On May 3, 2022, the executive summary of OFAC's CONGO BASIN FORESTS - STATE OF THE FORESTS 2021 report was presented at the XV World Forestry Congress in Seoul.
The 2021 State of the Forest (SOF 2021) report is the seventh in the series published since 2005. The previous report was released in 2015 during the fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) held in Paris.
Ndjamena, Republic of Chad, April 11-13, 2022- The Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC) with financial and technical support of CIFOR through the RIOFAC Project is organizing the eleventh meeting of the Working Group of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Central Africa (WGCCD).
The Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC) is organizing, with the financial and technical support of CIFOR through the RIOFAC Project, the tenth meeting of the Working Group of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (WGCCD) in Central Africa from 11 to 13 April 2022 in Ndjamena, Republic of Chad.
This three-day regional workshop will enable participants to adopt common positions on issues of the fifteenth session of the Conference of Parties (COP15) to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). Specifically, it will review the various items of the agenda of COP15 and identify themes that are relevant for Central Africa; review the various items of the agenda; adopt a common positions document of COMIFAC countries on key themes of COP15; review the state of preparation of national delegations (composition of delegations, logistical aspects, etc.); design a framework for the preparation of COP15 and adopt common positions of COMIFAC countries on key themes of COP15; adopt the 2022 roadmap of the WGCCD.
According to Hervé Maidou, Executive Secretary of COMIFAC, "land degradation is a great challenge for all COMIFAC countries, hence the need to combine efforts to overcome this scourge. We want to believe that at the end of the workshop, a set of harmonized actions will be adopted, and that the 2022 roadmap of the WGCCD that will be adopted will serve as a good basis for negotiations at COP15.
Bringing together a variety of players including National Focal Points of the CCD of COMIFAC member countries; National Coordinators of COMIFAC from Chad, Burundi and Rwanda; and representatives of development partners, four main results are expected at the end of this major regional meeting:
- A common positions document of COMIFAC countries on various items on the agenda of CoP15 adopted;
- State of preparation at national level for this meeting reviewed and the logistical aspects discussed;
- A framework for the intervention of experts from COMIFAC countries at CoP15 adopted;
- A 2022 roadmap for the WGCCD adopted.
It should be recalled that this working session is part of the preparation of the fifteenth session of the Conference of Parties (COP15) to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) to be held in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire, from 9 to 20 May 2022 under the theme 'Earth. Life. Legacy: from scarcity to prosperity'. This theme is a call to action to ensure that the earth, the lifeline of this planet, continues to benefit present and future generations.
About the WGCCD
The technical working group called the Working Group of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Central Africa (WGCCD) was set up by the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat in 2008 to coordinate and monitor the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in Central Africa. This entity is made up of representatives of PASR/LCD-AC Liaison Centers (COMIFAC, ECCAS) ; Thematic Leaders of the PASR/LCD-AC (Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC), Economic Commission for Livestock, Meat and Fisheries Resources of Central Africa (CEBEVIRHA), International Commission of the Congo-Oubangui-Sangha Basin (CICOS), Intergovernmental Agency for the Development of Environmental Information (ADIE), Network of Forestry and Environmental Training Institutions of Central Africa (RIFFEAC); National Focal Points of the CCD of COMIFAC member countries; National Coordinators of COMIFAC from Chad, Burundi, Rwanda; and Representatives of development partners.
For more information, please contact the Deputy Executive Secretary, COMIFAC Technical Coordinator
Nchoutpouen Chouaibou firstname.lastname@example.org
Louisette Sylvie Yebel-Founga, COMIFAC communication expert email@example.com
From 25 February to 1 March 2022, a working session was held in Kinshasa to validate the decametric mapping of land cover and forest types in Central Africa using SENTINEL images. This session was organized by the project "Strengthening and institutionalization of the Central African Forest Observatory" (RIOFAC), an activity that falls within the framework of support to OFAC.
During this session, which took place in the OSFAC offices, invited experts from the Forest Inventory and Management Directorate (DIAF) were able to contribute toward improving the mapping product being produced. For more than five days, these experts worked on the product across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) by identifying poorly classified areas based on an annual Sentinel-2 composite and using very high-resolution images from Google Earth.
Previously, the experts were familiarized with the visual interpretation key matching forest types and typology. The harmonized regional typology of forest types has been developed since 2018 thanks to several regional workshops that brought together national experts from the COMIFAC zone. This typology was built from the Land Cover Classification System. Following the working session, the classes identified as poorly mapped by the experts were then improved upon by members of the organizing team.
The last step to be taken to know the exactness of the map will be a validation of the mapping product of forest types which could be done by confronting this map to the data of the national forest inventory of the DRC and to samples photo-interpreted by the experts. This working session obviously showed how essential it is to collaborate with national experts in order to have a quality product that meets the expectations of beneficiary countries.
Central Africa currently has more than 200 protected areas covering a total of 800 000 km², or twice the size of Cameroon. Across the 10 countries of the region, the number and size of protected areas have doubled in the last 20 years. According to the new report entitled “State of protected areas in Central Africa: 2020”, Central Africa is close to meeting the international targets for protected areas. However, these areas are often poorly run and their management could be improved. In the interests of sustainable development, the authors of the report insist on the importance of protecting this natural capital, which will, in return, contribute to the socio-economic development of the region.
To read the full press release, click here
The Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Programme (BIOPAMA) is delighted to present the latest version of the Integrated Management Effectiveness Tool (IMET). Building on lessons learned from users on the ground in sites around the world, this new 2.2 release offers many new features to improve assessments and to increase the focus on achieving better outcomes for protected areas. IMET is a fully-featured, in-depth decision support tool for evaluation of both marine and terrestrial protected areas, helping protected area managers understand how to get the best results, based on an analytical approach. Join us on 15 July for this one-hour webinar to learn more about IMET, including its installation and use.
Sustainably managing protected areas requires knowledge about their situation and the problems they face. With this objective, the Central African Forests Observatory (OFAC) presents an updated assessment of the state of protected areas in the ten member countries of the Central African Forests Commission (COMIFAC).
Written by a group of experts specializing in conservation in Central Africa, with the financial support of the Organization of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OEACP) and the European Union (EU) through the BIOPAMA program and the RIOFAC project, as well as GIZ, the book “The State of Central Africa’s Protected Areas 2020” follows a first edition published in 2015, which has now become the flagship publication on protected areas in the sub-region.
The 2020 edition not only provides updated data, but it also gives more in-depth information on pressing issues such as transhumance, human-wildlife conflicts, and extractive industries. This publication is a flagship product of the Observatory for Biodiversity and Protected Areas of the BIOPAMA program, hosted by OFAC-COMIFAC in Central Africa.
With the aim of presenting the main findings to policymakers, journalists, current and future donors, academics, civil society organizations and other actors in the conservation and development sectors, OFAC is organizing an online public event to launch the publication. It will be followed by a press briefing addressed to the media.
Date and time: June 29, 2021, 10:00 am-11:30am Yaoundé time
Location: Online (Zoom)
Languages: French / English (simultaneous translation)
Register here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_-O2QJPBgQQmVd69JBFu5Fw
This study aims to evaluate the IFL concept and suggest additional or complementary paths for its implementation in the Central African region. Based on an extensive scientific literature review on IFLs and Central African forest management, this paper addresses the three following questions: (1) How did different concepts proposed for identifying wild/intact areas evolve over time? (2)What are the advantages and the drawbacks of the IFL method for identifying priority areas for conservation in Central Africa? (3) Are there specific constraints regarding the implementation of the IFL concept (as currently defined and identified) in Central Africa and how could they be overcome? Read more
Larger than Elephants - Regional Analysis sets out the scale of the crisis that Africa faces due to the threat to ecosystems, natural resources and wildlife. It examines lessons learnt from past conservation efforts and identifies priority areas for future action. It has been produced in close concertation with the conservation community and Africa specialists. This full Regional Analysis follows a Synthesis report published in 2015. Download the report
The Presidents of Indonesia, the European Commission and the European Council today confirmed that Indonesia has met the final major requirement of its Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) with the EU and is on course to become the world’s first country to issue FLEGT licences.
Read more on: http://www.flegt.org/flegt-new-era
The Biodiversity and Protected Areas Management Programme (BIOPAMA), has launched a regional Observatory for biodiversity and protected areas in Central Africa, with OFAC (Observatory for Central African Forests) as the host organisation, based in Yaounde, Cameroon. More on:
- IUCN: http://www.iucn.org/fr/propos/
union/secretariat/bureaux/ paco/programmes/ap/ observatoire_regional_pour_ les_ap_et_la_biodiversite_en_ afrique_centrale/atelier_de_ lancement_de_l_observatoire/
- BIOPAMA: http://www.biopama.org/learn_
more/?18461/Launch-of- Regional-Observatory-for- Biodiversity-and-Protected- Areas-in-Central-Africa
WRI has just launched the Interactive Forest Atlas of Equatorial Guinea. It was the last missing element of the atlases of the Congo Basin countries.The first Forest Atlas was released in 2005 for Cameroon, and since then
Atlases have been developed for all of the countries in the Congo
Basin. These Atlases are the product of a partnership between the World
Resources Institute and national governments, in collaboration with the
private sector, international donor agencies, and civil society groups.
Disponible sur http://www.wri.org/our-work/project/congo-basin-forest-atlases#project-tabs
The Bristish journal "Philosophical Transactions of the
Royal Society" has published a special issue on ‘Change in African
rainforests: past, present and future’ with many open access articles. The table
of contents and the abstracts re available on http://rstb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/368/1625.toc
This event, organised by OFAC, will detail the main conclusions of the recently published report “State of the Congo Basin Forests 2010” in five domains affecting the conservation of the biodiversity in the Congo Basin and presented by various partners involved in OFAC :
Forest-cover change (EC Joint Research Centre)
Non-timber Forest Products and fuel wood (CIFOR)
Bush meat consumption (TRAFFIC project by WWF)
Landscape-level management (CARPE program of USAid).
A new map viewer is available on the OFAC web site and allows you for displaying basic layers (political, vegetation, satellite images, roadmap...) and data collected by OFAC (concessions, protected areas, landcspae...).
On Thursday 1st March, the President and the executive secretariat of the COMIFAC will present officially the State of the Forests 2010 at the Congo Basin Forest Partnership meeting. Complete version available.
Three important meetings are organised in Douala at the hotel Sawa by COMIFAC and Congo Basin Forest Partnership.
27-28 Feb Needs in forestry research (co-organised with CIRAD, CIFOR and IRD)
29 Feb Day on forest governance in Congo Basin
1-2 March Meeting of the Congo Basin Forests Partnership
More details on http://ccr-rac.pfbc-cbfp.org/home.html
The Oxford Centre for Tropical Forests is hosting a conference that provides a multidisciplinary examination of the fate of African tropical forests in the 21st century. The aim of the meeting is to synthesise a scientific and authoritative summary of scientific insights into the future of African tropical forests, which will then be disseminated to a wider audience as an evidence base to inform decision-making.
All the presentations (slides and podcast) are available on http://www.eci.ox.ac.uk/africa/programme.php
The French development agency AFD incollaboration with Astrium have
announced at the Planet Action REDD+ workshop that the entire SPOT
satellite image archive for the Congo Basin (over 2 million km2) is
available online for approved REDD projects through an online portal:
This includes multiple time coverages of SPOT 1-5, (1998 to today) for forest cover mapping and change, with resolutions ranging from 2.5 to 20m.
OFAC, in strong collaboration with the project Forest Tranparency Initiative of the World Resource Institute, and national forest services, have collected many indicators by individual logging concession. These indicators are structured by (i) general information, (ii) management process, (iii) social aspects, (iv) environmental aspects. Visit the above-mentioned page, select a country and a concession and access all the detailed information. Maps will be developed in a near future.
Professor Wangari Muta Maathai, Congo Basin Roving Ambassador and 2004 Nobel Peace Price Winner died last 25 September 2011 in a hospital in Nairobi. Full of courage and inspiration, she shall always be remembered by the COMIFAC people area for her contribution in favour of the conservation, the sustainable management and development of Central African forest ecosystems. During a side-event in the Conference of Parties in Copenhagen in 2009, she made us the surprise to comment very positively the session we just presented (presentations available on http://www.observatoire-comifac.net/documents.php)
This atlas was produced as a part of the OSFAC (Observatoire Satellital des Forêts d'Afrique Centrale) initiative “Monitoring the forests of Central Africa using remotely sensed data sets” (FACET in French). FACET is led by OSFAC in collaboration with South Dakota State University and the University of Maryland, and supported by USAID CARPE. Additional support was provided by World Resources Institute. More about...
This report was prepared as a background document for the Summit of the Three Rainforest Basins, taking place in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo, on 31 May-3 June 2011. It draws on work undertaken by the FAO Forestry Department and the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), two international organizations at the forefront of providing information on these forests and promoting their sustainable management. Downloadable in...
The main objective of this workshop is to give the opportunity to the various stakeholders of the forest sector in Congo Basin to review the content and to validate the report on the State of the Forests 2010. A secondary objective is to define the table of contects of the State of the Forests 2012.
This report seeks to answer whether timber concessions allocated, among others, in Central Africa can be considered as part of the large-scale land acquisition (LSLA) process that is currently the subject of international debate, mainly targeting arable lands. It suggests also that the current forest concession system in Africa is declining due to several factors. This report is on line on RRI website: http://www.rightsandresources.org/publication_details.php?publicationID=2111
The Forest management module was modified and contains more synthesis information (in French only for the moment). Visit the page http://www.observatoire-comifac.net/pages/forestManagement.php
The COP-16 in Cancun adopted a decision (Long Term Activity Working Group) with very important articles on REDD process. (articles 68 to 79). Downloadable document http://unfccc.int/files/meetings/cop_16/application/pdf/cop16_lca.pdf