Conservation comes head-to-head with oil companies in Virunga National Park (DRC)

12 Jan

Devastatingly, two UK-listed oil companies — SOCO International and Dominion Petroleum — are planning to drill for oil in Virunga National Park, Democratic Republic of Congo. SOCO is currently drilling in other areas of the DRC, namely the North Congo Basin, whilst Dominion is most known for its oil plants in Tunisia, North Africa.

The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is currently calling on these companies to abandon potential drilling in the park, which will impact heavily on years of conservation work and the healthy biodiversity systems of the area. Similarly, the United Nations’ (UN) cultural arm, UNESCO, has appealed to Congolese President Joesph Kabila to abandon his support of oil activity  in the area.

The breathtaking beauty of the Virunga National Park, DRC, where oil companies plan to drill for oil.

Virunga National Park, the DRC’s first World Heritage Site, is home to the popular mountain gorillas and similarly many other fish, reptile and bird species. As such, the effects of oil activity could be devastating, particularly on the livelihood of the endangered Shelley’s Crimsonwing finch, which is believed to inhabit various high-lying areas of the Virunga National Park.

The RFCG therefore calls on the international conservation community and finch enthusiasts to condemn oil drilling efforts in Virunga National Park and other World Heritage Sites. How heartbreaking it is to see man’s wallet destroying the efforts of conservation and biodiversity!

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