Day two of the IUCN Africa Protected Areas started with a High Level Leadership Dialogue on the Key challenges and opportunities of Protected and Conserved Areas in Africa. Key points of discussion included the need for Africa to balance economic development and conservation and the need for innovative and sustainable financing solutions in Africa, by Africa.
Acknowledging that there is indeed a rising African population, the panelists noted that economic development will continue to be prioritized over conservation, unless there is a paradigm shift in how African governments view conservation.Ecological awareness was raised as an area that needs to be actively tapped into as ‘conservationists’ were challenged to use their knowledge to advise and educate sitting and future governments that economic development and all life in Africa, depend on ecosystem goods and services.
Public-Private Partnerships were highlighted as an opportunity that governments can pursue to address financing challenges of Africa’s protected and conserved areas. Collaborative management partnerships between governments and private sector were identified as a key solution that can contribute to effective management of protected and conserved areas, for them to effectively play their role in securing Africa’s natural capital, and mitigate the impacts of climate change.
Opening of Pavilions
16 pavilions opened on day 2, building on the Congress launch momentum. The pavilions provide an opportunity for delegates to engage with each other and learn more about initiatives taking place. View the full list of the Pavilions and their sessions here.
ACBA Policy Brief Launch
The Africa CSOs Biodiversity Alliance (ACBA) today unveiled a policy brief provide actionable recommendations using a One Health approach for great ape conservation, responsible tourism and community benefits. The launch at the ACBA pavilion at 4.00pm was led by Frank Turyatunga (Acting Director and Regional Representative UNEP Africa Office and a keynote address by Dr. Andrew Seguya, Executive Secretary, Greater Virunga Transboundary Collaboration. Dr. Gladys Kalema-Zikusoka, founder of Conservation Through Public Health (CTPH) and UNEP Champion of the Earth for Science and Innovation 2021, who co-authored the policy brief with the International Gorilla Conservation Programme, presented on the motivation behind the document. Thereafter, a panel of great ape conservation experts and tourism operators shared their insights on the importance of protecting human and great ape health. Due to the similarity of their genetic makeup, great apes are highly susceptible to human diseases. As evidenced by the COVID-19 pandemic, maintaining health and safety measures is essential for thriving communities and economies
Conservation Giants:Celebrating African Conservation Leaders
The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) convened and moderated an intergenerational panel bringing together conservation giants to reflect on how best to advance conservation efforts in a rapidly changing Africa. The panelists came from a wide pool of partners: WWF Regional Office for Africa, Resource Africa UK, and Biodiversity Hub International. They discussed the opportunities and gaps in building meaningful and innovative collaboration. Fred Kwame, AWF Vice President, Global Leadership delivered a keynote address, and Simangele Msweli, AWF Senior Manager, Youth Program moderated the session. There was a consensus that there is a need to strongly invest in mentoring the younger generation and for the youth to take more deliberate action when opportunities arise.