CSOs Say NO to Oil in DRC’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites Virunga and Salonga

DRC Civil Society united to protect Virunga and Salonga National park. These two UNESCO World Heritage Natural Sites represent an outstanding universal value and any project of partial disaffection could be considered as an inhuman act intentionally causing great suffering to the thousands of local communities and indigenous peoples who depend on these exceptional values… Read More

Good News For Virunga: Mountain Gorilla Numbers Surpass 1.000

Authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Republic of Rwanda, and Republic of Uganda release new census results. Rubavu, Rwanda, 31 May 2018 A recent survey documented 604 mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei), the largest number of mountain gorillas ever recorded in the transboundary Virunga Massif, one of the two remaining areas where this Critically… Read More

Virunga: Can Environmental Damage by Oil Exploration be Prosecuted as a Crime under International Law? 

This week was marked by the announcement by Global Witness that “the Democratic Republic of Congo’s government is attempting to reclassify swathes of two UNESCO-protected World Heritage Sites –Salonga and Virunga National Parks – to allow oil exploration to take place”. At the same time the International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, was concluding… Read More

The Guardian – ‘We know we may be killed’: The Rangers Risking their Lives for Virunga’s Gorillas

The huge national park in the Democratic Republic of Congo is one of the most dangerous conservation projects in the world. But thanks to the efforts of a committed force of rangers, populations of endangered species are recovering and locals say the park offers hope for the whole region. Jason Burke in Virunga national park,… Read More

Defending the Environment has Become a Suicide Mission in Many Parts of the World #Virunga

“Almost four environmental defenders a week killed in 2017” Environmental Warriors Environmental activists around the globe are being killed as they struggle to protect fragile ecosystems. From Brazil to Congo, the Philippines to Tanzania, the toll is heaviest in countries beset by corruption and weak enforcement, where entrenched government and business elites break laws with… Read More

Virunga and The Ecological Costs of War: Conflict a Consistent Killer of African Megafauna

Hope for Virunga and all these irreplaceable places and protected areas affected by conflict and war.  A new study highlights that  “sustained conservation activity in conflict zones—and rapid interventions following ceasefires—may help to save many at-risk populations and species.” Researchers report that war has been a consistent factor in the decades-long decline of Africa’s large mammals.… Read More

Mr Presidents: “Man did not weave the web of life – he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”

Virunga’s End of Year Thoughts CHIEF SEATTLE (circa 1780-1866) Chief Si’ahl (Seattle) is a famous 19th century American Indian chief of the Duwamish Tribe whose tribal ancestral homelands include the area known today as the City of Seattle, state of Washington, in North America of the U.S.A. In fact, the City of Seattle was named after… Read More

Difficult Times for Virunga and its Hydropower Plants: Time to Get the Facts Right !

Virunga National Park is under threat and witnessing an increase in attacks and misinformation around its development projects in North Kivu. Everything started a few months ago with recurrent militia attacks in and around the construction site of its third Hydropower plant of 12,8 MW close to Lubero. Making it very difficult for the park… Read More

Dian Fossey: Secrets in the Mists, a Story about an Intrepid Gorilla Conservationist in the Virunga Mountains

Secrets in the Mist offers an intimate account of the life and legacy of the iconic primatologist Dr Dian Fossey, 32 years after her vicious murder. Under the watchful assistance of the late anthropologist Dr Louis Leakey and sponsorship by National Geographic, Dian Fossey (1932-85) set forth to explore and study the endangered mountain gorillas… Read More

Virunga, the wild park with fire in its soul: Come Visit!

On the edge of the DRC is a place where nature puts on such a show, it ignites passions in rangers and visitors beyond compare. Welcome to Virunga National Park, home to more species of wildlife than any other reserve in Africa. by Scott Ramsay  ‘You’re still alive!’ laughed Daniel Hanamali, our local guide. We’d… Read More

Creating a Movement of Resistance – part I : Building Trust and Understanding between Pygmy Peoples and Virunga Rangers

Marginalised for decades, Pygmy peoples are fighting for recognition and land rights. Even the term ‘pygmy’ is laced with historical racism and prejudice; they are not treated as equal citizens in their home country. At the heart of pygmy culture is their forest, central to their spiritual beliefs, and ancestral heritage it is also their source… Read More

Linking Tourism and Conservation in Virunga: One of the Planets Hotspots!

Virunga was the first national park on the continent of Africa. Today the Virunga National Park of the DR Congo is part of a three countries’ (including Rwanda and Uganda) group of protected areas covering the Virunga mountains, one of the planets hotspots with mountain gorillas as flag-ship species. For much of its long history,… Read More