Strengthening Management Effectiveness and Generating Multiple Environmental Benefits within and around the Greater Kafue National Park and West Lunga National Park in Zambia

About the Project

The 78,1880km2 project area, comprising Kafue NP (22,480km), West Lunga NP (1,684km2) and 13 Game Management Areas (GMAs) (54,021km2) is threated by wildlife poaching, deforestation and forest degradation, unsustainable land uses, extensive fire, and loss of a large, intact ecosystem that provides multiple benefits including forest protection, water and HEP, and biodiversity. The underlying cause of these threats in GMAs is open-access exploitation of land and resources, exacerbated by centralised and uncoordinated resource management policies, poverty, land degradation and climate change. Kafue National Park (KNP) was ineffectively managed whilst and West Lunga National Park (WLNP) was  neglected for many years. However both National Parks are in the process of being re-capitalized with new models of PA management, i.e. decentralised business centres and Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) respectively.

The project seeks to address these problems by supporting Zambia’s policies of decentralised management, both of Protected Areas, and of communities living in buffer zone protected areas (GMAs).  In Kafue National Park, it is a Protected Area (PA)-strengthening project with results including improved management effectiveness and financial viability, halving of fire incidence from the current level of 1.2m hectares annually, reduced poaching, and private sector investment in tourism.  In the GMAs, the Project will take a Community Based Natural Resources (CBNRM) approach to sustainable community livelihoods focused on devolved Village-based management units (Village Action Groups) through strengthening property rights and micro-governance, developing management plans and enhanced capacity for forest protection, developing evidence-based management systems and stakeholder processes, and improving or developing sustainable markets for wildlife, forests, carbon and water (Payment for Ecosystems Services) including through PPPs.   These initiatives are innovative, and will be supported by monitoring, research and capacity-building. The Project will develop the economic case for land use based on common pool wild resources (i.e. wildlife and forests) and ecosystem services (water, carbon stocks), as well as the case for inclusive pro-poor governance.

The Project will support and strengthen devolved models for effective governance, management and financing of PAs and community forest and wildlife management.  The Project will address de-facto open access resource management in GMAs by strengthening village institutions legally, and with capacity for planning, protection, monitoring and benefit generation and sharing.  The Project will address unsustainable forest use through CBNRM and Sustainable Forest Management/Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (SFM/REDD+) pilots.  The Project will address weakness in system capacity by strengthening systems and training participants in skills that include sustainable natural resource economic and institutional management, PPPs and PES for sustainable pro-poor growth, decentralised governance and management, and adaptive management through evidence-based stakeholder processes.