Our Challenge

Forests provide food, medicines, wood, fiber and employment. They moderate freshwater flows, clean the air and influence regional precipitation. They provide a home to 70 million Indigenous People and harbor the most biodiversity on the planet. And when left standing, forests play a critical role in the fight against climate change by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

But forests and other natural landscapes like wetlands, peatlands and savannahs — and their ability to provide vast benefits to people, nature and climate — are under threat. The expansion of agriculture, mining, timber extraction and other unsustainable practices is destroying and degrading forests and other ecosystems around the world.   

Data reveals 7.4% of tropical primary rainforest has been lost just since the turn of the century. In 2023, the world lost 3.7 million hectares of tropical primary rainforests — areas of critical importance areas of critical importance for livelihoods, carbon storage and biodiversity — equivalent to a rate of 10 football (soccer) pitches a minute.


people rely on forests for livelihoods


Forests and nature-based solutions can deliver one-third of global emissions reductions needed by 2030

Our Approach

WRI aims to conserve and restore forests and other natural landscapes for benefits as diverse as cultural identity, livelihoods, water security, wood supply, biodiversity and carbon capture.

We work with civil society, governments and the private sector to ensure natural landscapes are governed fairly and managed sustainably. We support radical transparency and open access to the latest data and cutting-edge monitoring technology, so that all actors can be held accountable for actions that impact forests and nature. We partner with governments, entrepreneurs, investors and experts to build the social and financial conditions for conserving natural landscapes and restoring degraded ones. And we produce groundbreaking research to shed light on important forest and land issues and aid in better decision-making.

The go-to source for insights on the state of the world’s forests, the Global Forest Review applies the latest geospatial data with expert analyses to track vital forest trends.  

Launch Platform

WRI's work on forests focuses on a number of specific initiatives, including Global Forest WatchForest Legality and Forest and Landscape Restoration. Explore all projects in depth.

Sign up for WRI's Forest Program News and Updates


Media Contacts

  • Marcia MacNeil

    Senior Communications Manager, Land and Forests

  • Jerin Tan.

    Digital Communications Manager, Global Restoration Initiative

  • Luke Foddy

    Communications Manager, Nature Crime Alliance