Photo: Palm trees in Plant de Ngombe-Mombangi, Orientale Province DRC (Bing)
Industrial agriculture rapidly expands across the Democratic Republic of the Congo
New report highlights competition between mining and logging interests with REDD+
A new Moabi report highlights that efforts to slow forest loss in the Democratic Republic of the Congo face growing challenges from expanding mining and logging interests. The DRC government’s flagship REDD+ program, Mai-Ndombe, has seen a dramatic increase in artisanal logging permits and new exploitation mining permits have been issued in other REDD+ priority zones. Moabi's report focuses on geographic areas that are critical for reducing forest carbon emissions in DRC: the Mai-Ndombe jurisdictional program, the supply basin of forest resources to Kinshasa, eight REDD+ projects, and the US government-financed CARPE program located in six regions of the DRC.
MOABI report on future deforestation in DRC
Land use is a crucial factor in both economic development and the environment. Land dedicated to agriculture allows regular production which benefits nearby populations, meeting their food needs, and potentially benefits the economy as a whole. On the other hand, agricultural land has a much lower carbon content than forest land and is generally poorer in biodiversity. Land can be used in different ways to achieve different goals and it may be difficult to achieve all goals at the same time, which means making difficult choices when designing policies. The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is the largest and most populated country of Central Africa. Humid dense forests cover 114 million hectares which represent half the DRC territory. According to the United Nations forecast, DRC will become the tenth most populated country in the world by the end of the century with more than 200 million inhabitants. Considerable efforts will be needed to improve livelihoods without exhausting large natural resources of the country.