Salal’s Board has established the following priorities for the current year. Salal does accept unsolicited proposal for projects that address our priorities, they are seldom funded. Most of our resources are directed to funding our own projects aligned with our annual priorities. That said, we like bold ideas, so if you have a bold, game changing project that addresses these priorities by all means submit it on our online submission form.
Canadian democracy is in crisis. The proliferation of ideologically-driven digital communications, the downsizing of investigative journalism, and the increasingly hyper-partisanship of our political process are alienating Canadians. We support research and testing of innovative strategies to promote transparency, citizen engagement, and democracy.
Testing innovative engagement methods to scale unprecedented mobilization
Civilization as we know it is facing a number of existential crises. Loss of species and topsoil threaten our biome, acidification and rising temperatures damage our oceans, and unless we limit global warming to less than 1.5 C (2.7 F), many parts of the world will become uninhabitable. Addressing these challenges requires the mobilization of human action at a pace and scale unprecedented in history. We support testing new approaches to identify, recruit and mobilize supporters that can overcome psychological, economic, social and cultural barriers to action.
Intact forests provide important ecological and cultural benefits such as carbon storage, nutrient cycling, water and air purification, and maintenance of wildlife habitat. We seek innovative methods to engage stakeholders to keep these forests intact.
Sustainable Marine Ecosystem and Fisheries
The world’s oceans are the lungs of the world. They are the major source of oxygen and biodiversity, instrumental in the capture and storage of carbon dioxide as well as providing food, medicines, and livelihoods. Yet they face major human-made threats, including acidification, plastic pollution, and exploitative terrestrial and marine fisheries. To improve the health of the world’s oceans and aquatic and riparian biodiversity, we support research and education promoting best practices from around the world for sustainable fisheries, protecting species, stopping pollution and marine ecosystem management.
Diversifying Canada’s Fibre Basket
Canada’s forest ecosystems are being liquidated to produce pulp and commodity products for various industries. These environmental impacts can be limited by diversifying the fibre basket used in manufacturing. We are seeking new processes to shift away from using Canadian forests for pulp, single-use products, and packaging.
Greening Canadian Industries
Canadian industries have large carbon, toxic and biodiversity footprints that threaten endangered Canadian forests, fragile terrestrial and marine ecosystems, and water supplies. We are seeking innovative methods for large industries to shift their business practices to lessen these impacts, particularly in relation to the production, transport, and use of toxic substances.
Strengthening Indigenous Resilience
Indigenous peoples have safeguarded the land, air, water in their territories for thousands of years. Against huge odds, Indigenous nations are leading the way in stopping toxic pollution of water and protecting the health of people and the environment. We support efforts to build indigenous resilience to defend their land, air, and water in the face of growing threats.
Connecting Youth with Nature
Human health and healthy environments are interdependent. Exposure to nature not only makes people feel better emotionally but also improves physical well-being. We support developing youth environmental leadership because research shows connecting young people to nature and their local environment not only improves life-long health; it also gives them the confidence and resilience to become environmental leaders needed to protect their future.
Forest and Climate
Climate change is having devastating impacts on forests, forest-dependent communities, and biodiversity. Unprecedented wildfires, insects and disease and boom and bust policies are destroying forests and communities. We seek innovative ways to lessen these impacts and help communities prepare for and mitigate the coming changes.
Under current policies, it is often cheaper for businesses to overharvest, waste resources, dump toxic pollution, exploit communities and indigenous people than it is for them to operate equitably and sustainably. If we are to mitigate global warming, the biodiversity crisis and our ever-expanding footprint, this must change. We support efforts to realign monetary and policy incentives to make “polluters pay”, discourage waste and pollution, promote energy and resource efficiency, and reduce inequality.
Telling Powerful Stories
All the world’s major problems are human-made, transforming how people relate to nature, their communities and each other is the only way to address them. Research has shown that the best way to change perception and behaviour is through powerful heartfelt stories. Too often groups appeal primarily to people’s heads; to create the world we dream of we need to better connect with people’s hearts. We support innovative techniques using a variety of mediums to tell powerful stories including methods that integrate the latest research (from neuroscience, behavioural economics, linguistics, psychology, and data science) on how people actually process information and make important decisions.
Developing Resilient Communities
Canada’s water, land, and water are threatened by resource exploitation, toxic pollution and the exclusion of impacted communities. We support efforts to mitigate these damages, improve resiliency and foster prosperity through community renewable energy, land use, and indigenous territorial planning.
Canadian NGOs are working hard to resolve audacious challenges, often with too few resources and support. Those working in frontline communities particularly those facing impacts from the extraction, storage, transport and use of toxic substances are particularly under-resourced. We seek innovative ways to build the capacity of selected NGOs to overcome challenges and implement best practices to defend our air, land, and water more cheaply, with higher impact and at a larger scale.
Promoting Movement Diversity
To be strong and effective Canada’s environmental movement must represent the full diversity of the Canadian population. We support efforts that increase participation and address the environmental concerns of underrepresented populations.
Stopping Toxic Transports
The struggle between clean, regional energy solutions and the export of largely unrefined resources are quickly becoming the most polarizing issue of our times. We support efforts to stop the creation of new infrastructure for toxic exports while promoting new regional clean energy solutions.