Photo courtesy of Carbon War Room

Carbon War Room

In 2009—in response to the United Nations Climate Change Conference—Sir Richard Branson and a group of like-minded entrepreneurs founded Carbon War Room as a global nonprofit.

Carbon War Room’s goal: to accelerate the adoption of business solutions to advance the low-carbon economy. It engaged directly in markets to generate business-led solutions in maritime shipping, buildings, aviation, and other sectors, and it prioritized the flow of capital to low-carbon solutions as the key metric of success.

In 2014, Carbon War Room merged into Rocky Mountain Institute because we knew we could do more, both faster and better, together than we could do apart. Today, Carbon War Room’s bold, entrepreneurial approach is part of all RMI does to transform global energy use.

We thank Carbon War Room’s founders for their foresight and legacy.

Core Historical Successes


CWR launched the world’s first free-to-access vessel efficiency index at Since then, 39 charterers transporting over 2 billion metric tons of cargo per year use the rating for vessel selection, including Rio Tinto, Hess, BHP Billiton, and Cargill. The entire group represents 20 percent of global trade.


CWR championed Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) with Lockheed Martin, Ygrene, and Energi, which together made a $650 million commitment in Miami-Dade county, Florida, and Sacramento, California.


CWR helped facilitate the country’s largest PACE project, in Sacramento at Metro Center Corporate Park, and the $230 million Green Energy Corridor in Miami, Florida, which funded hurricane protection, energy efficiency, and renewable energy for commercial and residential properties.


Twelve Caribbean nations signed up to work with CWR to reduce their dependency on imported fossil fuels.