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© NACSO/WWF Namibia

It's up to us to value and protect nature’s biodiversity.

Did you know?

Namibia has 43 registered and emerging community forests in Namibia, covering around 72,537 km2 within ten regions in the northern part of the country, 95% of which overlap with communal conservancies.  

© Patrick Bentley Photography
Why does it matter?

Threats to the world’s forests are growing. In degraded forests, small trees, bushes, and plants often are severely damaged or dead; rivers are polluted; slopes are eroded; and this leads to increased problems with wildlife as fewer resources mean animals push into human settlements.

Forest cover in Namibia was once much greater than it is now. With population growth has expanded the need for agriculture land, and timber for building traditional houses and the rapid commercial exploitation of species such as Zambezi Teak and Kiaat, forest reserves are in danger. Additionally, climate change is an increasing concern in Namibia, as well as the rest of the world, so the maintenance of forests as carbon sinks is particularly important.

© NACSO/WWF Namibia
What WWF is doing

WWF is working with the Directorate of Forestry in Namibia’s Ministry of Environment Forestry and Tourism to protect critical forests, including supporting the proclamation of the Zambezi State Forest to help secure resilient biodiversity and ecosystem services through large scale forest landscape protection and restoration.

We support resource monitors who are employed by community forests to conduct patrols, report illegal harvesting activities, and assist with forest resource inventories.  

WWF is working with our partners to assess standards, initiate research and establish sustainable harvest levels and the growth responses of key timber species and non-timber resources for improved forest management planning.

We work with communities to ensure sustainable use of forest products managed by community forests including the devil’s claw tuber (Harpagophytum species) and resin from Commiphora plants that are used to produce medicines and cosmetic products, respectively.