August 10, 2012
Alcoa Employees Embark on 10th Annual Environmental Expeditions with Earthwatch Scientists in Brazil, Canada and China
Research Focuses on Climate Change and Ecosystem Preservation
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Alcoa Foundation announced today that 26 Alcoa (NYSE:AA) employees, have been selected to participate in a unique professional development opportunity with Earthwatch Institute, an environmental organization whose mission is to promote the understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment. Through the 10-year partnership, nearly 150 Alcoa employees have contributed around 9,000 research hours to find solutions to a range of environmental and sustainability challenges.
For one week, the Alcoa Fellows will work alongside Earthwatch scientists in Brazil, Canada and China, and participate in facilitated learning sessions to expand their knowledge of how environmental issues relate to their life, communities and Alcoa. Upon return, they are also expected to create an action project to enhance the environment in their local community.
“Earthwatch expeditions provide a unique experience for Alcoans from around the world to work together with scientists on meaningful environmental projects in our key regions and then bring their learnings back to their colleagues and communities,” said Paula Davis, President, Alcoa Foundation. “Our partnership with Earthwatch Institute is a compelling way to engage our people and advance our goals around the environment and education.”
Meet the 2012 Alcoa Earthwatch Fellows and starting August 12, follow them through a blog on www.alcoa.com/earthwatch, where they will post videos, photos and stories about their experiences.
“We’re proud to celebrate our ten-year anniversary of partnership with Alcoa Foundation this year,” said Ed Wilson, CEO and president of Earthwatch. “This upcoming experience will surely enhance the employees’ knowledge and passion for the environment; help them appreciate the need for scientific research so that we can help inform proper environmental management; and instill a strong understanding of, and appreciate for, corporate responsibility.”
This year’s expeditions take place at Guyrá Farm in Brazil, the Arctic's edge in Canada and Dinghushan National Nature Reserve in China.
Brazil - August 12-18
Those who participate in "Conserving Brazil's Atlantic Forest" will work side by side with scientists to assess water quality; survey tree species, size, and density; and observe bird and mammal populations. Their data will help scientists understand the response of tropical rainforests to a suite of human pressures—including how those pressures change species composition and structure, and how they alter to the forests' contributions to the ecosystem at large.
China - August 26-September 1
Participants on the "Impact of Climate Change on the Forest in Dinghushan China" project will work with researchers to tag, photograph, measure and identify trees and monitor tree phenology, such as the timing of budding, leafing, flowering, and fruiting. Results from this research will enable reserve managers and local communities to plan appropriate adaptation measures.
Canada - September 16-22
Participants on "Climate Change at the Arctic's Edge" will gather data on the impacts of melting permafrost, which holds significant implications for the environment, such as releasing carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere.
Alcoa is the world’s leading producer of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum and alumina. In addition to inventing the modern-day aluminum industry, Alcoa innovation has been behind major milestones in the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation, consumer electronics and industrial markets over the past 120 years. Among the solutions Alcoa markets are flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, as well as Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, and building systems in addition to its expertise in other light metals such as titanium and nickel-based super alloys. Sustainability is an integral part of Alcoa’s operating practices and the product design and engineering it provides to customers. Alcoa has been a member of the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for ten consecutive years and approximately 75 percent of all of the aluminum ever produced since 1888 is still in active use today. Alcoa employs approximately 61,000 people in 31 countries across the world. More information can be found at www.alcoa.com.
About Alcoa Foundation
Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately US$446 million. Founded more than 50 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than US$550 million since 1952. In 2011, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than US$20 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships, engaging its people to improve the environment and educating tomorrow’s leaders. The work of Alcoa Foundation is further enhanced by Alcoa’s (NYSE:AA) thousands of employee volunteers who share their energy, passion and purpose to make a difference in the communities where Alcoa operates. Through the company’s signature Month of Service program, in 2011, a record 56 percent of Alcoa employees took part in more than 1,200 events across 24 countries, reaching 81,000 children, serving 9,000 meals, planting 34,000 trees and supporting 1,800 nonprofit organizations. More information can be found at www.alcoafoundation.com.
About Earthwatch Institute
Founded in 1971, Earthwatch is an international environmental organization whose mission is to engage people worldwide in scientific field research and education to promote the understanding and action necessary for a sustainable environment. Our vision is a world in which we live within our means and in balance with nature. Earthwatch currently supports 60 environmental research projects in 30 countries by providing funds and paying volunteers who work alongside leading field scientists and researchers. In the past 40 years, Earthwatch volunteers have contributed over 10 million hours to essential fieldwork. For more information about Earthwatch, visit www.earthwatch.org.