The recent political instability in Madagascar represents a potential threat to decades of globally important conservation work on the island-nation off southern Africa. Conservation International (CI) has major investments throughout the country to protect and expand Madagascar’s unique biodiversity and all the benefits it provides local communities.
During such times of uncertainty, it is imperative for CI and others committed to conserving Madagascar’s natural heritage for the sake of human well-being to increase their efforts and resources to the cause. A void in governance, no matter how temporary, can allow exploitative forces to sidestep legal barriers and plunder protected areas for raw materials and species. Evidence of such illegal activity has already emerged.
CI calls on the international community, partners in conservation and sustainable development, and all who believe in the fundamental value of healthy ecosystems to the planet and its people to continue supporting local communities and civil society organizations in maintaining Madagascar’s protected area network for the development of the country and the benefit of the planet as a whole.