Chad and Central African Republic

Sustainable management of the Chari River basin


Partners: Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Preserving the Biodiversity and Fragile Ecosystems of Central Africa (ECOFAC), European Commission, Lion Recovery Fund (LRF), Ministere de Eaux et Forest (RCA).

Key thematic areas

i) development of actions and synergies for implementing the Paris Agreement on climate change and   nationally determined contributions,
ii) conservation and sustainable management of natural resources and biodiversity (implementation of CDB, ratified in Central African Republic in 1992),
iii) strengthening food security and nutrition.


Major security and governance issues dramatically hamper development of the region, from both socioeconomic and environmental dimensions. These instabilities result in the rapid decline of wildlife heritage, degradation of critical ecosystems, and in the case of northern Central African Republic, the general overexploitation of natural resources.


This project aims to maintain biodiversity and ecosystem services provided to the people by the protected areas and riparian areas of the Chad and Central African Republic borders in the landscape of central Chari basin. It also seeks to manage conflict mitigation and conservation within the central Chari basin landscape, South-West Chad and North Cameroon cross-border area.


The cross-border area includes the provinces of Moyen-Chari, Salamat, Mandoul and Mayo-Kebi-Ouest of southern Chad, and the prefectures of Bamingui-Bangoran, Nana Grebizi and Vakaga in northern Central African Republic, including Bamingui-Bangoran and Manovo-Gounda St. Floris National Parks (World Heritage List). Chad and Central African Republic are considered among the 10 weakest states in the world, ranked 187th and 188th, respectively, on the Human Development Index in 2020. With valuable natural resources and the world’s last wildlife strongholds, Chad and the Central African Republic also place lowest in environmental performance. Although the Chadian landscapes have vast oil and livestock resources, and Central African Republic areas are rich in minerals and timber, their communities are severely food insecure and highly dependent on humanitarian aid. Rebel groups and weak governance have blocked any prospect of socioeconomic development over the last decades.


“Integrated landscape” and “islands of integrity” approaches will be applied to protected areas in parks and hunting areas. Good governance will be extended to stabilize conditions to allow vulnerable local actors to negotiate and carry out territorial developments, as well as to generate income which, in return, will increase the legitimacy of protected areas.

Specific actions

A network will be established for surveillance and information sharing towards the coordinated management of protected areas, transhumance and cross-border criminal activities.

A range of useful data such as ecological inventories, maps of actors, spatial scenarios and monitoring systems will be collected and shared. To counter threats to protected areas in the BC Chari landscape, aerial and satellite monitoring, as well as mapping of wild habitats, are also planned.

Illegal exploitation and pastoralist areas are being mapped to prevent conflict and track illicit wildlife activity. Three or four transhumance corridors are being conceived to protect natural resources and Indigenous populations, and three to four strategic crossing points for pastoral services are being identified.

Opportunities for payments for ecosystem services (e.g., REDD + carbon capture) in the central Chari basin landscape are also being analyzed, and a pilot project on wildlife management will be set up.


  • Zowoya, Florent (, Central African Republic, Country Director
  • D’agnanno, Antonio (, Central African Republic, Landscape Manager