In 2015, The Tides Foundation, based in San Francisco, continued to forward money to a team of environmental and First Nations organizations involved in its anti-pipeline Tar Sands Campaign against Alberta oil. By my analysis of the tax return filed by Tides for 2015, Tides paid at least CAN $4 million to more than 50 organizations involved in this campaign in the U.S. and Canada.
In the U.S., at least ten organizations were funded, as follow:
- Forest Ethics: $76,579
- Natural Resources Defence Council: $50,000
- National Wildlife Federation: $50,000
- Bold Nebraska: $50,000
- 350.org: $25,000 plus $25,000 for 350.org in Minnesota
- Sierra Club: $25,000
- Honor The Earth: $20,000
- Turtle Island: $20,000
- Riverkeeper: $15,000 plus $60,000 for a "grassroots campaign to stop dangerous crude oil shipments"
In addition to the above, Tides paid $75,000 ($60,000 & $15,000) to the New Venture Fund for "fossil fuel reduction." As we know from other documents, that is another name for The Tar Sands Campaign. SumOfUs got $14,550 for a similar purpose.
In Canada, Tides funded:
- Dogwood Initiative: $187,425
- Greenpeace Canada: $180,000
- Environmental Defence: $150,000
- The Pembina Institute: $125,000
- Forest Ethics Advocacy: $100,000. Tides also paid ForestEthics $20,000 for its Canadian program.
- Equiterre: $100,000
- Ecojustice: $85,000 & US$16,000 for "2015 Fossil Fuel Legal Strategy Work"
- 350.org in Canada: $50,000.
- Sierra Club of B.C.: $30,000 & US$35,000
- West Coast Environmental Law Research Foundation: $54,550
- Ecology Ottawa: $37,500
- Council of Canadians: $36,000
- Tanker Free B.C.: $35,000
- Canadian Youth Action Coalition (via the Polaris Institute): $25,000 & US$7,000
- Living Oceans Society: $25,000
- T. Buck Suzuki Foundation: $15,000
- Georgia Strait Alliance: $15,000
- Pipe Up Association: $15,000
- 350.org Toronto: $10,000
Tides also funded several First Nations organizations:
- Tsleil-waututh First Nation: $75,000
- Idle No More: $75,000
- Beaver Lake Cree: $50,000
- Keepers of the Athabasca: $40,000
- Saik'Uz First Nation: $40,000 for the Yinka Dene Alliance
- Great Bear Initiative Society: $30,000
- RAVEN: $20,000 for legal action against Enbridge, funded by the Pull Together campaign
- Gitga'at First Nation: $15,000
Tides also funded several organizations in eastern Canada that have not been listed in previous years:
- Quebec Environmental Law Center: $50,000
- Conversations for Responsible Resource Development (CRED): $35,000
- Conservation Council of New Brunswick: $30,000
- Manitoba Energy Justice Coalition: $25,000
- Transition Initiative Kenora: $25,000
- Climate Action Network Canada: $10,000
- Association Quebecoise de Lutte Contra la Pollution Atmospherique: $10,000
Some of the above organizations may have been funded in 2014, however, regarding the Canadian groups, that was impossible to know from Tides' tax return for that year. That's because in 2014 Tides discontinued the practice of providing the names of its international grantees. To its credit, Tides resumed this practice for 2015.
Some of the organizations that are funded as part of its anti-pipeline campaign also received funds for general or related purposes. For example:
- Global Greengrants got $1.3 million ($1,250,000 & $50,000). That included $500,000 to fund "grassroots indigenous people's organizing." Whether any of that went towards the anti-pipeline campaign is not clear.
- Ecojustice received $510,000 ($350,000, $100,000 & $60,000). Whether any of that went into the anti-pipeline campaign is, again, unclear.
- SumOfUs: $37,200 for general support ($24,200 & $13,000) plus $44,4966 for efforts to defeat the Trans Pacific Partnership and the Trans-Atlantic Trade & Investment Partnership.
- Earthworks got $50,000 for its Oil & Gas Accountability Project
- Friends of the Earth got $17,847 for general support