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Bill Ford Awards 23 Grants Totaling RMB 1.5 million ($240,000) at 13th Conservation & Environmental

Grants, China (CEGC) Award Ceremony

Bill Ford awarded 23 grants totaling RMB 1.5 million (US$ 240,000) to individuals and environmental organizations in China at the 13th annual Ford Motor Conservation & Environmental Grants, China (CEGC) today in Shanghai.

Since 2000, CEGC has awarded grants for projects across China , from tree planting in the Gobi desert to Buddhist monasteries working together to help promote biodiversity; from protecting bar-head goose eggs from predators, to funding photographers to document endangered animals and wildlife in remote corners of China.

"I am very proud of the CEGC program, and of all the efforts of the Ford team here in China. Through our actions we have honored the heritage of our company, as well as our vision of the future," said Bill Ford, executive chairman of Ford Motor Company. "Whatever challenges we face in the future, sustainability will remain a central element of our business strategy."

In addition to providing grants, CEGC has helped train more than 420 NGOs and leaders to learn and hone the organizational skills to take their programs to the next level.

Themed “Building up our Ecosystems, Promoting Sustainable Development”, CEGC 2012 has two award categories — “Leadership in Environmental Conservation” and “Excellence in Public Awareness Campaigns for Environmental Conservation” — with a total 23 awards and grants.

"Simply put, Ford supports this program because it’s part of our DNA," said Dave Schoch, chairman and CEO of Ford China. "At the end of today’s ceremony, CEGC will have distributed more than RMB 14.1 million (US $2.3 million) in grants to 301 of China’s environmental heroes. It is a program that Ford has run for 13 years-–and a program we are going to accelerate in the years to come."

“Greening Crocodile Island” and “the Qinghai 3 River Source Environmental Protection Scheme” were selected as the top in each category and were granted RMB 260,000 and 200,000 (US42,000 and 32,000) respectively, at a ceremony today in Shanghai attended by more than 700 Ford employees, media, NGOs and Ford executives.

“There is no doubt that Ford is a role model for corporations to execute their social responsibility. The automaker has been supporting China’s grassroots environmental conservation for more than 10 years,” said a member of the 2012 CEGC judging panel. “We have adjusted this year’s criteria by raising the bar for applicants and increasing our support to major projects. These measures will enable the sector to grow at a healthy rate.”

This year’s judging standards placed more emphasis on practical outcomes in order to encourage more tangible environmental conservation results.

Ford has been dedicated to building more great products, a strong business and a better world for many years. The company’s green vision and practices are embodied in many aspects including product development, the use of materials and manufacturing. Many recyclable, renewable and lightweight materials are utilized by the company in making cars equipped with more fuel efficient and eco-friendly powertrain systems. Ford is also committed to reducing the creation of hazardous substances in the manufacturing process in an effort to lower the impact on the surrounding environment.

The slew of measurements helped Ford to be named as the most responsible automobile company in China on the 2012 Fortune China CSR report, which also ranked Ford as the fourth most responsible foreign company operating in the country.

To further support the China’s grassroots NGO sector, Ford launched a year-long campaign “Level Up” in May, 2012, investing USD 250,000 (RMB 1.58 million) to build the organizational capacity of 100 grassroots environmental groups in the country.

According to a survey of 135 grassroots environmental groups conducted by Ford and its partners, more than 70 percent of grassroots environmental groups in China are undergoing significant organizational change and development. The campaign has enriched and expanded the influence of CEGC.

SHANGHAI, China / Bucuresti, 28.11.2012

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