Jewish Climate Leadership Coalition

And who knows, you may have been chosen for just such a time as this. -Esther 4:14

The Jewish Climate Leadership Coalition is a network of Jewish community organizations who recognize the existential threat and moral urgency of climate change and commit to take action.   

The potential power of our community’s collective action is immense. By working together, the impacts of individual organizations will be amplified, rippling throughout networks, neighborhoods, and beyond. 

Coalition Overview

The Coalition is a network of Jewish community organizations who develop Climate Action Plans. Climate Action Plans outline the strategic priorities of your organization’s climate work by detailing actions taken to-date and setting goals for both reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and mobilizing your broader networks around climate action in the coming year.   

When organizations join the Coalition, their chief executive or rabbi signs the Coalition Founding Statement and designates a staff liaison to coordinate their organization’s climate action work.   

Adamah provides the structure, guidance, and resources to support your organization in creating and implementing your climate action plan.  

Jewish organizations everywhere are invited to join the Coalition. There is no cost to membership. 

Coalition Members 

In spring 2022, twenty major umbrella Jewish organizations joined the Coalition as founding partners, demonstrating broad consensus that the Jewish community is ready and capable of taking collective climate action. These organizations are working to mobilize and support their networks in taking meaningful action around climate.    

In fall 2022, the Coalition opened to all Jewish community organizations. Since then, more than 180 synagogues, summer camps, JCCs, Federations, Hillels, and others have joined. See the full list of Coalition members who have already committed to climate action. 

Below are the 2023 Climate Action Plans of the founding partners.    

Climate Action 

For Coalition members, Adamah is developing resources and partnerships to support two focused areas of climate work: achieving organizational net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and engaging the broader Jewish community in climate action.   

Getting to Zero Emissions 

We have identified four steps, through which an organization can ultimately achieve net-zero GHG emissions. They are: 

  • Source Clean Electricity: Purchase clean electricity from the grid, or produce your own with solar. 
  • Go Electric: Make a plan that documents all non-electric appliances (e.g. gas furnaces and boilers) and when they will expire. Start planning now for how to replace them with electric versions. 
  • Reduce Emissions: Make energy efficiency retrofits; adjust food and travel practices; and manage natural resources to sequester carbon through nature-based solutions. 
  • Offset Emissions That Can’t Be Reduced: Some GHG emissions are unavoidable. For those that cannot be eliminated, purchase vetted carbon offsets. 

Expanding Impact 

The steps above can save money, reduce reliance on fossil fuels, and make our organizations more sustainable and resilient. When we pair reducing our emissions with activities that amplify our climate action work beyond the walls of our institutions, our impact can be even greater.   

  • Education and Nature Connection: Engage communities through programs, celebrations, and learning moments that ground us in our connection with Earth and inspire collective action.  
  • Advocacy: Advocate for climate-smart policies. 
  • Finance: Choose organizational investments, endowments, and banking relationships based on their climate impacts.  

Program Structure 

All members of the Coalition commit to creating and implementing a Climate Action Plan, a strategic plan for an organization’s climate work. Climate Action Plans detail climate actions taken to-date, and set goals for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the coming year. Climate Action Plans will be shared annually around Tu BiShvat (January/February).    

There are no minimum requirements for Climate Action Plans.   

Adamah will support Coalition members in the following ways, so you can confidently commit to climate action: 

Learning Sessions 

Each month, Adamah will host learning sessions designed to support your climate action planning. Topics will include:  

  • Creating and Buying Clean Electricity 
  • Carbon Offsets: What are they? How to get them? Do they work? 
  • Money Matters: Financing, incentives, and cost-savings 
  • Food and Food Waste: Eating your way to reduced GHG emissions  
  • Youth in Action: Working with Gen-Z for institutional change

Communities of Practice  

From synagogues to Federations, day schools to Hillels, youth movements to rabbinical schools, Adamah will connect each Coalition member with a community of practice, which will meet quarterly. Communities of practice, facilitated in partnership with the founding partners, will afford Coalition members opportunities to network, inspire, learn, and share best practices with colleagues in similar organizations.  

Office Hours and Consultation  

Each week, a Adamah staff person will hold office hours and be available for Coalition members to drop in and ask questions or seek support. Different Adamah staff members bring specific areas of climate expertise, and will be listed on the office hours schedule.  

Additionally, all Coalition members can schedule an annual one-on-one consultation with an Adamah staff person for customized support in developing their Climate Action Plan.    

Climate Action Fund  

Coalition members are eligible to apply for interest-free loans and matching grants through Adamah to support your efforts to get to zero GHG emissions. Interest-free loans of up to $100,000, with a five year pay-back, and matching grants of up to $10,000 are available. There are also regionally specific opportunities: a Baltimore Green Loan Fund and a matching grant fund for Coalition member organizations based in Orange County, CA. Upcoming deadlines are in May and June 2023. Additional loan and grant opportunities will be added as funds are available. Join the Coalition to be eligible to pursue these funding opportunities!

Info Sessions 

If you’re ready, go ahead and join the Jewish Climate Leadership Coalition! But if you’d like to learn more, please join us at one of our upcoming 45-minute Coalition info sessions. We’ll briefly reflect on why taking climate action is critical in the Jewish community, cover what the Coalition is, explain what Adamah means by “climate action,” and review the support and benefits available to Coalition members. Click here for dates and to register.

If the upcoming dates don’t work or you just can’t wait, you can watch a recording of a past info session and/or review the slides shared during the presentation. 

FAQs 

Who can join the Coalition?
This sounds great! When do we start?
Can I join at any time? When is my Climate Action Plan due?
Why are Climate Action Plans due at Tu BiShvat?
How long is membership in the Coalition?
What is the anticipated time commitment for Coalition members?
Is there a cost to join the Jewish Climate Leadership Coalition?
Will there be funding available to support climate action work?
How can my organization set itself up for success?
My organization does not own (or even use!) a building. Can we still join the Coalition?
Ahh! I am excited and overwhelmed; inspired and daunted! Can you help me?
Wait! I still have questions!   

Please contact us a coalition@adamah.org. We look forward to connecting with you! 

Coalition Member Resources

Members of the Jewish Climate Leadership Coalition commit to developing, implementing, evaluating, and sharing an organizational Climate Action Plan each year. We are here to help you and to make that process as simple and meaningful as possible.