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Audi Environmental Foundation supports US coastal restoration
- Audi Environmental Foundation creates “Restore our Bays” initiative and awards grants to Save The Bay and The Chesapeake Bay Foundation
- Philanthropic funds used towards increasing climate resilience of critical wetlands and restore biodiversity
Audi Environmental Foundation (AEF) has awarded grants to two U.S. non-profits – Save The Bay and The Chesapeake Bay Foundation – providing $100,000 to each organization alongside Audi of America employee volunteer opportunities. The joint initiative is launching as “Restore our Bays”. Audi of America partnered with AEF to select the non-profit groups, recognizing the importance of its work to improve climate resilience along each coast. Water conservation and ecosystem protection are priorities for Audi, as we continue to work toward a global commitment to cut water consumption per vehicle produced in half by 2035 compared to 2019 levels*.
Established in 2009 by AUDI AG, the Audi Environmental Foundation was formed to create new paths for sustainable action, promoting technological innovation as applied to key environmental challenges. The foundation sponsors projects across the globe that fuse innovation, technology and measures to work towards meeting vital environmental outcomes while building awareness and fostering education. Innovations that improve water quality and conservation are key priorities of the Foundation. Current global initiatives include those that help remove garbage from rivers or filter micro plastics from urban surface water.
“The focus of our foundation is to provide a testbed for innovative ideas. We want to leverage technology to protect the environment and explore possibilities that perhaps no one has thought of before,” said Audi Environmental Foundation Director Rüdiger Recknagel. “With ‘Restore our Bays’, we are excited to support two leading organizations in the U.S. as part of our continued contribution to environmental protection, particularly where it intersects with the topic of water, an increasingly critical global issue.”
Audi of America employees will donate their time with both organizations to participate in shoreline restoration events. The first one was hosted by Save The Bay on March 6, in the San Francisco Bay area. Additional volunteer opportunities will take place in Chesapeake Bay this spring.
“The availability of clean water is becoming increasingly critical and we have a responsibility to help tackle this issue,” said Spencer Reeder, Director, Government Affairs & Sustainability. “At Audi, we know it’s going to take broad collaboration to achieve the planet’s climate goals and we are proud to support organizations whose values are closely aligned to ours.”
The Chesapeake Bay Foundation is devoted to the restoration and protection of the Chesapeake Bay, conducting hands-on restoration, educational programs and policy advocacy.
“To achieve our goal of saving the Chesapeake Bay, a job made more difficult as a result of climate change, we will need innovative new partnerships. We are excited to partner with the Audi Environmental Foundation and Audi of America to expand our work to build resilient shorelines and add billions of new oysters to our waterways,” said Katharene Poston Snavely, Chief Development Officer at Chesapeake Bay Foundation. “Working together with all our partners we will achieve cleaner water and a thriving Chesapeake Bay for the benefit of everyone living in the watershed.”
For over 60 years, Save The Bay has worked to protect and restore San Francisco Bay for people and wildlife through political advocacy, wetland restoration, and education.
“We are grateful to receive funding from the Audi Environmental Foundation to protect and restore vital wetland habitat around San Francisco Bay,” said Jessie Olson, Habitat Restoration Director at Save The Bay. “Climate change presents an urgent threat, and this support will help us continue to build innovative restoration solutions toward a more resilient future for people and wildlife.”
More information on the Audi Environmental Foundation can be found here.
* This will be calculated on a per-vehicle basis, relative to water consumption in the year 2019. The methodology employs an “ecologically weighted” value of water consumption to allow a comparison of absolute water requirements at Audi locations worldwide, taking into account locally prevailing water stress factors and the use of rainwater. In this way, savings can be prioritized where the availability of water is particularly scarce. For more information see: Audi plans to cut water consumption in production in half by 2035