Why It Matters
Importance of forests
Forests are a vital resource for life on earth. They provide invaluable environmental, social and economic benefits to us all. Forests improve air and water quality, reduce soil erosion and act as a buffer against global warming. The forest industry also generates over $168 billion in global trade through wood products. Every business interacts with the forest industry on some level because of high levels of demand for timber and paper.
Well-managed and sustainable fishing is essential for healthy oceans, ecosystems and biodiversity worldwide. The global fishing industry employs around 200 million people and generates $80 billion each year. Sustainable and responsible fishing methods maintain catch at regeneration levels, reduce the amount of bycatch, allow declining species to recover, and keep the delicate balance of marine ecosystems intact.
Food Production and Land Use
According to the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization, the world’s population will reach 9 billion by the year 2050, and the demand for food will double. This increased demand will put incredible pressure on existing agricultural, aquaculture and fishing resources. The strain to produce crops and sell food at affordable levels will impact the world’s poor. These challenges require action from all levels including local communities, industry leaders, governments, and non-governmental organizations. Only by working together can we achieve the innovations and new technologies needed to feed, house, clothe and transport the world and maintain a living planet.
Fresh water is vital to life and yet it is a finite resource. Of all the water on Earth, just 3% is fresh water. Although critical to natural and human communities, fresh water is threatened by a myriad of forces including overdevelopment, polluted runoff and global warming. WWF works with businesses to improve the way water is managed to ensure adequate water for local people and ecosystems and fair distribution of water among different water users.
Climate and Energy
Climate change poses a fundamental threat to the places, species and people’s livelihoods WWF works to protect. To adequately address this crisis we must urgently reduce carbon pollution and prepare for the consequences of global warming, which we are already experiencing. We engage with companies to set and meet goals to reduce carbon emissions both in their own operations and along the value chain, advance projects to protect their resources from climate impacts, ensure the sustainability of their core business.