University of California and Vox Media's Climate Lab Series Featuring Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan Returns with Three New Episodes TodayExamining the impacts of online shopping, packaging and dietary…
University of California and Vox Media’s Climate Lab Series Featuring Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan Returns with Three New Episodes Today

Examining the impacts of online shopping, packaging and dietary choices, the new episodes are perfectly timed for the holiday season  

Arlington, Va. (November 17, 2017) –  Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan hosts three more episodes of Climate Lab, the innovative video series produced by University of California (UC) which seeks to change the way people communicate and think about global climate change. The first new episode debuts on Vox.com today and on UC Climate Lab.

The initial six episodes of the series released last Spring were hosted by Sanjayan. They have been viewed more than 12 million times on YouTube and continue to be shared widely on social media.

The latest episode, “The environmental cost of free two-day shipping,” arrives just in time for the holiday shopping season. Sanjayan engages leading UC engineers on the environmental impact of online shopping, breaking down how individuals and companies can make their shopping habits more sustainable.

“Most doom and gloom climate change messaging actually has the opposite of its intended effect – it turns people off,” said Sanjayan. “This series is different because it focuses on what messages and strategies are actually proven to galvanize corporate and consumer behavior on a scale large enough to make a real difference.”

Two more episodes will go live in December and January. As before, the series will feature conversations with UC scientists, researchers and sustainability experts about everything from making environmentally-friendly dietary choices to cutting down on packaging waste.

“UC’s pioneering climate science and research have put us on the forefront of the fight against global warming going back decades,” said UC President Janet Napolitano. “But we know that to break through and to continue to make progress, we need to explain in an approachable and engaging way how individuals and institutions can make smart, research-tested decisions to reduce their impact on the planet.”

Previous episodes of Climate Lab, also hosted by Sanjayan, examined the psychology of climate change, the environmental impact of smartphones and food waste, and the evolution of nuclear energy technology, among other topics, with appearances by Lauren Singer of Trash Is For Tossers, the chair of the California Air Resources Board Mary Nichols, political commentator Van Jones and more.

Every Climate Lab episode can be found on UC’s Climate Lab website along with infographics, quizzes and bonus content, and on Vox’s YouTube channel.

The Climate Lab series is aligned closely with Napolitano’s Carbon Neutrality Initiative, in which UC has committed to becoming carbon neutral in its operations by 2025. For more information UC’s carbon neutrality and sustainability efforts, visit http://ucop.edu/sustainability/.

Dr. M. Sanjayan is the CEO of Conservation International, a global nonprofit that uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all.

About the University of California
The University of California is a pioneer on climate research​​, renewable energy and environmental sustainability. UC is dedicated to providing scalable solutions to help California, and the world bend the curve on climate change. UC research is also paving the way for the university to meet its goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2025.

About Conservation International
Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

​Arlington, Va. (November 16, 2017) – Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan made the following statement about the U.S. permitting the import of elephant trophies from Zimbabwe and Zambia: Reports…
​Arlington, Va. (November 16, 2017) – Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan made the following statement about the U.S. permitting the import of elephant trophies from Zimbabwe and Zambia:

Reports that the Trump Administration intends to revoke bans on the import of sport-hunted elephant trophies from Zimbabwe and Zambia is highly disturbing. This is the wrong move at the wrong time for protecting Africa’s wildlife. It is baffling that this action would be a priority at this time.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must administer the Endangered Species Act based on sound science. The original ban was enacted based on detailed findings on the condition of elephant populations on the ground, and it strains credulity to suggest that local science-based factors have been met to justify this change. What’s more, this move sends a dangerous signal to poachers and to our allies about the commitment of the United States to ending the trade in ivory and endangered animal products.

Illegal ivory trade has been shown to be linked to trans-boundary criminal syndicates and terror networks, and the world has taken meaningful strides in recent years to save African elephants from poaching. In recent months, China and the United Kingdom — two of the world’s largest ivory importers — have announced plans to close their markets. Meanwhile, countries across Africa — from Gabon to Botswana — have committed to closing their own ivory markets and have taken steps to reduce or eliminate their ivory stockpiles.

​The United States has been a strong leader and moral authority on shutting down the trafficking of ivory. Though the United States ivory ban remains in effect, the Trump Administration is moving in the wrong direction with this new trophy exemption. I urge the Trump Administration to reconsider this decision with full public comment and participation.

About Conservation International
Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

​Bonn, Germany (November 6, 2017) – Conservation International joins leaders across the climate movement at COP 23, the annual United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Bonn, Germany,…
​Bonn, Germany (November 6, 2017) – Conservation International joins leaders across the climate movement at COP 23, the annual United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in Bonn, Germany, November 6 – 17. Participating nations will meet to advance the goals of the Paris Agreement and achieve progress on its implementation guidelines. The negotiation session is hosted by the Government of Fiji, the first time a Pacific Island country has led these negotiations.

Nature-based solutions to climate change are essential strategies for meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement. These climate solutions include: reducing deforestation, oceans and island-scale resilience, tropical reforestation, mangrove restoration, ecosystem-based adaptation, coastal carbon management, and climate-resilient agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries. In anticipation of negotiations at COP 23, Conservation International calls on countries to: expand use of nature-based solutions in national climate action, include natural climate solutions as part of market-based mechanisms, and Incorporate the traditional knowledge of indigenous peoples in climate decisions and actions.

Conservation International’s oceans work will take center stage at several side events throughout the conference, highlighting key successes in the Pacific, a nod to the host of this year’s negotiations. Conservation International will also highlight strategic collaborations with countries and non-state actors on protecting ocean health and coastal ecosystems through conservation and sustainable management.

“Fiji and other Pacific Island nations are sharing here at COP23 the stark reality affecting indigenous people living off or near oceans today,” said Shyla Raghav, Climate Lead, Conservation International. “Sea level rise, ocean acidification among others are shifting the Pacific Islands’ way of life. Conservation International has been active in collaboration with Fiji, the Cook Islands, Samoa and other island nations on adapting to climate change impacts. Partners in the Paris climate accord are needed to ramp up action now on commitments and contribute to nature-based solutions preventing climate refugees from all island nations.” 

To request media interviews in Bonn, please contact Kipp Lanham at klanham@conservation.org.

About Conservation International
Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Los Angeles, CA (Nov. 3, 2017) - Conservation International held its 30th Anniversary Dinner in Los Angeles on Thursday, November 2. Conservation International awarded actor and environmentalist Harrison Ford with…

Los Angeles, CA (Nov. 3, 2017) – Conservation International held its 30th Anniversary Dinner in Los Angeles on Thursday, November 2. Conservation International awarded actor and environmentalist Harrison Ford with its prestigious Founders’ Award. SC Johnson and Rock in Rio were each awarded Conservation International’s Global Conservation Hero Award.

The evening’s theme of No Forest, No Future highlighted the importance of protecting one of the planet’s most valuable ecosystems: tropical forests and particularly the Amazon. A longtime supporter of Conservation International, Harrison Ford has served on its board of directors for more than 25 years and has been instrumental in its work to protect forests and nature around the world.

“We face an unprecedented moment in this country. Today’s greatest threat is not climate change, not pollution, not famine, not flood, or fire. It’s that we’ve got people in charge of important things who don’t believe in science,” said Ford. “People who for their own political or economic self-interest denigrate or belittle sound scientific understanding of the causes and effects of human pressure on the environment. This is the crisis to which all others belong, and addressing it has got to be the core of our work.”

“Harrison Ford’s influence can be felt in everything CI says and in everything we do. He has touched every aspect of his work. In many ways, we can say that he is our work,” said Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan.

SC Johnson and Rock in Rio each received Conservation International’s Global Conservation Hero award. Conservation International presents this award to remarkable individuals and organizations whose environmental commitment and actions have had a transformative impact for the good of the planet and its people. Fisk Johnson, chairman and CEO of SC Johnson, and Luis Justo, CEO of Rock in Rio, accepted the awards on behalf of their organizations.

Former UN Climate Chief and Conservation International’s Distinguished Lui-Walton Fellow Christiana Figueres spoke about the importance of the evening’s theme, No Forest, No Future, in the global effort to address climate change.

About Conservation International

Conservation International uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, Conservation International works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow Conservation International’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

​​Arlington, Va. (October 27, 2017) – A new study funded by Conservation International (CI) finds that endangered lemurs are living among cocoa and vanilla farms in Madagascar. With much of…
​​Arlington, Va. (October 27, 2017) – A new study funded by Conservation International (CI) finds that endangered lemurs are living among cocoa and vanilla farms in Madagascar. With much of the country’s natural forest degraded, the report suggests that well-managed farms could serve as a suitable habitat for wildlife.

Using camera traps and night surveys to identify lemur calls, scientists from the Bristol Zoological Society and the University of West England found five lemur species – three of which are endangered – moving, resting and grooming among the branches of cacao trees on 61 farms that supply Madécasse Chocolate & Vanilla, a direct-trade company that produces chocolate from bean to bar entirely in Madagascar. Researchers also found five species on vanilla farms that supply GIE Sahanala, a Fair Trade and organic exporter of vanilla and cashew nuts.

“There is a lot of evidence of the value of shade-grown coffee for bird conservation, but this is the first study we have that shows the role that cocoa and vanilla farms can play as habitat for lemur species,” explained Curan Bonham, Director of Project Monitoring and Evaluation and the Verde Ventures Program at CI. “This research underscores the importance of and need for greater investment to promote sustainable production systems as part of a holistic landscape conservation strategy.”

Dr. Sam Cotton, one of two scientists from the Bristol Zoological Society in the study, shared that they found the highest number of species in those vanilla farms grown close to areas of natural forest and amongst natural vegetation.

“These are the first documented observations of lemurs living in vanilla farms, and are extraordinary, unexpected and highly encouraging,” Cotton said. “Appropriately managed and located vanilla farms may therefore act as viable habitats for many species, including lemurs.”

Dr. Amanda Webber, the second scientist in the study from Bristol Zoological Society added, “The findings are exciting as they suggest that these highly threatened animals can live in human-dominated areas and cacao could be an example of a crop that, when grown sustainably, has the potential to benefit wildlife and people.”

Cacao, the plant from which chocolate is produced, is a vital commercial crop for people living in Madagascar.

“Poverty is the root cause of habitat destruction in Madagascar,” explained Tim McCollum, Founder and CEO of Madécasse Chocolate & Vanilla. “Any serious conservation needs to solve poverty at the village level. This research is the first step in linking lemur preservation and renewable income generation for cacao and vanilla farmers. The most exciting thing is that it can be scaled.”

About Conservation International
Conservation International (CI) uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, CI works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow CI’s work   on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

About Bristol Zoological Society
Bristol Zoo is involved with more than 100 coordinated breeding programs for threatened wildlife species. It employs over 150 full and part-time staff to care for the animals and run a successful visitor attraction to support its conservation and education work. Bristol Zoo supports – through finance and skill sharing – 15 projects in the UK and abroad that conserve and protect some of the world’s most endangered species. In 2010 Bristol Zoo Gardens set up a Conservation Fund to raise vital funds to help care for threatened animals and plants – both in the Zoo and through the conservation work we do in the UK and around the world. Bristol Zoo Gardens is a member of the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

About Madécasse
The Madécasse Chocolate & Vanilla journey started as Peace Corps volunteers, teaching English in Madagascar. They fell in love with the country and the people and wanted to do more, so they started making chocolate in Madagascar. They did this because they believe that two things are off in the chocolate industry. (1) The overwhelming majority of chocolate on the shelf tastes the same. Madécasse thinks everyone deserves a better bar of chocolate and they’re on a mission to make that happen. They use a different type of cocoa, and you can actually taste the difference. (2) There is a lack of transparency in the industry, due to the thousands of miles and layers of middlemen that separate the farmers growing cocoa from the people eating chocolate. They’ve integrated themselves into some of the poorest communities and most challenging work environments in the world, to buy cocoa directly from farmers. Farmers earn more.  Consumers get a better bar of chocolate. Learn more about Madécasse and their journey on their WebsiteInstagramFacebook and Twitter.

​CI's Annual Gala Will Also Honor SC Johnson and Rock In Rio, Feature Diplomatic Leader Christiana Figueres and Top-Ranked Brazilian Chef Alex AltaLos Angeles, Calif. (October 19, 2017) – Conservation…
​CI’s Annual Gala Will Also Honor SC Johnson and Rock In Rio, Feature Diplomatic Leader Christiana Figueres and Top-Ranked Brazilian Chef Alex Alta

Los Angeles, Calif. (October 19, 2017) – Conservation International (CI) will award Harrison Ford with its prestigious Founders’ Award at its 30th anniversary dinner that will take place at 3Labs in Culver City on Nov. 2. Ford is a longtime environmental advocate and has served on CI’s board of directors for more than 25 years.

CI will also honor two recipients with its annual Conservation Hero Award – SC Johnson & Son, Inc. (SC Johnson) and Rock in Rio. SC Johnson is a founding member of Conservation International’s Team Earth, a worldwide sustainability effort uniting businesses, nonprofit organizations, experts and individuals to address the most pressing environmental issues. Rock in Rio is partnering with CI on the largest tropical reforestation effort in the world – a multimillion dollar, 6-year project that will restore 73 million trees in the Brazilian Amazonia region by 2023, spanning 30,000 hectares of land, equivalent to the size of 30,000 soccer fields and nearly 70,000 acres.

The CEOs of both organizations, H. Fisk Johnson of SC Johnson and Luis Justo of Rock in Rio, will accept the award on behalf on their organizations.

The special evening will also include featured speaker and internationally-recognized, diplomatic leader Christiana Figueres, a former executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and a Lui-Walton In​novators Distinguished Fellow. Top-ranked Brazilian Chef Alex Alta, one of TIME Magazine’s 100 most influential people, will also create a one-of-a-kind dish for the evening. 

About Conservation International
Conservation International (CI) uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, CI works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow CI’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

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Maun, Botswana (October 13, 2017) – Ministers from 12 African countries announced today a new commitment to sustainability during a meeting marking the fifth anniversary of the Gaborone Declaration for…
Maun, Botswana (October 13, 2017) – Ministers from 12 African countries announced today a new commitment to sustainability during a meeting marking the fifth anniversary of the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa (GDSA). The meeting also served to formally welcome Madagascar as a new signatory to the GDSA.

The GDSA is an African-led initiative that puts sustainability at the forefront of investment and economic development. Building on its progress over the last five years, a new Ministers’ Statement announced yesterday calls for a renewed commitment to incorporating the value of nature in economic and social development decisions. Highlights include:

• Madagascar officially joined the GDSA, bringing the total to 11 countries
• New governance framework, including a new Forum of Ministers that will further the work of the GDSA by ensuring close links among the GDSA countries in their move towards sustainability. Also, agreed to were joining guidelines, which now allow for a mechanism by which new countries can join the GDSA.
• Re-affirmation of the 11-country strong GDSA to the vision of an Africa where nature is managed sustainably to ensure human well-being, in accordance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Agreement

“As the five-year progress reports show, we are collectively on the right track, but we need to scale up our efforts,” said Lt-Gen Dr. Seretse Khama Ian Khama President of the Republic of Botswana and and Chairman of the GDSA, at the opening of the two-day ministerial meeting. Urging the attendees to be ambassadors of the GDSA, the President described his hope that the GDSA would expand to more nations and non-State partners in the next five years. “The vision of the GDSA is to ensure that the nature on which we depend for our wellbeing is valued, respected, and managed, not just for our generation but for future generations as well.”

“In supporting the continued success of the GDSA, the Government of Botswana will review its conservation funding componenets towards availing further funding for GDSA activities,” said Hon. Tshekedi Khama, Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Government of Botswana at the opening plenary. He further noted that, in the future, the GDSA, “will tighten the bonds between member countries as we work together, for our common purpose and vision.”

The opening plenary was addressed by Mr. Erik Solheim, Executive Director of UN Environment. Mr. Solheim discussed future areas of cooperation between UN Environment, Government of Botswana, and the GDSA and encouraged Africa to look at ways in which tourism and renewable energy could be used in the continent’s development.

Michael O’Brien-Onyeka, Senior Vice President, Africa Field Division at Conservation International said,”Conservation International is grateful for the opportunity to work with the Government of Botswana and the GDSA member countries in organizing the Secretariat and in helping the countries progress towards the visionary goals of the GDSA.”

Ruud Jansen, Executive Secretary of the GDSA said,”The GDSA is as valid today as it was in 2012. The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement have given the Declaration added value and urgency. We look forward to welcoming the member countries to Botswana to deliberate on how to take this action platform into the future.”

About the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa (GDSA)
Initiated as a regional action platform in May 2012 by 10 African countries (Botswana, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Namibia, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, and South Africa), the GDSA approaches sustainability through incorporating the value of natural capital in public and private policy decision-making, generating data, sharing best practices, and building capacity to support policy networks as well as pursuing inclusive sustainable production in such areas as agriculture, fisheries, and extractive industries.

Botswana is the designated Secretariat for the GDSA, with the President of Botswana – Lieutenant General Dr. Seretse Khama Ian Khama as Chair. In December 2014, the Government of Botswana delegated the functions of the Secretariat to Conservation International (CI) until December 2018.

A number of regional and global platforms have endorsed the GDSA. These includes the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN), the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA), and  the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. 

For an interview, media should contact Kennedy Arthur Wekesa (Regional Communications Manager), CI Africa Field Division, kwekesa@conservation.org​, +254704382089​​​.

About Conservation International
Conservation International (CI) uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, CI works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow CI’s work on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

​Arlington, Va. (October 9, 2017) – Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan made the following statement today on the Trump Administration's proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan:Today's announcement by…
​Arlington, Va. (October 9, 2017) – Conservation International CEO Dr. M. Sanjayan made the following statement today on the Trump Administration’s proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan:

Today’s announcement by the Trump Administration puts the United States government further out of step with the growing and irreversible global momentum to address climate change.
American ingenuity and industry are continuing to lead efforts to take the U.S. into a prosperous, clean-energy future. Already entrepreneurs, communities, cities, states and businesses are making historic commitments to climate action. The one missing part is ending the destruction of forests, which results in as much carbon pollution as all cars and trucks on Earth and yet is generally overlooked as a solution. Investing in the carbon stored and captured in forests and scaling up clean technologies is far better for our future than investing in dirty emissions from a last-century fuel.
Together, we can meet America’s commitments to the Paris Agreement with or without the Trump Administration, but only if we stop the destruction of our natural world.
About Conservation International
Conservation International (CI) uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, CI works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow CI’s work on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

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​Arlington, Va. (October 6, 2017) – Today Conservation International (CI) announced its commitments to improve the health of the world's oceans at the fourth annual Our Ocean Conference in Valletta,…
​Arlington, Va. (October 6, 2017) – Today Conservation International (CI) announced its commitments to improve the health of the world’s oceans at the fourth annual Our Ocean Conference in Valletta, Malta. Hosted by the European Union, the global conference brings together over 700 world leaders, civil society groups and the private sector.

“Oceans sustain all life on this planet. Habitat destruction, overfishing, pollution and climate change are all impacting the food, livelihoods and climate protections we normally get from a healthy ocean,” said Aulani Wilhelm, Senior Vice President, Center for Oceans at CI. “There is a gathering momentum here to mitigate these impacts for the future of our oceans, and that takes courageous action and partnerships invested in bold actions and long-term solutions.”

CI is committing to five new initiatives featuring financing solutions, corporate engagements and new technologies:

  • The Blue Accelerator Fund will support the development of social enterprises, particularly in fisheries, aquaculture (fish farming) and marine tourism, by providing critical bridge financing and linking enterprises with investors, technical expertise and markets for sustainable products and services.
  • The Global Mangrove Alliance (in partnership with the World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, International Union for Conservation of Nature and Wetlands International) aims to increase mangrove habitat globally by 20 percent.
  • CI and the Natural Capital Coalition are teaming up to produce a Natural Capital Protocol for Oceans, to help businesses understand whether and how their commercial success is dependent upon healthy ocean resources, and to recommend ways to respond to the risks and opportunities identified.
  • A Green-Gray partnership with Bechtel Corporation will combine ‘green’ natural infrastructure (e.g. mangroves) with ‘grey’ infrastructure (e.g. seawalls) to protect vulnerable coastlines from extreme weather and erosion.
  • CI has partnered with the Costa Rican government and Satellite Applications Catapult / OceanMind to monitor and combat illegal fishing across Costa Rica’s waters using cutting-edge satellite technology.

CI has expertise in integrated management of the ocean from creating and fulfilling the potential of large marine protected areas, improving the health and sustainability of fish stocks and developing data-driven decision tools like the Ocean Health Index among others.

Since its inception in 2014 as an initiative started by former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, the Our Ocean Conference has gathered international leaders, civil society groups and private sector companies and organizations with a collective aim of saving the world’s seas.

About Conservation International
Conservation International (CI) uses science, policy and partnerships to protect the nature people rely on for food, fresh water and livelihoods. Founded in 1987, CI works in more than 30 countries on six continents to ensure a healthy, prosperous planet that supports us all. Learn more about CI and its groundbreaking “Nature Is Speaking” campaign, and follow CI’s work on FacebookTwitterInstagram and YouTube.

​GABORONE, BOTSWANA: Ministers from 12 countries who are signatories to the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa (GDSA) will convene in Maun, Botswana from October 11th to the 13th to…
​GABORONE, BOTSWANA: Ministers from 12 countries who are signatories to the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa (GDSA) will convene in Maun, Botswana from October 11th to the 13th to attend the Fifth Anniversary Celebration and the Forum of Minister’s Conference on the Gaborone Declation for Sustainability in Africa at Cresta Maun. The Ministers Forum will be opened officially by His Excellency the President of the Rebublic of Botswana Lieutenant General Dr. Seretse Khama Ian Khama who is expected to address GDSA Member States and encourage their renewed commitment to incorporate value of nature in economic and social development decisions.

The Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa culminated from the 2012 Summit for Sustainability in Africa, held in Gaborone. At this summit 10 countries reaffirmed their commitment to implement all conventions and declarations that promote Sustainable Development. Those 10 signatories are: Botswana, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa and Tanzania.

The GDSA Ministers Forum – a transformative platform for achieving sustainable development – will be meeting to draw up a new five-year strategy to reinforce sustainability and natural capital as the centre piece of economic planning and development across member states. The ministers will also review the progress made since the Gaborone Declaration was signed and also assess governance protocols and guidelines for new members to join the GDSA. Additionally, the meeting will serve to formally welcome Madagascar and Uganda as two new signatories to the GDSA.

The gathering also marks 5 years after the establishment of the GDSA, and is inspired by the recognition of the opportunities, risks and rewards that come with increased investment and commitment to sustainable management of Africa’s rich natural capital.

Ruud Jansen, Executive Secretary of the GDSA said, “The GDSA is as valid today as it was in 2012. The Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris Agreement have given the Declaration added value and urgency. We look forward to welcoming the member countries to Botswana to deliberate on how to take this action platform into the future.”

Michael O’Brien-Onyeka, Senior Vice President, Africa Field Division at Conservation International said “Conservation International is grateful for the opportunity to work with the Government of Botswana and the GDSA member countries in organizing the Secretariat and in helping the countries progress towards the visionary goals of the GDSA, especially in such areas as ecosystem mapping, payment for ecosystem services, REDD+ activities and conservation agreements.”

Note to Editors:

About the Gaborone Declaration for Sustainability in Africa (GDSA): Initiated as a regional action platform in May 2012 by 10 African countries (Botswana, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Namibia, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, and South Africa), the GDSA approaches sustainability through incorporating the value of natural capital in public and private policy decision-making, generating data, sharing best practices, and building capacity to support policy networks as well as pursuing inclusive sustainable production in such areas as agriculture, fisheries, and extractive industries.

Botswana is the designated Secretariat for the GDSA, with the President of Botswana – Lieutenant General Dr. Seretse Khama Ian Khama as Chair. In December 2014, the Government of Botswana delegated the functions of the Secretariat to Conservation International (CI) until December 2018.

A number of regional and global platforms have endorsed the GDSA. These includes the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN), the United Nations Environmental Assembly (UNEA), and the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
                                         
Important Links and Contacts:

  • GDSA Website: http://www.gaboronedeclaration.com
  • Facebook: www.facebook.com/GaboroneDeclaration
  • Twitter:  @ConservationOrg, @africa_ci, @BWGovernment
  • Join the conversation: #SustainAfrica #GaboroneDeclaration
  • Photos: available upon request
  • About the Government of the Republic of Botswana: www.gov.bw
  • About Conservation International (CI): www.conservation.org
  • Press inquiries, please contact:
    • For the Government of Botswana: MENT_PR@GOV.BW
    • For the GDSA Secretariat: Ruud Jansen (GDSA Executive Secretary), rjansen@conservation.org, +267 71 632 563
    • For Conservation International: Jenny Parker McCloskey (VP Media), jparker@conservation.org, +1-917-763-3263
  • Journalists Requesting Credentials:
    • All press must be approved by the Government of Botswana to attend the meeting. To apply for press access, please contact MENT-PR@gov.bw