Future 500 | Finding common ground between uncommon allies

earth day 50

On Earth Day 2016, a diverse group of approximately 100 corporate, environmental, academic, and philanthropic leaders gathered in Dallas, Texas, to launch an unprecedented collaboration. The Earth Day 50 Challenge unites leaders of the world’s most influential companies and dedicated environmental advocates. Their audacious agenda:

Halt, and begin repairing, decades of damage to the world’s oceans, forests, and climate, and show measurable progress by April 2020 – the 50th anniversary of Earth Day.

Future 500 and Earth Day Texas have released their official report on the accomplishments from the 2016 inaugural convening. The report features a detailed breakdown of the systemic systemic solutions to address the root causes of ocean, forest, and climate degradation. Learn what our participants identified as key efforts needed to reverse ecosystem decline through forestry and fishery protection, ocean and forest restoration, and carbon pricing. Get your copy of the 2016 Earth Day 50 Challenge Report here:

Get your copy


What is a systemic solution?

Systemic solutions harness the natural flow of existing systems–ecological, economic, social–to solve challenges and meet needs. Such solutions do not employ command-and-control policy prescriptions.

Few environmental initiatives are purely systemic, but the more they reflect systemic principles, the more affordable and effective they can be. Well-designed systems can be favorable both to prosperity and sustainability. Corporate and advocacy representatives who answered the Earth Day 50 Challenge have committed to a collaborative process for identifying and implementing these systemic solutions by Earth Day 2020. Learn more about this approach to systemic problem-solving by downloading the Earth Day 50 2016 report:

Learn more

Business As a Positive Force

Corporations are typically portrayed as environmental villains—sometimes for good reason. But the business sector is increasingly making strides toward proactive, positive environmental action, from pre-competitive collaboration and lobbying for stronger carbon regulation to implementing strict environmental standards throughout the supply chain. Yesterday’s demons are today’s leaders. Today’s corporate villains can become environmental champions.

The Earth Day 50 Challenge identifies the leaders in corporate action to inspire and encourage executives across sectors and throughout the supply chain to direct their influence and resources toward positive, systemic change.

Finding Common Ground

Our environmental challenges loom large, and extreme polarization is limiting our ability to succeed. The Challenge puts collaboration before confrontation. By building on shared goals, corporate leaders and advocacy groups can exchange influence and ideas to achieve systemic solutions we can all agree on.

Now is the Time to Act

The climate is reaching a tipping point, as are our oceans and forests. Collaborative action is needed now—from corporations, advocates, philanthropists and policy makers. We call on 50 companies and their stakeholders to step up their game.  Through sustained collaboration and commitment, we can build momentum toward systemic solutions to protect and restore our oceans forests and climate.

Read the report

Are you a business or advocacy leader seeking opportunities and collaborators to amplify your impact? Join the Earth Day 50 Challenge network. Contact us and learn more at Future 500.org.