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Project February 2, 2021

Collateral Damage of Conservation Projects on African Indigenous Population


Since the 1960 and 1970s, in several parts of Africa, international western organizations have implemented conservationist policies that, in order to protect the environment, have led to the mistreatment of local populations that have lived in these areas for centuries. With the help of local authorities, these policies almost systematically evicted the Indigenous communities, even though they lived in accordance with their natural environment, forbidding them to hunt, gather and farm, hence putting them in jeopardy.

At least 36% of intact forest landscapes are within Indigenous peoples’ lands, making these areas crucial to the mitigation action needed to avoid catastrophic climate change.

This project will narrow in on four particular stories that show the broader picture of the collateral damage caused by those conservationist policies. The stories will explore the National Park of Kahuzi-Biega in the Democratic Republic of Congo, the Embobut forest in Kenya, the Semēn Park in Ethiopia, and the Ebu forest in Cameroon.