Midwest Carbon Leadership Project

To achieve deep carbon emission reduction for a truly carbon neutral future, we have to fill the existing knowledge gaps in the technological and policy solutions. This will require new ideas, experimentation and demonstration, and direct collaboration between people and organizations with varied resources and expertise.

Our Mission

The Midwest Carbon Leadership Project aims to be a world-class collaborative and agenda-setting space where regional private-sector leaders, community leaders, and University experts come together to:

  • build meaningful and purpose-driven relationships,
  • explore and define the unknowns slowing our progress towards true carbon neutrality,
  • co-create research projects to solve those unknowns, and
  • share the innovations and outcomes widely.

Why the Midwest?

Conditions in the Midwest demand action. We are a leading emitter of greenhouse gasses and are challenged by a cold climate, disparate urban centers, persistent poor water quality, and stagnant emissions in our agricultural sector. We face a number of interconnected racial, economic, and risk injustices including differences in wealth, access to education and nature, incarceration, and exposure to climate hazards.

Conditions in the Midwest also provide opportunities for carbon leadership that can be translated around the world. We supply approximately 20 percent of the US gross domestic product (GDP) as home to major manufacturing, mining, and managed forests and headquarters for dozens of Fortune 500 companies, many of which have made commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in their own operations.


Project Sponsor

The Midwest Carbon Leadership Project is a part of Ecolab Foundation’s $5 million commitment to sustainability research and education at the University of Minnesota.

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