JUN 2015: Virunga’s Future: Last Stand before UNESCO’s 39th session of the World Heritage Committee

On June 28th will start the 39th session of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee where the state of Conservation of Virunga National park will be discussed. The World Heritage Committee comprises representatives from 21 States Parties to the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (1972). Virunga was designated as a World… Read More

1.000 Reasons Save Virunga: Virunga’s Outstanding Universal Values

The UNESCO Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage has been designed to protect among others the natural objects with the “significant importance”. Here you can learn more about UNESCO World Heritage Convention and why Virunga National Park represents one of the most mystical and valuable natural World Heritage sites in the… Read More

DRC Civil Society: Survival of Communities in Virunga National Park is Non-Negotiable

Open Letter to His Excellency Mr. Prime Minister and Head of Government, Democratic Republic of Congo . The civil society organizations working for the promotion and protection of the Environment and Human Rights in North Kivu (CREDDHO, FECOPEILE, IDPE, SOPR and CREF Network), in the East of the Democratic Republic of Congo, are grateful for… Read More

Global Witness investigates oil-lobby tactics during UNESCO meeting on Virunga

When an oil company promises to suspend hugely controversial work in Africa’s oldest national park it should be cause for celebration. But the commitment by British oil company Soco to withdraw from Virunga National Park—a Congolese World Heritage Site that is home to rare mountain gorillas—was rife with ambiguity. If it sounds too good to… Read More

No Victory for Virunga: Park boundaries could be redrawn to accommodate Oil Exploration

DR-Congo’s member of the parliament interview sheds even more light over why SOCO’s chairman Rui de Sousa said a few days ago at the company’s AGM : “We have not pulled out – it’s not the point” Francois Nzekuye: “We can then ask for the declassification of part of Virunga National Park” “Nobody has lost, nobody has… Read More

The Treasure of Virunga…De Merode’s ‘crazy’ plan…he lives and so does his plan!

Unauthorized translation from the article „Der Schatz von Virunga“ by Juliane von Mittelstaedt, published in Der Spiegel 17/19.4.2014. Translation by Angela Roemelt. Only the German original is valid for quotation. They never met but they compete against each other. One of fighting for a treasure above the soil, the other one for those beneath it.… Read More

Message 10 NO OIL IN VIRUNGA: Statement Kyavinyonge Fishers against SOCO – OIL

09-03-2014 This is a local statement from the fishers of one of the main fisheries in Lake Edward: Kyavinyonge, The statement is addressed to the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the oil company SOCO International plc. The statement is clear and unequivocal: “ We say no to all oil exploration or exploitation… Read More

Messsage 3 NO TO OIL IN VIRUNGA: Declaration of Butembo on Sustainable NR Management

15-06-2013 A large number of civil society organizations and local stakeholders signed a declaration demanding that the Congolese government takes meaningful action to protect the nature and people of Virunga National Park in DR Congo. The “Declaration of Butembo” urges the government to end the illegal exploitation of natural resources and the insecurity caused by… Read More

Virunga: The Real Price of Energy

Virunga: The real price of energy August 2, 2013 – Author: Hughes Belin . In 2010, the Congolese Government of Kinshasa granted concessions to European companies to exploit oil near the border with Uganda. Exploration is only starting now in a context of civil war. But the area includes one of the world’s most exceptional… Read More

Virunga’s future threatened by oil – it’s time to Draw The Line

Virunga’s future threatened by oil – it’s time to Draw The Line 1 August 2013 Virunga National Park, Africa’s oldest national park, could be of huge long-term value to local communities – if oil extraction is kept out. That’s the conclusion of the new Dalberg report published today. UK company Soco International plc is intending… Read More

July-Aug 2013: What have Governments and International Organizations said about Oil Exploration in Virunga National Park?

Save Virunga Half-Year 2013 Update:  What have Governments, International and Local Organizations said about Oil Exploration in Virunga National Park? . Answer: Governments and major countries have gotten together and expressed their concerns about oil exploration in Virunga National park. They urge both SOCO and the DRC government to respect national and international conventions. If… Read More

IUCN’s position on Virunga: Oil Development is Incompatible with World Heritage Status

Virunga National Park in peril from armed conflict and oil exploration 24 June 2013 | News story Two guards of the Congolese Institute for the Conservation of Nature lost their lives following attacks by armed groups in the Virunga National Park World Heritage site, a recent report has revealed. Topped with oil exploration, continued unrest… Read More