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​Summit for Sustainability in Africa

This conference took place May 24-25, 2012. The Government of Botswana and Conservation International hosted a Summit for Sustainability in Africa, bringing together African heads of state and leaders from the private and independent sectors to explore how understanding, valuing and managing Africa's natural capital can secure its future.

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EditBox Heading:The Gaborone Declaration
EditText Paragraph 1:The Declaration, a set of concrete principles and development goals that soundly move the value of natural capital from the periphery to the center of development planning, is the culmination of discussions held over the two-day Summit for Sustainability in Africa, a first of its kind on the continent.
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    As much of the global conversation focuses on sustainable development in theory, the good news is that forward-thinking African nations already have begun to make progress.

    With the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) on the near horizon, the Government of Botswana and Conservation International hosted the inaugural Summit for Sustainability in Africa in Gaborone, Botswana on May 24-25, 2012.

    The Summit brought together for the first time the heads of state of several African nations who share a bold vision for a more sustainable future, including His Excellency the President of the Republic of Botswana, Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama, who was the keynote speaker.

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      Attendees

      Joining President Khama was the heads of state and government of Liberia, Mozambique and Namibia — leaders with the courage to look past the short-term gains of unsustainable development and the will to ensure long-term prosperity through the stewardship of "natural capital," or the wealth of benefits and services provided to people by biodiversity and ecosystems such as watersheds, forests, coral reefs, and grasslands.

      Ministers from Rwanda, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania and Norway were also in attendance, joining the heads of state — along with global leaders from the private and public sectors — in a collaborative discussion of how, in partnership, they can secure the future of the gathered nations through development plans that properly value and account for their considerable natural capital.

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        Results

        In addition to signing and supporting the Gaborone Declaration, participating countries reaffirmed their commitments to implementing all existing conventions and declaration that promote sustainable development, such as the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the U.N. Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

        The Summit participants who will be attending Rio+20 later this month plan to leverage the Declaration as a roadmap for healthy, sustainable economies worldwide — inspiring the rest of the world to follow Africa’s lead.



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        EditTitle:Sub-Saharan Africa
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        EditImage Alt Text:Woman carrying baby, Togo. © Art Wolfe/ www.artwolfe.com

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        EditTitle:Working with Governments
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        EditTitle:Global Stability
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        EditImage Alt Text:Udzungwa National Park's Sanje Waterfall overlooks farmland that depends on its water. © Benjamin Drummond