Beyond National Parks

“We must protect 50% of the world’s lands and seas, 30% of which needs to be done by 2030”


This was the gist of the IUCN’s Motion 101 adopted on September 10th in Marseille France, a landmark occasion that recognized that 50% of the world’s lands and seas need to be protected for the sake of continued existence on earth and 30% of this needs to be done by 2030.

This very conclusion is at the heart of what Conserve believes, that nature is our best long-term investment for a healthier, happier world. We are also excited that with the swell in support and understanding across a multitude of sectors and governments, that this is imminently achievable – given the requisite effort, funding, and collaboration.



But the victory is not ours yet as many key conservation areas outside national parks are degazetted or abandoned for reasons varying from lack of financing or effective management, and the retraction of industries like hunting that have often occupied these areas historically. Replacing wildlife in an area where it has been hunted or poached out is often just a matter of translocating new herds; but once habitat destruction takes its toll, the ecosystems are lost in that pristine form forever.




Very few in the fight for the conservation of Africa, are putting up their hands to secure, protect and eventually expand the frontiers of key conservation areas beyond national parks often because these landscapes are designated for sustainable use which carries a stigma. But it is this exact feature that we see as an incredible opportunity. Conservation as a land use has infinite possibilities when it comes to nature-based economies. Reliable revenue generating activities that support local livelihoods and are in favor of the environment are exactly what we’re pursuing in our quest. Opportunities exist around carbon sequestration, biodiversity bonds, or sustainable fishing or timber harvesting and of course, also the more tried-and-tested ecotourism options. Development and environmental protection don’t have to be mutually exclusive objectives, rather if done consciously and in consultation with the indigenous communities living in proximity to vast tracts of wilderness, they can in fact, make the best of bedfellows.



Beyond the borders of the areas where Conserve is taking on direct management responsibility, we are also seeking to grow relationships and partnerships with companies and corporations that do business in Africa with the mission of creating harmony between business and the environment (previously plagued by frequently opposing agendas). This is an exciting new chapter that promises even more sustainable development in Africa that delivers benefits for her people and wildlife across landscape-scale areas.



Our goal is to protect 25 million acres of wild Africa by 2030, places which are not currently receiving the best protection possible, as our contribution to Motion 100. We invite you to be a part of this journey beyond national parks for the protection of landscapes, biodiversity, culture and community.