ALERT! Congo’s Rainforests – Including Gorilla Rich Virunga National Park – Targeted by UK’s SOCO Oil Company
By Ecological Internet’s Rainforest Portal
The Congo Basin [search]– home to some of Earth’s last large, ecologically intact, biodiversity rich rainforests – may soon be decimated by oil rigs, pipelines, deforestation, and oil spills. SOCO International – a London-listed oil company – has announced oil exploration plans in Virunga National Park – Africa’s oldest national park. Virunga is an UNESCO World Heritage site, home to a large population of wild gorillas, and many other important wildlife species, ecosystems, and local forest-dependent communities.
Oil exploration in these globally vital rainforest ecosystems will further set a dangerous precedent that nowhere – whether protected, or ecologically and socially important – is immune from oil industry destruction. Given record oil prices and growing global demand, it appears every last bit of Earth’s large, wild and intact ecosystems will be sacrificed to industrial development – to extend our dependence upon fossil fuel, and delay transition now to renewable energy sources – while ensuring abrupt run-away climate change and global ecosystem collapse. Further rainforest ecocide for oil must end if we are to sustain global ecology. And standing old forests offer hope for advancement to the world’s forest dependent peoples.