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Mission & Goals

Man with bicycle at sunset

WRI’s mission is to move human society to live in ways that protect Earth’s environment and its capacity to provide for the needs and aspirations of current and future generations.

Our Goals

We focus on seven urgent global challenges that must be addressed to reduce poverty, grow economies and protect natural systems:

  1. Climate: Protect communities and natural ecosystems from damage caused by greenhouse gas emissions, and generate opportunities for people by catalyzing a global transition to a low-carbon economy.

  2. Energy: Drive the scale-up of clean, affordable power systems throughout the world to deliver sustainable socio-economic development.

  3. Food: Ensure the world’s food systems reduce their impact on the environment, drive economic opportunity and sustainably feed 9.6 billion people by 2050.

  4. Forests: Alleviate poverty, enhance food security, conserve biodiversity and mitigate climate change by reducing forest loss and restoring productivity to degraded, deforested lands.

  5. Water: Achieve a water-secure future by mapping, measuring and mitigating global water risks.

  6. Sustainable Cities: Improve quality of life in cities by developing and scaling environmentally, socially and economically sustainable urban and transport solutions.

  7. The Ocean: We are charting the path for a New Ocean Economy that is good for jobs, economic growth and human health — while protecting and restoring the ocean.

Our Centers

We design solutions for and analyze these seven critical goals through the lenses of our four Centers:

Our Business Center harnesses the private sector to spur action, innovation and ambition in support of sustainable development outcomes. We combine research, analysis, tools and direct engagement with businesses to create solutions that advance environmental sustainability and drive value.

Our Economics Center helps decision-makers identify opportunities for cost-effective action to protect or enhance natural resources, and ensure the delivery of essential ecosystem services. We provide research and tools to help identify and compare the full costs and benefits of continuing on a business-as-usual growth path versus more sustainable options.

Our Finance Center aims to mobilize and shift public and private sector investments toward sustainable development — particularly in developing nations. We advance transparency, sound governance, environmental and social safeguards, and public-private partnerships to ensure this finance is ambitious, accountable and effective.

Our Governance Center works to empower people and support institutions to foster socially equitable and environmentally sound decision-making.

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