WWF’s work in the Luki Biosphere Reserve in the Bas-Congo Province, in the far southwest of DRC, has highlighted the links between conserving natural resources and improving the living conditions of the people around the reserve.
Due to its large population and close economic ties with Kinshasa, Bas-Congo is one of the provinces where human impact on the natural environment is highest. Reconciling development objectives and the protection of natural resources is crucial and urgent.
Our work in Luki suggests that local people are not a problem or an obstacle to conservation, but rather part of the solution. The Luki Biosphere Reserve is small and accessible, so it’s a good site for piloting projects that can be replicated in other protected areas in DRC.
The Bas Congo Programme has two projects:
1. PASAGAR Project, which focuses mainly on alternative activities to the exploitation of natural resources, thus contributing to greater food security;
2. Luki REDD+ Pilot project, which focuses on REDD+ readiness.