Environment

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    A journalistic investigation conducted in 12 West African countries revealed extensive trafficking of the region’s protected wildlife. This traffic mainly involves apes, especially chimpanzees, which are sold as pets through a complex chain of intermediaries including poachers, traffickers, transporters and buyers. Read on
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    The latest report on the status of African elephant from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates that some 111 000 elephants in Africa disappeared between 2006 and 2015. IUCN attributes this sharp decline to the expansion of ivory poaching on the continent, particularly in southern Africa. The situation in West Africa is unique since the sub-region, home to less than 3% of the total number of African elephants, is the only one with an increase in population between the 2006 and 2015 censuses. Read on
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    Fascinating satellite images from NASA show fires raging across West Africa as farmers carry out the cyclical clearing of last year's crop remains. Each hot spot, which appears as a red mark, is an area where the thermal detectors on the Suomi NPP satellite recognised temperatures higher than background. When accompanied by plumes of smoke, as in the images, such hot spots are diagnostic for fire. Read on
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    West African ministers came together to outline a course of action to accelerate progress on the Great Green Wall. The First Conference of the Great Green Wall for the Sahara and the Sahel Initiative was held from 2-7 May in Dakar, bringing together ministers from countries north and south of the Sahara as well as their development partners. Organised by the African Union, the high-level conference follows on the COP21 climate change conference, during which the international community pledged an additional USD 4 billion in support for the Great Green Wall over the next 5 years. Read on
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    Nearly 30% of the West African population does not have access to an improved drinking water source. While disparities between rural and urban areas are decreasing, significant gaps remain. Among the Sahelian countries, only Burkina Faso and Mali have achieved Target C of MDG 7 relating to access to safe drinking water; no Sahelian country has achieved the goal relating to access to basic sanitation services. Read on
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    Held every year on 22 March, World Water Day is dedicated this year to the theme of water and employment. In West Africa as elsewhere, water is a job creator (building and maintenance of infrastructure, distribution, etc.) and is necessary for agriculture (irrigation) as well as for urban development. As a public good, targeted by Sustainable Development Goal 6, access to water and sanitation leads to indirect positive effects on employment, due to its role in the development of human capital. Read on
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    Few indicators offer a more mixed picture of Africa than that of waterways. Represented according to their permanent or seasonal nature, African waterways seem to cut the continent into a succession of zones of unequal thickness. Read on
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    The CILSS is implementing the regional component of an ambitious multi-stakeholder project which aims to more than double the irrigated areas of six Sahelian countries to 1 million hectares by 2020. Funded by the World Bank Group, the Sahel Irrigation Initiative Programme (SIIP) covers Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Senegal. Read on
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    The 10th Annual Ouagadougou Development Day (Journée ouagalaise du développement) aimed to localise and operationalise the issue that brought all world leaders around the table last December in Paris. The annual event, organised by the Delegation of the European Union to Burkina Faso, was held on 26 January under the theme "The COP21 climate change agreement: What prospects for Burkina Faso?". Read on