The Congo Forest

The vast forest of the Congo Basin is the second largest tropical rainforest on earth and the lungs of Africa. Its incredibly rich and diverse ecosystem provides food, fresh water, shelter and medicine for tens of millions of people, and is home to many critically endangered species including forest elephants, gorillas, bonobos and okapis. Of the hundreds of mammal species discovered there so far, 39 are found nowhere else on Earth, and of its estimated 10,000 plant species, 3,300 are unique to the region.

The rainforest supports an astonishing range of life, within its teeming rivers, swamps and savannahs. But it also helps to sustain life across the whole planet. An estimated 8% of the earth’s carbon that is stored in living forests worldwide is stored in the forests of the DRC, making the country the fourth largest carbon reservoir in the world. The Congo Basin rainforest plays a critical role in regulating the global climate and halting runaway climate change, for the benefit of the entire biosphere.

But the forest, and the people and animals that depend upon it, are under threat as the unquenchable global thirst for natural resources, crops and foodstuffs means African lands are, more than ever, a target for investors. The solutions to these threats lie firmly with those who live there.

The latest updates

 

Carving up the Congo - Executive Summary

Publication | 11 April, 2007 at 2:00

Executive Sumary of 'Carving up the Congo'.

Carving Up The Congo - Part 4

Publication | 11 April, 2007 at 2:00

Part 4

Greenpeace report on CIB logging operation in Congo-Brazzaville

Publication | 17 August, 2005 at 2:00

As a part of its global forest campaign, Greenpeace is increasing its activities in the Congo Basin, the 2nd largest rainforest area in the world. The logging (and related commercial poaching) of the remaining intact areas of these rainforests is...

Role of the African timber trade in the creation of conflict and poverty

Publication | 4 February, 2003 at 1:00

A call for action to stop the role of the timber trade in fuelling war economies. Tropical timber is a high value product which is easily exploitable and readily marketable. With relatively low investments, logging can quickly generate big...

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