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February 12th, 2015
New Global ‘Ratings Agency’ Ranks the 500 Institutions with the Power to End Deforestation

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Feb. 11, 2015—The Global Canopy Programme’s ‘Forest 500’, launched 11th February, identifies, ranks, and tracks the governments, companies and financial institutions worldwide that together could virtually eradicate tropical deforestation.  

Results from the project show that only a small number of actors worldwide have comprehensive policies in place to protect tropical forests.  

The majority of tropical forest loss and degradation is driven by the production of just a handful of globally traded ‘forest risk’ commodities: namely palm oil, soya, beef, leather, timber, and pulp and paper. These commodities move along complex global supply chains that are largely controlled by 500 powerbrokers in business, finance and government.  

In September 2014, leaders from governments, major multinationals, indigenous communities and civil society signed the landmark New York Declaration on Forests. It spells out ambitious commitments to end deforestation, including by eliminating it from the production of agricultural commodities by 2020. This mirrors an earlier pledge by the Consumer Goods Forum, a global alliance of 400 companies with combined sales of three trillion dollars, to achieve net zero deforestation supply chains by 2020. Similar commitments have been made within the financial community, most notably through the Banking Environment Initiative.  

To measure progress towards these goals the Global Canopy Programme has developed rigorous methodologies to identify and rank governments, companies and financial institutions based on their public policies and potential impacts on forests related to forest risk commodities.  

The Forest 500 ranking and analysis will be repeated annually until 2020, to help inform, enable and track progress towards this urgent global goal.  

To visit the Forest 500 website and see the results of the analysis visit

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