Five African countries are now implementing the IUCN Green List (GL) initiative: Kenya was the pilot country in 2014, followed by Benin in 2016, Cote d’Ivoire in 2017, and Madagascar and Nigeria in 2018. In order to build a GL network in Africa dedicated to sharing successful conservation solutions throughout the continent, there is a strong need for collaboration.
In particular, to jointly coordinate the work of all the Implementing Partners, African Expert Assessment groups for the Green List (EAGLs), GL mentors, and Protected and Conserved Area staff, so as to ensure that they will provide appropriate expertise and experience for GL evaluation and implementation. The recent workshop in March aiming at sharing lessons learnt in Kenya with the 2 Protected Areas committed to the GL in Cote d’Ivoire is a good example of this initiative of harmonizing and sharing experiences about the GL processes throughout Africa.
The workshop enabled Tai and Comoe National Parks in Cote d’Ivoire to develop an action plan to address the GL indicators that are not yet met based on the experiences shared from Kenya. Cote d’Ivoire is also an interesting case study that demonstrates that Protected Areas engaged in implementing the GL standard can attract donors and/or conservation partner’s support and funding in order to achieve IUCN Green List status.
The German Development Agency GIZ (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH) has been supporting Tai and Comoe National Parks throughout the GL self-assessment process and the action plan development since the 2 parks committed to the GL process in 2017. This shows how the GL standards can be useful for donors and/or conservation partners to monitor the cost effectiveness of their support to specific sites over time, and it enables the parks to join global and regional communities implementing best practices for protected area management effectiveness.