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January 25, 2006

Alcoa Announces Investment of $8.6 Million in Conservation and Sustainability Research; Knowledge and Learnings from Research To Be Given Away To Spur Best Practices Worldwide

DAVOS, Switzerland and PITTSBURGH--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jan. 25, 2006--

  Initial Studies Range From Sustainable Energy Technology Development in China; New Marine Protected Area for Blue Whales in Chile; and Community-Based Natural Resource Management in Zambia  

Alcoa (NYSE:AA) today announced that the Alcoa Foundation will donate $8.6 million dollars to create the Alcoa Conservation and Sustainability Fellowship (CSF) program. The program will fund the study of global conservation and sustainability research by 30 Academic and 60 non-governmental organization (NGO) fellows from around the world over the next six years. The research will then be given away to all companies and NGO's worldwide in an effort to spur better sustainable development practices globally.

Participants in the Alcoa Conservation and Sustainability Foundation program include the most recognized names in the world of academic research and environmental stewardship. NGO partners include: the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, and Tecnologico de Monterrey in Mexico.

Academic partners who will participate in the fellowship program include:

-- Curtin University of Technology - Perth, Australia

-- London School of Economics and Political Science -- London, UK

-- The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor -- Michigan, United States

-- University of Sao Paulo -- Sao Paulo, Brazil

-- Tsinghua University - Beijing, China.

"As a company we are committed to sustainable development. The practice of sustainability is part of our inner fiber and touches everything we do," said Alain Belda, Alcoa Chairman and CEO. "In turn, we want to make the Alcoa Foundation's Conservation and Sustainability Fellowship Program the most prestigious program for environmental leaders worldwide. This innovative and interdisciplinary approach will bring together the best minds in academics, NGOs and business communities in order to achieve unprecedented advancements through research and collaboration across disciplines.

"Some of the best minds in the world of sustainability will have their research funded, and then we will take their learnings and share this knowledge with anyone interested -- at no charge. It is vital for our children, our children's children, and for generations to come that the practices and learnings generated through this program help foster best practices globally. It's the right thing to do."

Examples of the initial studies that will be conducted in the first phase of the program include:

-- Analysis of rural industrialization policies and examination of civil society strategies for sustainable energy technology development in China; and conservation and sustainable development in the Liangshan Mountain region near Sichuan, China.

-- Study of the sustainable use of papyrus swamps at Lake Victoria, Kenya.

-- Exploration of a new marine protected area for Blue whales in Southern Chile.

-- Institution building and economic micro-projects for promoting sustainability in community-based natural resource management in Zambia.

-- Quantitative evaluation of the exploitation and regeneration status of mangrove stands in Southwestern Cameroon.

-- Creation of a map system detailing the Ecoregions of Peninsular California.

-- Analysis of ecosystems and conservation and management of the Atlantic Rainforest; and the integration of modern analytical methodologies into the development of sustainable technologies in Brazil.

Additional topics will be studied and shared over the course of the next six years.

"The overall goal of the program is to support the Fellows as they work to further evolve and develop the field of sustainability," said Alcoa Foundation President, Meg McDonald. "Our expectations are that the advancements and innovations that come out of the program will lead to the creation of a global interdisciplinary network that will help to advance the field of sustainability and lead to the adoption of best practice polices around the area of conservation."

Alcoa has always maintained a leadership position in the area of sustainability and was named one of the top most sustainable corporations in the world at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. The investment in the Fellowship program is another example of the company's commitment to sustainable development by incorporating social responsibility, economic success, and environmental excellence into its decision-making process.

More information can be found at

About Alcoa

Alcoa is the world's leading producer and manager of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum and alumina facilities, and is active in all major aspects of the industry. Alcoa serves the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation and industrial markets, bringing design, engineering, production and other capabilities of Alcoa's businesses to customers. In addition to aluminum products and components, Alcoa also markets consumer brands including Reynolds Wrap(R) foils and plastic wraps, Alcoa(R) wheels, and Baco(R) household wraps. Among its other businesses are vinyl siding, closures, fastening systems, precision castings, and electrical distribution systems for cars and trucks. The company has 129,000 employees in 42 countries and has been named one of the top three most sustainable corporations in the world at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More information can be found at

About Alcoa Foundation

Established in 1952, Alcoa Foundation is a global resource that actively invests in improving the quality of life in the countries around the world where Alcoa operates. The Foundation's grants address global and local needs in Areas of Excellence that include: Conservation and Sustainability, Global Education and Workplace Skills, Business and Community Partnerships and Safe and Healthy Children and Families. Alcoa Foundation manages Alcoa's ACTION and Bravo! programs which recognize the volunteer efforts of employees with grants to the organizations they serve. For more information about Alcoa Foundation, visit, under Community.