Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"Donors Pledge US$216 Mln to Protect African Forests," Reuters/Planet Ark, June 19, 2008.

TUNIS - Donors have pledged US$216 million for a fund to protect the Congo Basin forests of central Africa, home to 26 percent of the world's remaining tropical forests, the African Development Bank (AfDB) said on Wednesday.

"Each week, an area the size of 25,000 football pitches is cut down in the Congo Basin rainforest," the bank said in a statement announcing the creation of Congo Basin Forest Fund.

"According to the UN, if action is not taken now, more than 66 percent of the rainforest will be lost by 2040. This fund provides the best opportunity to the world to protect the second largest rainforest in the world after the Amazon."

The continental lender said the 10-year fund was launched in partnership with Britain, Norway and the 10 member states of the Central African Forests Commission.

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