Science + Finance + Collaboration: Unveiling Blue Forest’s new mission and values

Written by: Seren Pendleton-Knoll, Director of Strategy & External Affairs

In 2013, the Rim Fire raced across 250,000 acres of the Stanislaus National Forest and Yosemite National Park–it was the second-largest wildfire ever in California. This event spurred the creation of the Forest Resilience Bond. 

This was the beginning of Blue Forest. Over the last nine years, we have seen the Forest Resilience Bond (FRB) attract millions of dollars of funding for crucial forest restoration projects. 

Blue Forest has continued to identify impactful financing solutions for the ecosystem restoration economy. We’ve launched our asset management arm, Blue Forest Asset Management, and the California Wildfire Innovation Fund. Through the FRB Catalyst Facility, we’ve expanded from California to the Western U.S. And we’re increasing the pace and scale of restoration wherever we work.

This exponential growth resulted in our desire to take a holistic look in 2023 at how far we’ve come, and pause to reflect on the impact we want to have and the organization we want to be.

We spent the better half of last year in brainstorming, soundboarding, and listening sessions across our staff, partners, and board members in order to articulate the why, the what, and the how of Blue Forest–distilling down to the core of what makes us unique. 

This work resulted in our new mission statement: To accelerate ecological restoration through conservation finance, enabling climate resilience for ecosystems and communities. 

This new mission statement expresses our what (accelerating ecological restoration through conservation finance) and our why (to enable climate resilience for ecosystems and communities). As we grow as an organization, the heart of our work is in the intersection of community and ecosystems. 

Our commitment to ecological restoration, conservation finance, climate resiliency, and the combination of ecosystems and communities were the driving factors behind the development of our new Blue Forest values as well. 

These values help articulate how we do our work as we continue to grow into an organization that is both effective and impactful.

Far beyond just residing on a website, we want our values to be deeply embedded in the activities of our organization, from recruitment of employees, to how we execute our work, to the way we partner with others and design financial products. Our Blue Forest values articulate who we are and how we work, and inform our priorities and strategies.

We are pleased to share our new values, and showcase why we are driven by them. 

🤓📚Committed to Continuous Learning

We’re dedicated to deepening our knowledge as a team.

As a multidisciplinary organization at the intersection of conservation and finance, we find immense joy in the act of ongoing learning. We are dedicated to deepening our knowledge within and beyond our disciplines–emphasizing learning from diverse perspectives and broadening our understanding of the world. Ongoing learning enables continuous improvement, strengthening our organization through sharing experiences of failure and success. 

🤝Driven by Collaboration

We believe ecosystem restoration can only happen through collaboration with partners and communities. 

Our work starts and ends with collaboration. Siloed organizations cannot accomplish ecosystem restoration–collaboration rooted in transparency, trust, and understanding is essential. Recognizing this, we seek to build meaningful partnerships that span local communities and organizations, the scientific community, and state, Tribal, and federal partners to craft effective, impactful, and enduring solutions. 

💡Thoughtful Innovators For Impact

We understand that deliberate and careful innovation creates long-lasting solutions.

We acknowledge that the current pace of restoration must increase to match the scale of restoration needed to achieve resilient ecosystems and communities. Innovation is necessary to increase pace and scale. Innovations we develop at Blue Forest are thoughtfully built in partnership with communities and organizations, thoroughly researched, transparent, open to feedback, economically viable, durable, and continually improved upon. 

🍃📈Grounded in Science 

We believe effective ecosystem restoration is rooted in Western Science and Traditional Ecological Knowledge.

We are committed to a holistic approach integrating insights from various scientific disciplines. We understand that effective ecosystem restoration applies both Western Science and Traditional Ecological Knowledge. Through co-creation of knowledge, we seek to support the health of the land and effectively communicate the environmental, economic, social, and cultural benefits of ecosystem restoration.

🌎💚Passionate About Restoring Earth’s Ecosystems

We’re driven by an unwavering commitment to restoring our ecosystems.

Fundamental to Blue Forest is a belief in the value of the earth’s ecosystems. We are driven by a commitment to restore and protect landscapes to create resilient ecosystems, laying the foundation for sustainable and resilient communities. 

We remain committed to advancing landscape-scale restoration, and look forward to continuing to advance our mission and embed our values throughout our work. Learn more about Blue Forest here