difference

We could not invest in protecting the environment without the help of our partners and donors who generously contribute to Alberta Ecotrust. Will you join the community that is genuinely helping people to improve and protect the enviroment we live and work in.

Make a difference

Annual Reports

For older reports, please contact us with your request.

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