In our lifetimes, a defining threat to human wellbeing is climate change. Far-reaching impacts such as ocean acidification, heat waves, droughts, and floods are already endangering species and exacerbating poverty, hunger, and the spread of disease. To continue down this path will mean devastating pressure on ecosystems and increased vulnerability for billions of people. We must act now – as individuals and communities, as business leaders, and as policymakers.
To avoid catastrophic climate change, two big changes need to happen: The world’s major economies must transition to cleaner, low-carbon energy; and land use must become more sustainable and carbon-friendly. Many of the ideas, tools, and resources we need already exist, and human innovation keeps creating new possibilities. Our task is to motivate and empower key players to marshal their forces to act and to lead the way through policy influence, scalable demonstration projects, cutting edge science, and collaboration with the private sector.
"Addressing climate change presents opportunities for innovation in all facets of human life—in energy production and use, agricultural and forestry practices, urban design, and basic infrastructure."
New thinking and science in these areas can address climate threats while contributing to healthy lands and waters, safer communities, and strong economies.
The Nature Conservancy brings to the table significant scientific credibility, financial acumen, global reach, and a pragmatic, nonpartisan approach — all ingredients for leadership to broaden the portfolio of strategies and extent of commitments to climate action. We are also applying our tradition of innovation — in conservation finance, large-scale demonstration projects, and public-private partnerships — to find new creative climate change solutions.
-- Our Strategy --
The Conservancy is pursuing a comprehensive strategy to address climate change and secure a better future for all that includes:
Mobilizing climate action for a low-carbon future.
We are: a) repositioning the U.S. policy narrative to broaden support for climate action in all 50 states using new research, analysis, campaign tools, and strategic outreach; b) strengthening international commitments, policies, and financing to reduce emissions and create low-carbon, climate-resilient economies; and c) promoting a low-carbon future in five key countries (United States, China, Mexico, Indonesia, and Brazil).
Catalyzing investments in nature for a stable climate.
We are working with communities, companies, and countries to advance natural solutions to help the world move toward a cleaner, healthier, and more secure future. Investment in nature can provide cost-effective solutions for both mitigation and adaptation.
Conserving, enhancing, and restoring natural systems to strengthen resilience.
We are taking the experiences from our on-ground demonstration projects to create new science and promote policies and actions that use natural infrastructure to reduce risks associated with floods, storms, drought, sea level rise, and other climate impacts.
Lynn Scarlett is the Global Managing Director for Public Policy at The Nature Conservancy. In this role, she directs policy in the United States and the 35 countries in which the Conservancy operates with a focus on climate and nature- based solutions.
Climate change is one of the world’s most urgent challenges and an immediate risk to our communities, economies, and to our conservation mission. Lynn believes that practical, innovative solutions can create a prosperous, low-carbon future that is cleaner, healthier, and more secure for everyone and that nature-based solutions are an essential component of controlling carbon pollution and protecting against climate impacts.
Most recently, she was the Deputy Secretary and Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Department of the Interior, Lynn also served at Interior as the Acting Secretary of the Interior in 2006.
While Interior’s Deputy Secretary, Lynn initiated and chaired the Department’s Cooperative Conservation Working Group and its first-ever Climate Change Task Force. She established the Interior’s Ocean and Coastal Activities office to coordinate cross-departmental ocean and coastal work. She chaired the nation’s Wildland Fire Leadership Council. She served on the Executive Committee of the President’s Management Council.
Lynn is author or co-author of publications on climate change adaptation; ecosystem services; large landscape conservation; and science and decision making.
She chairs the Science Advisory Board of NOAA, co-chairs the Landscape Conservation Cooperatives Council established in 2014 by the U.S. Department of the Interior, and co-chairs the National Academy of Sciences Sustainability Roundtable. She also served on the US Global Change Research Program Committee and is a co-convening lead author of the National Climate Assessment.
She is on the Dean’s Advisory Council of the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at UC Santa Barbara. She also serves on the boards of trustees of the National Wildlife Refuge Association and is a member of the Coordinating Council of the Practitioners’ Network for Large Landscape Conservation.
Lynn received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in political science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she also completed her Ph.D. coursework and exams in political science and political economy.