The U.S. office of the Environmental Law Alliance Worldwide (ELAW) is pleased to announce a new $1 million grant from the U.K.-based Arcadia to protect biodiversity around the world.
This funding will enable ELAW to collaborate with grassroots lawyers protecting endangered biodiversity and ecosystems in dozens of countries. The five-year project will help build a global corps of skilled lawyers working to protect biodiversity and ecosystems for years to come.
“Support from Arcadia will make it possible to work with ELAW partners to engage communities in protecting local resources,” says ELAW Executive Director Bern Johnson. He adds: “Together, we will enforce laws and challenge unsustainable development projects that threaten biodiversity and ecosystems, and strengthen laws to provide better protection.”
The project is underway and ELAW has already achieved impact in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
Olivier Ndoole at Congolese Alert for the Environment and Human Rights (ACEDH) announced in October that his organization obtained the first ever court order declaring that fishing licenses that conflict with conservation management agreements violate the law.
Lake Edward, on the shores of DRC’s Virunga National Park, suffers from overfishing due to lax enforcement of fishing regulations. The order allows subsistence fishing to continue, but fishing licenses granted to outsiders are null and void. This ruling should reduce pressure on the lake’s fish and allow them to recover. Ndoole has traveled to Eugene twice to work with ELAW.
ELAW’s work with ACEDH was made possible, in part, by the grant from Arcadia.
ELAW opened its doors in Eugene in 1991 and has collaborated with public interest lawyers to protect the environment in more than 80 countries around the world. For more information about ELAW’s work, visit: www.elaw.org.
Arcadia is a charitable fund of Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin. It supports charities and scholarly institutions that preserve cultural heritage and the environment. Arcadia also supports projects that promote open access and all of its awards are granted on the condition that any materials produced are made available for free online. Since 2002, Arcadia has awarded more than $910 million to projects around the world. Find more information on the Arcadia website: www.arcadiafund.org.uk.
Lake Edward, Democratic Republic of Congo. PHOTO: Dreamstime.com