Press Release

AWF Leads Discussion on Dismantling the False Choice at the European Development Days 2021

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NAIROBI, Kenya, June 10, 2021 – The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) will convene a discussion on African Landscapes for People and Wildlife: Dismantling the false choice between conservation and development on Wednesday 16 June 2021 at 15:10 CET as part of the European Development Days 2021. This timely debate features panel speakers from the two continents Frederick Kumah, Vice President External Affairs at AWF, Simon Malete, Lead of the African Group of Negotiators to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), Pauline Nantongo Kalunda, Executive Director of Ecotrust and  Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, Member of the European Parliament. The session will be moderated by Simangele Msweli, Senior Manager of the AWF’s Youth Leadership Program.

Africa today is young, dynamic and entrepreneurial but development approaches based on traditional growth trajectories threaten wildlife and wild lands, compromising ecosystem services that sustain us all. Africa’s dilemma is how to deliver on the development aspirations of a rapidly growing human population while maintaining viable and ecologically functional wildlife populations and natural habitats. This conversation will explore the persistent perception that conservation and development are competing objectives and make the case for smarter, greener investments.

Speaking in advance of the session, Frederick Kumah, Vice President External Affairs at AWF says, “The session will explore the role  African leaders play in shaping a more sustainable path by investing in wildlife economies that incentivize conservation and restoration while providing for people.” Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, Member of the European Parliament and speaker explains that: “The European Union must partner with Africa to deliver on the European Green Deal. Both continents have an opportunity to join forces and lead the way in global action on protecting biodiversity and our ecosystems. Together, they can show the world how the economy evolves within the safe operating space of our planet.”

The panel session will address the following themes:

  • Why the perception that conservation and development cannot happen together persists.
  • To what extent the ambitious post-2020 global biodiversity goals and targets are adequate in stemming biodiversity loss. 
  • How to create a sustainable flow of funding for Africa’s biodiversity agenda.
  • How ensuring benefits flow to communities managing habitat and living with wildlife in Africa can transform mindsets and deliver lasting solutions.

The session will be held on Wednesday 16 June 2021 at 15:10 CET/16:10 EAT.

Register for the session here.

For more information or to arrange interviews contact:

Wambui Odhiambo of AWF in Nairobi, Kenya at
+254 728 886987

Uzoamaka Madu of H+K Strategies, Belgium at
+44 7729 490 573

About African Wildlife Foundation

The African Wildlife Foundation is the primary advocate for the protection of wildlife and wild lands as an essential part of a modern and prosperous Africa. Founded in 1961 to focus on Africa’s conservation needs, we articulate a uniquely African vision, bridge science and public policy, and demonstrate the benefits of conservation to ensure the survival of the continent’s wildlife and wild lands.