In 2016, the Trottier Family Foundation evaluated the possibility of replicating the success of The Atmospheric Fund (TAF) in Toronto by creating a climate fund in Montreal. With support from Dunsky Consulting and in partnership with the Clean Economy Fund, the idea progressed and spread to several Canadian cities. Following a series of consultations, May 2017 saw the birth of the Low Carbon Cities of Canada (LC3) network.
In 2018, the LC3 network—which includes the cities of Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver—requested funding of $183M from the federal government. This request was accepted and was combined with a $1 billion endowment granted to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) for the Green Municipal Fund. The FCM then became a partner of the LC3 network, and the Montreal Climate Centre (now the Greater Montreal Climate Fund) was launched.
The Greater Montreal Climate Fund is financed by an endowment of $32.5M from the federal government, which allows the organization to ensure the permanence of its operations and the lasting impact of its activities. This funding is the strength of the GMCF, for several reasons:
- Stability: The GMCF self-finances its operations through the return on investment of its endowment, which ensures the stability and sustainability of the organization.
- Independence: The fight against climate change is long-term, and its funding is at the mercy of changes in governments at all levels. Our funding in perpetuity gives us independence, agility, and the power to act, regardless of the political context.
- Leverage: The endowment provides us with significant leveraging power to raise public and private capital and significantly increase our activities.
- Double impact: The endowment serves as capital for mission-related impact investments, while the returns are used to finance our programs and grants, thereby doubling our impact.