“A few weeks before the COP 26, one of the strong results that Cameroon could present to the world would surely not be this very worrying rate of deforestation, but that it has decided, for example, to cancel the project of the company Camvert, which wants to destroy 60,000 hectares of forest to plant oil palm in the districts of Campo and Niete (South Cameroon)”Greenpeace Africa states.
Greenpeace, an international NGO committed to environmental protection has decried the worrying deforestation in Cameroon, urging government to cancel the Camvert project ahead of COP 26.
The Camvert project is said to destroy 60,000 hectares of forest to plant oil palm in the districts of Campo and Niete (South Cameroon).
The NGO indicates that projects such as those of Camvert and Sudcam or even industrial timber exploitation, currently underway in the South Cameroon region, are sufficient proof that in Cameroon, actions do not follow the fine promises of leaders.
“A situation that remains quite worrying when we know that Cameroon, like other African states, is very vulnerable to climate change. It should also be stressed that every time a hectare of forest is razed, it is the local communities that pay a heavy price because their survival is closely linked to the protection of these forests”, Greenpeace Africa stresses.
According to Greenpeace Africa, a report by the National Observatory of Climate Change (ONACC) shows that between 2000 and 2017, Cameroon lost 1.5 million hectares of its forest.
“This is an alarming enough figure, but it does not alter the rate of deforestation in the country”, Greenpeace regrets.
Another report made public at the end of October by the National Observatory of Climate Change, indicated that 17 years, Cameroon has lost 1.5 million hectares of its forest cover.
Before the report of the ONACC, the European Union that pointed out that every year, Cameroon loses an area of forest equal to three times the surface of Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon.
Also, the World Resources Institute in a publication earlier this year ranked Cameroon in 2020 in the top 10 countries in the world with the greatest loss of primary forests, that is to say more than 100,000 hectares of primary forests destroyed in that year alone.
Greenpeace laments that leaders, including the Minister of Environment, Nature Protection and Sustainable Development (Minepded), as well as the Minister of Wildlife and Flora (Minfof) continue to be optimistic about Cameroon’s ability to effectively meet its international commitments.
For Ranece Jovial Ndjeudja, Forest Campaigner at Greenpeace Africa, “Fine speeches will not save the forest. Concrete actions are needed. The Cameroonian state must be more serious in its commitments. Cameroon’s policy on forest management is paradoxical. On the discursive level, we have leaders who present themselves as the best defenders of the environment but the reality on the ground is quite different.”
The ministries concerned have not reacted to the release by Greenpeace.