Why are Protected Areas so Unprotected? Making a Deal for Virunga?

Every day we hear that the integrity of a protected area is being challenged by the expansion of industrial activities such as oil, gas and mining exploration. Last week it was the turn of Manu National Park in Peru’s Amazon one of the most biodiverse places on Earth and home of several indigenous peoples –… Read More

IUCN: Natural World Heritages like Virunga play life-supporting rol in Economy and Communities

New study by IUCN released at the 2014 IUCN World Parks Congress shows life-supporting role of Natural Heritages. Natural World Heritage sites are not just iconic places with exceptional nature, they also provide benefits that contribute to economies, climate stability and human well-being.  The report highlights the economic benefits and cost-effectiveness of preserving the exceptional World Heritage… 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

Save Virunga: Is Virunga Saved?

“Virunga National Park’s conservationists and activists are celebrating a victory today after British oil company SOCO International plc (SOCO) agreed to end its controversial operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). But the devil is in the details and many believe the war against drilling for oil in Africa’s oldest national park has just… Read More

Gorillas in Congo are in Danger: Oil exploration in Virunga

Instead of the hoped tourists, now the oil industry is moving in and stating that their positive effects would easily balance minor environmental damages… Unofficial translation of the German article Die Zeit “Der große Ausverkauf des Virunga-Nationalparks” By Jonas Schaible Although the Democratic Republic of Congo through the last two decades has had to mourn… Read More

WWF: UK Government set to examine Soco’s activities in Virunga National Park

14 February 2014 The UK Government is set to examine the activities of Soco, a London-based oil company, over alleged violations of environmental protections and human rights abuses in a protected African World Heritage Site. It was announced today that a complaint filed by WWF has been accepted, and issues related to respect for human… Read More

3 FEB, 2014: IUCN welcomes Total’s ‘no-go’ commitment and calls other companies to follow suit

IUCN welcomes Total’s ‘no-go’ commitment in World Heritage sites 03 February 2014 | International news release Oil and gas company Total has confirmed that it will not carry out extractive operations within natural World Heritage sites, including Virunga National Park. IUCN welcomes this decision and calls on all oil and gas companies to follow suit.… Read More

Save Virunga Rewind 2013

Save Virunga is a global initiative to protect Virunga, Africa’s Oldest National Park, from oil exploration and exploitation. These are the moments and most pressing issues that defined Save Virunga in 2013. 2014: Preserving Virunga National Park will bring sustainable development, peace and stability in the conflict affected areas of Eastern DR-Congo. Governments, Businesses and… 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

Exploitation du pétrole dans le parc de Virunga: une option «pas envisageable» pour WWF

Exploitation du pétrole dans le parc de Virunga: une option «pas envisageable» pour WWF Par Léa-Lisa Westerhoff Le Fonds mondial pour la nature (WWF) a déposé une plainte contre la compagnie pétrolière anglaise Soco auprès de l’Organisation de coopération et de développement économiques (OCDE). La pomme de discorde, c’est le projet de cette entreprise d’explorer… Read More

Who is misleading who? SOCO’s statement in response to Virunga local communities’ films

SOCO’s Statement in Response to Virunga Communities’ fears  . All of these testimonies were filmed in and around Virunga National Park and are meant to give the people of North Kivu a voice about their social, environmental and human rights concerns. . . All of these local stories are dealing with oil exploration in Virunga… Read More

Oct 7th,2013 – WWF vs. SOCO: Soco’s exploration in Virunga violates OECD guidelines

WWF alleges British oil company violated environmental and human rights provisions in Virunga. Soco’s exploration in Virunga violates OECD guidelines, WWF alleges October 2013. WWF has filed a complaint alleging that British oil company Soco International PLC has breached international corporate social responsibility standards. WWF contends that, in the course of Soco’s oil exploration activities… Read More