What We Do


© Conservation International photo by Sara Bharrat

When a forest is lost anywhere, people feel it everywhere.

© Pete Oxford

Forests make life possible.

1 in 4
depend on forests

1 in 4 people depend directly on forests for their livelihoods

prescription drugs

As many as 120 prescription drugs worldwide derive directly from plants found in forests.

greenhouse gas emissions

Deforestation accounts for 11 percent of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.


The world has lost nearly half its forests for agriculture, development or resource extraction. Yet the value of the benefits that standing forests provide is immense: Tropical forests alone account for at least 30 percent of the global mitigation action needed to halt climate change. Yet this value remains largely invisible.


Conservation International strives to protect tropical forests around the world, working directly with the communities who live in, and depend on, these forests. Through science, policy and partnerships, we work to show that forests are worth more standing than cut down.


Conservation International uses a science-based approach to prioritize the safeguarding forests and the benefits they provide; to quantify the value of those benefits for decision-makers and key stakeholders; and to protect them sustainably for the long term. ​

El Dorado Gold

El Dorado Gold is a two pronged initiative which addresses the policy, technological, financial and other challenges faced in ensuring that mining is done in a responsible manner. One component of the project encourages practices that ensure that small and medium scale miners avoid unnecessary deforestation.

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Green Conversations

Green Conversations, a project funded by the United Nations Environment Programme, created open, non-partisan, inclusive spaces (physical and online) where Guyanese can learn about green economic development and what it means to their future and engage in discourse around the subject in ways relevant to their unique circumstances. We believe this will build on existing capacities and willingness of Guyanese to participate in national conversations on green development.

Supporting REDD+ projects to protect forests

Conservation efforts are more effective when they have buy-in from the people that live in the forests and depend on them. To that end, the REDD+ initiative (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation) rewards countries and landholders for protecting and restoring forests, thereby reducing carbon emissions. CI helps Guyana maintain REDD+ by creating benefit-sharing arrangements for local and indigenous communities, strengthening local sustainable forest management capacity, supporting the institutionalization of an effective Monitoring, Reporting and Verification System and piloting a natural capital accounting project.