Think tanks have sought to:
- cast doubt on the seriousness of environmental problems,
- attack environmentalists,
- oppose environmental regulations, and
- promote free market remedies to environmental problems such as privatisation, deregulation and the expanded use of property rights.
Corporations that wish to portray themselves in public as environmentally concerned often fund such think tanks, whom they are not readily identified with, to oppose environmental reforms whilst publicly supporting environmental goals.
Think tanks have themselves supported a number of corporate front groups and Wise Use groups. Think tanks such as the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) have worked closely with Wise Use groups.