Dispossession and deforestation in the name of conservation and development
Illegal evictions of adivasi communities from Kanha and Achanakmar National Parks
50 million people are estimated to have been displaced by Modi’s development projects in India, of which about 60% are adivasis. As adivasis account for only 8% of the population of India, this figure is shocking. 50 million people is, as Arundhati Roy points out, ‘almost three times the population of Australia. More than three times the number of refugees that Partition created in India. Ten times the number of Palestinian refugees’.
Jan 04, 2016
A Hunting Ban Saps a Village’s Livelihood
This village was one of many supported by USAID's Natural Resources Management Project and by its successor projects. An enormous investment in building sustainable relationships between communities and wildlife has been dramatically undone by legislation that favours the rich and further marginalizes Botswana’s rural poor.
Sep 13, 2015
Harsh treatment for indigenous Botswanans ousted from Kalahari wildlife reserve
In 1997, the government of Botswana began evicting indigenous San and Bakgalagadi people from their homelands in the Central Kalahari Game Reserve. Since then, local and international advocacy groups have been fighting to enable the groups to return. Domestic activists face harsh consequences from the state, including arrest, beating, and alleged torture, while foreign activists on their behalf face arrest, visa restriction, and expulsion from the country.
Aug 24, 2015
The Ecotourism Industry Is Saving Tanzania’s Animals and Threatening Its Indigenous People
Before he was shot, on July 9, 2014, Olunjai Timan slaughtered a cow and his wife made stew. Not wanting to miss the fresh meal, the wiry Maasai herder sent two of his sons to graze the family's cattle on their own. But before Timan could finish eating, the boys came racing back. They had mistakenly wandered onto the adjacent property, a 12,000-acre tract operated by the Boston-based ecotourism outfitter Thomson Safaris.
May 12, 2015
Partnering for Conservation benefits Tacana people
"People asked who it was going to benefit, and how," he said. "They worried that we would lose our traditions."
The idea of a tourism venture first arose in 1998, three years after the park was created. It took another five years to bring it to fruition with assistance from several international non-profit groups, says Constantino Nay, general manager of the tourism operation.
Mar 05, 2015
Can Indigenous and Wildlife Conservationists Work Together?
Indigenous and wildlife conservationists have common goals and common adversaries, but seem to be struggling to find common ground in the fight for sustainable forests.
The forest lifestyle of the Baka people of Cameroon helps provide improved habitats for wild animals. When the Baka clear a patch for a camp, the clearing later turns into secondary forest that gorillas prefer, Mike Hurran, Survival International Africa campaigner, told IPS.
Mar 05, 2015
Indigenous Peoples destroyed for misguided 'conservation'
A pesentation by Gordon Bennett and colleagues at the 'Beyond Enforcement: Communities, governance, incentives and sustainable use in combating wildlife crime' conference, 26-28th February at Glenburn Lodge, Muldersdrift, South Africa.
As we celebrate 'World Wildlife Day' today, there's little for nature's best defenders to be glad of, says human rights lawyer Gordon Bennett. Indigenous Peoples around the world are routinely attacked, starved and cut off from the lands and wildlife they have protected for millennia under a flawed and brutal model of 'conservation'.
Mar 03, 2015
A film facilitated by Insightshare and made by six people from five villages in Loliondo
Olosho is a powerful new video exploring the ongoing land-rights struggle by the Maasai community in Loliondo, from the perspective of those on the frontline. It was created by six members of the Tanzanian Maasai community who have been battling for over twenty years to protect their territory from foreign companies and their own government.
Feb 26, 2015