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Our Impact

Since its inception in 1996, Colcom Foundation has funded many of the leading environmental and conservation organizations, helping deliver tangible results and improve our environment.

Colcom’s founder, Cordelia S. May, was a dedicated environmentalist who leveraged her personal fortune to fund environmental conservation and initiatives for decades before establishing Colcom Foundation. Environmental sustainability was natural for Mrs. May. She understood the impact human population growth has on the environment. To her, the population environment connection was common sense.

While Colcom Foundation has accomplished much over the last quarter century, we’re just getting started. Our environment and planet have never been more threatened. Our mission never more important. That is why every member of the Colcom team is dedicated to delivering more impact, more environmental benefits with every grant. A sustainable environment means a sustainable future for the next generation.

2,790 Miles of Rivers Restored, Protected. And Miles to Go.

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, where the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers meet to form the Ohio River, Colcom Foundation has a special appreciation for America’s waterways. Clean rivers are an essential part of a sustainable environment and our community. Not only do rivers supply us with water for drinking, growing crops, manufacturing, and energy, they’re also an integral part of the ecosystem, providing fresh water and natural habitats for plants, fish, birds, and other wildlife. Rivers also act as drainage channels to the earth’s land surface, replenishing constantly evaporating seawater. Healthy rivers reduce human and environmental health risk. That is why it is so important to make them pristine. Colcom will continue funding organizations that protect and restore our rivers.

48,914 Acres of Land Improved. Because It’s Our Common Ground.

Excess nutrients and fertilizers from agricultural operations and sediment from eroding streambanks threaten our waterways. That’s why Colcom supports the development and implementation of nutrient management plans to mitigate the damage. So far, nearly 50,000 acres of land have been improved as a result.

Over 4 Million Trees Planted. And We’re Just Getting Started.

Since Colcom’s inception, saving America’s forests has been one of the foundation’s top priorities. Forests are vital to the country’s environmental sustainability as well as the economic interests of over eight million Americans. That is why we are proud to have helped protect over one million acres of forests and plant over four million trees. Working together to save America’s forests will allow us all to breathe a little easier.

Endangered Species Protected.

According to scientific studies, habitat loss is one of the primary reasons so many species are now endangered. As America’s population expands, forests are razed to make way for new developments and roads. Habitats are wiped out. Over 2,232,765 acres of forests and farmland are lost each year. That is why Colcom has helped protect over one million acres of forests. When we protect forests, we are protecting a lot more than trees.