Meet the Team that Protects Virunga: EU, GWC and Leo

After an exceptionally challenging year for biodiversity conservation across the world because of the coronavirus pandemic, the European Union, environmentalist and Academy Award ® -winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio, and Global Wildlife Conservation (GWC) launched two initiatives to better protect the planet in 2021 worth €34 million today. Both initiatives -a Rapid Response for Ecosystems, Species… Read More

Virunga 2021: Renewing our Fractured Relationship with the Planet

The real cure for COVID is renewing our fractured relationship with the planet JAMES MASKALYK AND DAVE COURCHENE If humanity is to endure, the coming months must hold healing, not just of populations across the globe from the coronavirus, but of the Earth herself. As is true of many zoonoses (diseases that jumped from animals),… Read More

Hope for Virunga 2021: Hundreds of Elephants Return to DRC’s Park

A group of about 580 savanna elephants recently returned to Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo after crossing over from Queen Elizabeth National Park in Uganda. The reappearance of the elephants brings hope to a park that’s been beset with civil unrest, violence, and poaching for decades. In May, Virunga National… Read More

Dodgy Deal 4: Oil in East Africa, Communities at Risk! Save Murchison Falls!

Companies must take action to respect the rights of communities at risk in East Africa’s oil frontier In research released today alongside FIDH and partner organizations, Oxfam highlighted the major risks of oil projects led by French energy giant Total in Uganda and Tanzania, which would require over 12,000 families to lose land and endanger… Read More

Dodgy Deals 3: Over 500 Dams are Planned within Protected Areas! Save Upemba!

More than 500 dams are planned or under construction within protected areas, according to a new study published in Conservation Letters. These findings raise red flags as dams can have detrimental impacts on livelihoods of local communities such as fishing and floodplain farming, species movements, sediment flows to downstream deltas and floodplains, and other critical… Read More

Dodgy Deal 2: EACOP – Stop this Total Madness! Save Murchison Falls!

To Total CEO Patrick Pouyanné and all backers of the EACOP project: “As global citizens, we urgently call on you to cancel the East African Crude Oil Pipeline and stop drilling in national parks. Your plans threaten to destroy precious biodiversity hotspots and wildlife habitats – displacing tens of thousands of farmers. This project seriously… Read More

Dodgy Deal 1: Kipay and PowerChina’s Sombwe Dam in DRC Upemba National Park

About Sombwe Dam In June 2019, PowerChina and the Congolese company Kipay Investments Sarl signed a joint venture for the construction of the 150 megawatt (MW) Sombwe hydropower plant in the DRC. The proposed USD 400 million Sombwe complex includes a dam, reservoir, and road works. The hydropower plant is located inside Upemba National Park, one of the… Read More

Virunga Covid-19 and Africa’s National Parks: ‘Utter and Total Devastation’ 

Closed to tourists, pandemic is taking major toll on Virunga’s finances, local economy, as park reels from recent violence. SOPHIE NEIMAN June 2, 2020 Stretching some 3,000 square miles, Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, is the oldest and most biodiverse national park on the African continent. It was designated a… Read More

Save Murchison: A Major Oil Pipeline Project Strikes Deep at the Heart of Africa

Despite the global plunge in oil prices, a major pipeline that would carry oil 900 miles across East Africa is moving ahead. International experts warn that the $20 billion project will displace thousands of small farmers and put key wildlife habitat and coastal waters at risk. BY FRED PEARCE • MAY 21, 2020 Imagine a tropical version of… Read More

No Bail Out For Harmful Projects in Protected Areas: Save Upemba and Murchison Falls National Parks!

More than 265 civil society groups around the world are calling upon the Chinese government to ensure that COVID-19 related financial relief for struggling Belt and Road projects flows only to high quality overseas investments that meet stringent criteria aimed at protecting people and safeguarding the environment. The organizations urged China to avoid bailing out projects… Read More

Transmission of Diseases from Humans to Apes: Extra Vigilance for Virunga

With the current outbreak of the coronavirus disease, COVID-19, global attention has been drawn to the significant health risks posed by eating wild animals. As the number of infections from the coronavirus exploded in China, the outbreak was linked to a live animal and seafood market in Jianghan District, Wuhan. The specific animal source and… Read More