World Resources Institute created the Land Accelerator, an exciting four-month program and curated network for entrepreneurs focused on restoring degraded forests and farmland. It is anchored by an intensive week-long workshop when the cohort meets in person. Learn more about the program in Africa, Latin America, and South Asia!

How do we simultaneously mitigate climate change and improve food security? Is there a way for us to provide wildlife habitat while creating jobs? What about better air and water quality?

The answer: landscape restoration. This occurs through the planting of trees and other vegetation (active restoration), or leaving the land alone to regenerate naturally (passive restoration).

Restoring degraded land provides environmental benefits such as carbon sequestration, wildlife habitat, and improved water and air quality. Restoration is crucial to mitigate climate change and is also a key strategy to improve food security and support livelihoods.

While restoration has so far been funded primarily through public finance from governments, this source of money is insufficient today and in the future. It’s important for the private sector to be involved, and this requires that restoration deliver a financial return. That’s where The New Restoration Economy—part of the Global Restoration Initiative at WRI—comes in.

We’re working to make restoration profitable and capable of attracting private investment. By making the economic case, we will catalyze a growing space with the potential to deliver significant financial, environmental, and social returns.

The New Restoration Economy (NRE) is anchored around three pillars:

Business: NRE is identifying the business models that can enable restoration enterprises—both large and small—to scale. We are focused on innovative models that are profitable and impactful.

Finance: NRE is growing private investment in restoration by fostering a pipeline of investable projects, expanding the investor base, and researching financial mechanisms that can support restoration.

Economics & Policy: NRE is quantifying the employment and economic output generated by restoration in Brazil and Kenya. These analyses are important to mobilize support from governments.

To learn more about the New Restoration Economy, check out our blogs below and the following useful resources:

“Want to Make America Prosperous Again?” in Stanford Social Innovation Review (Mar 2017)

“The Business of Biodiversity” in Stanford Social Innovation Review (Feb 2017)

“Land Management is Crisis Management in Africa” in Project Syndicate (Nov 2016)

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