August 2020
ABCG AWF activity in Mngeta Valley Tanzania Photo by Lilian Santos TFCG and Damas Mbaga AWF
News Highlights

 The current COVID-19 pandemic continues to exemplify the strong and direct link between human health and ecosystem health and the need to find a balance where both nature and people thrive. To promote this healthy interrelationship, the Africa Biodiversity Collaborative Group (ABCG) through the Population Health and Environment (PHE) working group, is implementing effective approaches that integrate biodiversity conservation and activities that contribute to improved global health. The human health aspect is important to environmental health because, a healthy community is better placed to take care of their environment and improve the welfare of the ecosystem. 
ABCG AWF climatechangesurvey Tanzania

Climate change has direct impacts on ecosystems and biodiversity, but may also indirectly impact nature through human adaptation responses which are less understood. Through its Managing Global Change Impacts working group, the ABCG has surveyed coping responses of human communities to climate change in 10 African countries as well as the biodiversity impacts of those responses. A survey by ABCG in Tanzania revealed that communities are experiencing hotter, drier, windier, and unpredictable seasonality due to climate change. To cope with these climate-induced changes, communities are clearing natural areas to expand cropland in a bid to increase their harvest, overgrazing areas with their livestock, and illegally hunting wildlife. ABCG is working together with the communities to develop interventions that would support them cope with climate change without destroying biodiversity.
COVID-19 Partner News Roundup  

The COVID-19 pandemic has tragically exposed the risks humanity faces and how unprepared we are to respond. People's health, well-being, and livelihoods are all affected. These threats are multiplied by the growing impacts of the climate crisis - more extreme storms, droughts, heat waves, food crises, and diseases - which have not stopped. The Global Commission on Adaptation calls on world leaders to incorporate climate resilience into economic recovery packages. World leaders should align policies with longer-term climate objectives, build global partnerships, and mobilize private sector support for improved climate resilience.

WWF's international science team conducted a review of scientific and government literature to find out where and how nature and zoonotic pathogen pathways intersect. This literature review found that there are three critical enabling conditions that are causing an increase in these pathogen spill-over events from animals to humans: 1) Land-use change which results in the loss and degradation of nature, 2) Intensification and expansion of agriculture and animal production to meet increasing demand for animal protein worldwide, and 3) Exploitation of wildlife including the sale and consumption of high-risk live wild animals. 

A new study in science developed by a group of public health experts, ecologists, economists and epidemiologists, outlines a groundbreaking plan to decrease the risk of future pandemics by 27 percent or more - with a 10-year investment that is 50 times less than the cost of coronavirus response efforts to date. The strategy highlights 3 ways to prevent future pandemics: reduce deforestation, restrict the global wildlife trade and monitor the emergence of new viruses before they spread.
Upcoming Events 
Zebras in Amboseli by Jordi Fernandez unsplash

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Congressional Briefing with experts from the Global Environment Facility (GEF), who will discuss GEF's COVID-19 Pandemic Task Force, origins and drivers of COVID-19 and other emerging zoonoses, and ways in which GEF programs are responding to the pandemic. 

Photo credit - AWF

This webinar will discuss key leadership practices that leaders of conservation organizations are employing in dealing and responding to the global pandemic. Register here:
ABCG FWWASH CSA spring rehabilitation photo credit Mzingisi Nyhodo CSA

The ABCG FW-WASH has developed and ground truthed a Freshwater Conservation and WASH Advocacy Strategy Workshop Facilitator's Guide. The guide lays out steps for conservation, health, and development practitioners to develop an advocacy strategy to design messaging and activities to urge donors, policymakers, and colleagues of the need to unite and join forces for conservation and health. This great tool will be launched in a webinar presentation on Thursday August 20 2020. Mark your calendars and stay tuned for more details. 

Friday July 31, 2020 was #WorldRangersDay we join the world in appreciating the efforts made by these conservation heroes in protecting nature!

Stay up to date with our news and update by following us on twitter @ABCGConserve today!
2020 WorldRangersDay

Evelyn Namvua | Africa Biodiversity Collaborative Group| Email | Website 
ABCG is supported by USAID to advance understanding of critical biodiversity conservation challenges and their solutions in sub-Saharan Africa.