Forests are home to as much as 90% of the world’s land-based animal and plant life. They directly provide food, shelter, fuel and a source of income to the 1.6 billion people whose livelihoods depend on them. And forests also benefit our environment by regulating the climate and water cycles and preventing soil erosion.
But our forests are in crisis. The world has lost half its forests, and only a tenth of what remains is protected. Each year we lose another 130,000 square kilometres - an area the size of England.
We’re working around the world to protect forests against the many threats they face - from illegal logging to climate change - and to secure their long-term future.
We work in a variety of ways. There’s hands-on involvement on the ground in lots of the forests we help protect (listed below), but we’re also very active behind the scenes, lobbying and negotiating with governments to improve legislation and planning, as well as persuading large and small businesses to adopt a sustainable approach to using forest resources.
Forests where we work
The world's biggest tropical rainforest - we've been working here to limit deforestation for more than 40 years.
Third largest island on Earth, Borneo has lost half its forests - but is still uncovering amazing new species.
Largest pristine rainforest in Asia-Pacific, third largest in the world - with a staggering number of unique species.
Including the Amur-Heilong forest, the Atlantic forests of Brazil and Paraguay, Colombia and the Eastern Himalayas.
Key forest issues we're working on
- Sustainable use of forests - working with forest managers and related industries across the world, and helping to change the buying habits of wood and paper users
- Forest conversion for agriculture - we're helping make sure the growing global demand for commodities like palm oil and soya doesn't ruin forests and species
- Deforestation and climate change- our aim is to help make forest conservation more economically viable, which is essential if we're to control globe-warming carbon emissions