The Democratic Republic of Congo has suffered decades of violence and displacement. For those returning home and beginning to rebuild their lives, finding new ways of living without putting pressure on the forest is a new challenge. Cool Earth is working with community champions in Lubutu, proving that local people are the most powerful conservation force there is.
Rainforest communities worldwide protect nearly 22% of the Earth’s surface, 80% of biodiversity and manage nearly four billion tonnes of carbon in their trees and soil.
Lubutu is no exception. The forest that Geneveve calls home stores 146 million tonnes of carbon and shelters five families of the critically endangered Grauer’s Gorilla along with 6,710 other species. But protecting it is no easy task. Aside from the mining of conflict minerals, one of the biggest drivers of deforestation in the Congo Basin is the demand for wood to burn for cooking, heating, and light.
It takes a village to save a forest. With support from Cool Earth, Geneveve and her community have installed 500 energy-efficient stoves, reducing the amount of firewood collected by half. This year, she’s part of a group who are researching which livelihoods the community should invest in, to create a sustainable future for their families.
From the depths of the Peruvian Amazon to Papua New Guinea and the forests of the Congo Basin, you can support the communities fighting to protect their forest.
Thanks to two incredibly generous donors, your donations to Cool Earth from now until the end of year will be matched. Pound for pound. Dollar for dollar. Meaning you can have twice the impact in 2019. If you want to champion the rainforest, now is the time to act.