A new conservation project has been launched in the Upper-Niger National Park (PNHN) in central Guinea. Funded with €35,000 from the Dutch support fund Stichting Otterfonds, the "Participatory Biodiversity Management of the Upper Niger National Park" project aims to eliminate problems such as uncontrolled logging, uncontrolled hunting and bushfires through better involvement of local communities in park management.
Thirteen neighbouring villages (2,000 people directly concerned) of the Upper-Niger National Park (NNNP) will be “actively” involved in the conservation of the biodiversity of the 1.2 million hectare protected area in central Guinea. After being equipped with the park’s ecological knowledge, these communities will see their income increase thanks to income-generating activities adapted to the park’s challenges. This is the objective of the “Participatory Biodiversity Management of the Upper Niger National Park” project, launched on 30 December 2022 in Conakry, the capital of Guinea.
Financed to the tune of 35,000 euros by the Dutch support fund Stichting Otterfonds, the project will be carried out by the Guinean non-governmental organisation (NGO) Green Transformation 2050 (GT2050), in partnership with the Guinean branch of the association Energies 2050. The two organisations have formed a partnership on the fight against climate change, the development of local communities and the development of renewable and sustainable energy.
“The Upper-Niger Park plays a vital role in protecting Guinea’s natural environment and provides opportunities for people to connect with nature. GT2050 as a young grassroots organisation is committed to playing its part. Our organisation will continue to work in environmental protection and mobilise additional external resources to support the government,” says Alpha O. Kaloga, the chairman of the board of Green Transformation 2050.
The preservation and management of the NNHP remains a challenge and an urgent priority for Guinea and the institutions in charge of the environment. Crossed by the Niger River and its tributaries, the park is classified as a Ramsar site and is a refuge for several migratory birds. The site is home to more than 300 bird species and the park has been recognised as an Important Bird Area by the conservation organisation Birdlife.
Unfortunately, these species and their habitats are threatened by anthropic pressures that the park’s staff alone cannot cope with, mainly uncontrolled logging, uncontrolled hunting and bush fires.