Researchers meeting in
It is mid-afternoon in Lom Pangar in
"We enter the forest and do a survey of the area before Chinese engineers come in and destroy the trees. They will build company offices and hospitals after destroying the trees."
African forests at risk
A group of researchers from 20 African, American and European universities, who met recently in the Cameroonian capital
Sub-Saharan countries are losing forest faster than anyhwere else on earth, the researchers said. Trees are being cut down to build houses, to make ways for huge hydroelectric dams and to meet the demand for timber from
Thomas Smith from the
"With a 1.5 degree rise in global temperature,
He also said that a rise of 3 degrees in global temperatures could mean a loss of 40 percent of all mammal species in
One species that researchers say is disappearing is the African chimpanzee.
"Their habitat will change fundamentally and they will no longer be around," Gonder said.
South African researcher
"For certain species in
Such warnings about disappearing species comes as African countries are investing in energy and extractive industries in a bid to develop their economies and eradicate poverty.
Green economies as an answer
Smith said development and conservation in
"With these enormous challenges we need to develop green economies. We need to make sure that the development we do is sustainable," Smith said.
He said his university is working with third parties to develop new strategies for the creation of green jobs which can preserve forests and at the same time produce commercially viable crops for food.
"So we need to be thinking about how to preserve the natural processes and at the same time provide for the economic needs of the country," he said.
Author Moki Kindzeka in
Keywords Climate change, cameroon, ecosystem, pimates, rapid population growth, global warming
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