Untitled Document


  • Objective
  • History
  • Organization
  • CARPE Partners
  • CBFP &
  • Where CARPE Works

Strategic Objective

Central Africa Regional Program for the Environment (CARPE) is currently in the second of three proposed phases. Phase II is specifically concerned with intensive implementation and the establishment of improved natural resource management capacity in order to reduce deforestation and conserve biodiversity.

The strategic objective of CARPE is to reduce the rate of forest degradation and loss of biodiversity in the Congo Basin by increasing local, national, and regional natural resource management capacity.

Intermediate results to be achieved in order to reach this objective involve implementing sustainable forest and biodiversity management practices, strengthening environmental governance, and working to monitor forests and other natural resources throughout the region.

By working to fulfill its objective, CARPE supports broader efforts to alleviate poverty in Central Africa by helping to conserve the biotic resources necessary for sustainable development. CARPE also provides global benefits by contributing to efforts to slow climate change and protect the species and genetic resources of the Congo Basin.

The third Phase of CARPE will be initiated in 2013, for which a single development objective is proposed: "The ecological integrity of the humid forest ecosystem of the Congo Basin is maintained." Phase III will focus on sustainable management of targeted forested landscapes, mitigation of biodiversity threats, establishing policy and regulatory environments to support forest and biodiversity conservation, and strengthening capacity to monitor forests, greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity. The objective and rationale for Phase III are more fully described in the Regional Development Cooperation Strategy 2012-2020.


The CARPE program was first authorized by the U.S. Government in 1995 and was initially proposed as a 20-year regional initiative divided three strategic phases.

Phase I of CARPE began operating out of Washington, D.C in 1997 and centered on gathering information on the Central African forest ecosystem, while simultaneously building regional human resources and institutional capacity.

The program began in four countries; the Central African Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and the Republic of Congo. Since its beginning five additional countries have been added; Burundi, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, and Sao Tome & Principe.

In 1997, there were no USAID missions in Congo Basin countries and the decision was made to work directly through partner organizations already operating in the region. The first set of ten partners included: the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS); the World Resources Institute (WRI); World Wildlife Fund (WWF); World Learning (later succeeded by Innovative Resource Management (IRM)); the U.S. Forest Service (USFS); the Peace Corps; and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)‚ in collaboration with the Universities of Virginia and Maryland. The tenth partner‚ the Biodiversity Support Program (BSP), a USAID-funded consortium of the World Wildlife Fund‚ The Nature Conservancy‚ and the World Resources Institute‚ handled program management until its Global Bureau cooperative agreement ended in December‚ 2001.

Four other partners began participating in CARPE in 2000: the World Conservation Union (IUCN); Conservation International (CI); the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF); and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).

In January of 2003, CARPE began its second strategic phase and officially transferred management to the region. CARPE Phase II is being operated as a regional Strategic Objective (SO) managed through the environmental sector of USAID in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Phase II is specifically concerned with supporting sustainable natural resource management in the field, improving environmental governance, and strengthening natural resource monitoring capacity in Central Africa.

The implementation of Phase II corresponded with the launching of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP) at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development. At the summit, the U.S. Government (USG) committed $53 million to finance the CBFP's efforts to support sustainable forestry, biodiversity conservation, and poverty alleviation. The USG identified CARPE as the principal mechanism through which these funds would be dispersed.

From 2003-2005 USAID-CARPE dispersed approximately $15 million per year to promote the objectives of the CBFP and the following Administrative and Legislative Priorities: the Congo Basin Forest Partnership Presidential Initiative, the Global Development Alliance, the Presidential Initiative Against Illegal Logging, the Global Climate Change Initiative, the Biodiversity Legislative "earmark" FAA Section 118, the Tropical Forestry Legislative "earmark" FAA Section 119, and the Microenterprise "earmark". In addition to the funds provided through the USG, CARPE requires matching funds from its primary partners amounting in aggregate to more than 50% of USAID's contribution.

USAID has proposed a third CARPE strategic phase that is expected to continue through 2016. Phase III will build on the investments, results and lessons learned from the first two phases, most likely with a strong emphasis on mitigating global climate change through tropical forest conservation, ecosystems services payments systems and executing tropical forest land use plans developed in phase II.


CARPE was designed as a long-term, regional initiative. It operates as a stand alone Strategic Objective in the environment sector of the United States Agency for International Development's (USAID) Africa Bureau and is being managed out of the USAID Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. CARPE is the principal mechanism through which the U.S. Government promotes the objectives of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP).

In order to execute effectively this comprehensive program, USAID directly funds multiple partner organizations. These implementing partners include both international conservation organizations and "cross-cutting" service providers.

The majority of CARPE funds are allocated to planning and management activities within the 12 CARPE landscapes. The CARPE Landscape Programs are currently being administered by multiple international conservation organizations functioning as consortia. These consortia are led by a single member and include other international NGOs, local NGOs, government agencies, international research institutions, and specific individuals to implement the landscape programs.

In addition to the landscape programs, CARPE also supports broader cross-cutting activities throughout the Congo Basin. Cross-cutting activities are designed to bring specific expertise to the Congo Basin and are concerned with a wide variety of tasks, including: forestry and natural resources monitoring, improved natural resources governance, policy development, and institutional capacity building.

Finally, to provide additional technical and administrative guidance at the country level, CARPE supports 9 national-level 'Focal Points', one for each of the nine Central African countries where CARPE operates. Focal Points work with local non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizations to increase their capacity to accomplish CARPE activities while convening a range of stakeholders to support an improved policy environment at national level.

CARPE Administration

USAID – Central African Regional Office Address:
198 Isiro Ave., Kinshasa, Gombe, Democratic Republic of Congo
Mailing Address:
Unit 31550, APO AE 09828
Kinshasa, DRC

For all inquiries, please contact:

  • Son NGUYEN, PhD
    CARPE Acting Director
    Phone: (243) 81-555-4542 / (243) 81-174-2687
  • Antoine Justin EYEBE
    Natural Resource Management Specialist
    Phone: (243) 81-555-4545 / (243) 81-715-1094
  • Julie FISCHER
    CARPE Climate Change Advisor
    Phone: (243) 81-555-4611 / (243) 81-707-4692
  • Suzanne M. NKITABUNGI
    CARPE Administrative Assistant
    Phone: (243) 81-555-4611 / (243) 81-707-4692

USAID/Democratic Republic of Congo Adjunct CARPE Office Members

  • Kimberly THOMPSON
    Natural Resources Officer
    Phone: (243) 81-555-4492 / (243) 81-950-1207

CARPE Partners

African Wildlife Foundation (AWF)

  • Chief of Party
    Akpona Adeloui HUGUES
    Phone: (+243)82 055 2590 / (+243)97 957 1438

  • Headquarters
    Charly FACHEUX
    Vice President, Conservation Projects
    AWF Conservation Centre
    Ngong Road, Karen
    P.O. Box 310, 00502
    Nairobi, Kenya
    Phone: (+254)20 276 5000 / (+254) 71 674 7697

Conservation International (CI)

  • Chief of Party
    Michael SIMSIK
    Phone: (+243) 82 042 8341

  • Headquarters
    Jessica LEAS
    Field Program Management
    2011 Crystal Drive, Suite 500
    Arlington, VA 22202 USA
    Phone: (703)341-2617 / (703)341-2400

The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International (DFGFI)

  • The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International
    800 Cherokee Ave., SE
    Atlanta, GA 30315 USA
    Phone: (404) 624-5881 or 1 (800) 851-0203

Gilman International Conservation (GIC)

GCI Logo
  • Gilman International Conservation
    581705 White Oak Road
    Yulee, FL 32097 USA
    Phone: (904) 225-3396

The Jane Goodall Institute (JGI)

  • George Strunden
    4245 North Fairfax Drive, Suite 600
    Arlington, VA 22203 USA
    Phone: (703) 682-9220
    Fax: (703) 682-9312
  • Keith Brown
    4245 North Fairfax Drive,Suite 600
    Arlington, VA 22203 USA
    Phone: (703) 682-9220
    Fax: (703) 682-9312

International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

  • Kenneth Angu Angu
    B.P. 5506
    Yaoundé Cameroon
    Phone: +237 221-6496
    Fax: +237 221-6497

Missouri Botanical Garden (MBG)


National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

  • Woody Turner
    NASA Headquarters, Office of Earth Science (Code YO)
    300 E Street, SW
    Washington, DC 20546 USA
    Phone: (202) 358-1662
    Fax: (202) 358-2770
  • Compton Tucker
    NASA Goddard Space Flight Center
    Greenbelt, MD 20771
    Phone: (301) 614-6644

National Park Service (NPS)

  • Rudy D'Alessandro
    Office of International Affairs
    Office Address:
    1201 Eye St, NW 5th Floor, Room 5
    Mailing Address:
    1849 C Street, NW Mail Stop 0050
    Washington, DC 20240 USA
    Phone: (202) 354-1805
    Fax: (202) 371-1446

Observatoire Satellital des Forêts d'Afrique Centrale (OSFAC)

  • Dr. Landing MANE
    OSFAC Director
    14, Sergent Moke - Q/ Socimat
    Concession Safricas - Ngaliema / Kinshasa
    Phone: (+243)99 278 3035

Pact - Building Capacity Worldwide

PACT logo
  • Pact
    1828 L Street, Suite 300
    Washington, DC 20036, USA
    Phone: (202) 466-5666

Smithsonian Institution (SI)

  • Alfonso Alonso
    Office Address:
    1100 Jefferson Drive SW #3123
    Mailing address:
    PO Box 37012, Q-3123 MRC 705
    Washington, DC 20013 USA
    Phone: (202) 633-4780
    Fax: (202) 786-2557

United States Agency for International Development (USAID)

  • Son Nguyen
    CARPE Acting Director
    USAID - Kinshasa
    Office Address:
    198 Isiro Ave., Kinshasa, Gombe, DRC
    Mailing Address:
    2220 Kinshasa Pl
    Dulles, VA 20189
    Phone: (243) 81-949-5295

United States Department of Agriculture Forest Service - International Programs

  • Richard PATON
    Central Africa and Middle East Regional Advisor
    US Forest Service International Programs
    One Thomas Circle, Suite 400
    Washington, DC 20005 USA
    Phone: (202) 294-0722

United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)

  • Dirck Byler
    Chief, Africa Programs
    U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service International Affairs
    5275 Leesburg Pike
    Falls Church, VA 22041-3803 USA
    Phone: (703) 358-2337
    Cell: (703) 485-5227

University of Maryland

  • Matt HANSEN
    Principal Investigator
    Department of Geographical Sciences
    2181 LeFrak Hall
    College Park, MD 20742 USA
    Phone: (301) 405-9714
    Fax: (301) 314-9299
  • Alice ALTSTATT
    Project Manager
    Department of Geographical Sciences
    4321 Hartwick Rd., Suite 410
    College Park, MD 20740 USA
    Phone: (301) 405-6170

Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)

  • Chief of Party
    Alastair MCNEILAGE
    Phone: (+243)(0)99 657 4558

    Kirstin SIEX
    Deputy Director Director, Africa Program
    2300 Southern Blvd
    Bronx, NY 10460-1099 USA
    Phone: (718) 220-5887
    Fax: (718) 364-4275

WorldFish Center

  • Ann Gordon
    P.O. Box 1261, Maadi 11728
    Cairo, Egypt
    Phone: 00 20 2 736 4114 x114

World Resources Institute (WRI)

  • Chief of Party
    Brad MULLEY
    Phone: (+243) 82 206 4750

  • Headquarters
    Matthew STEIL
    10 G St, NE Suite 800
    Washington, DC 20002 USA
    Phone: (202) 729 7762

  • Lauren Goers WILLIAMS
    10 G St, NE Suite 800
    Washington, DC 20002 USA

World Wildlife Fund (WWF)

  • Chief of Party
    Jordan KIMBALL
    Phone: US (202)495-4359 / DRC (+243) 97 262 1620

  • Headquarters
    Director, Congo Basin
    1250 24th St. NW, 6th Fl
    Washington, DC 20037 USA
    Phone: (202) 495-4655 / (202) 280-4034
    Phone DRC: (+243) 82 039 3709

Zoological Society of Milwaukee

  • Gay Edwards Reinartz
    10005 W. Blue Mound Road
    Milwaukee, WI 53226 USA
    Phone: +81 508 0026 or (414) 276-0339

Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP)

The Congo Basin Forest Partnership is an association of over 70 governments, institutions, organizations and private sector partners working to coordinate efforts to sustain the forest resources of the Congo Basin.

The CBFP was launched as a multi-stakeholder partnership at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa. The partnership aims to enhance natural resource management and improve the standard of living in the Congo Basin. The CBFP recognizes the Central Africa Forest Commission (COMIFAC) as the central policy and decision-making body for conservation and management of Central African forests.

The CBFP was initially facilitated by the U.S. from 2003-2004, by France from 2005-2007, by Germany from 2008-2010 and by Canada from 2010-12. The U.S. assumed facilitation again, for the period 2013-15. Members of the partnership meet biannually to coordinate priority activities, to propose action on emerging issues and to share information with partners and networks active in the region.

For more information and the latest CBFP developments, please visit the CBFP website at: http://www.pfbc-cbfp.org/

Observatoire Satellital des Forêts d'Afrique Centrale (OSFAC)

OSFAC was started following a 2000 meeting in Libreville that brought together representatives of forestry and mapping agencies from across Central Africa. At the meeting, participants recognized the important role satellite data and products play in the efficient management of natural resources, but acknowledged there were many constraints to using satellite data in the Congo Basin. Participants proposed creating OSFAC as a regional forum to address these obstacles, which included: difficulties associated with data acquisition, a lack of permanent training institutions and limited capacity to apply satellite information.

OSFAC's primary objective is to establish itself as an independent organization dedicated to using satellite data to detect and manage environmental change in the Congo Basin. It aims to contribute to COMIFAC's Convergence Plan by producing reliable and useful land cover products for managers and decision-makers.

For more information on OSFAC please visit the OSFAC website at:http://www.osfac.net/index.php?lang=en

Central African Forests Commission (COMIFAC)

The Central African Forests Commission (COMIFAC) is the primary authority for decision-making and coordination of sub-regional actions and initiatives pertaining to the conservation and sustainable management of the Congo Basin forests.

COMIFAC is made up of the forestry ministers of participating Central African countries and is under the head of a secretariat. The legal basis for the Commission was laid in 1999 when the heads of state of the Republic of the Congo, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Sao Tome/Principe, Gabon, and the Central African Republic convened and produced the Yaoundé Declaration. The Declaration recognizes the protection of the Congo Basin's ecosystems as an integral component of the development process and reaffirms the signatories' commitments to work cooperatively to promote the sustainable use of the Congo ecosystem in accordance with their social, economic, and environmental agendas.

Since its formation, COMIFAC has met regularly to discuss its agenda and develop an official Plan de Convergence, an action plan that identifies COMIFAC priorities. Based on COMIFAC's Plan de Convergence (2003-2010), the CBFP identifies its major themes as: harmonization of forest policy and taxation, inventory of flora and fauna, ecosystem management, conservation of biodiversity, sustainable use of natural resources, capacity building and community participation, research, and innovative financing mechanisms.

Since 1999, the signatories of the Yaoundé Declaration have also worked to overcome variances and formalize their commitments in a treaty. To this end, in February of 2005 a landmark conference was held in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo. At this conference an official treaty was signed by the heads of state of the Cameroon, the Central African Republic, the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Chad, Sao Tome/Principe, Burundi, and Rwanda. The signatories to the Treaty do not correlate directly with the members of CBFP, but the Treaty demonstrates the active nature of the forestry dialogue in Central Africa of which both the CBFP and COMIFAC play an integral part.

For more information on COMIFAC, please visit the COMIFAC website at: http://www.comifac.org/

Congo Basin

The CARPE program is directly concerned with the sustainable management of the Congo Basin forest ecosystem.

The Congo Basin forest spans across much of Central Africa and is the second largest area of contiguous moist tropical forest left in the world. It covers an area of approximately 1.8 million square kilometers from the Atlantic Ocean's Gulf of Guinea to the mountains of the Albertine Rift. 80% of the forests range in altitude from 300 to 1,000 m and forms the catchment basin of the Congo River.

Representing approximately one fifth of the world's remaining closed canopy tropical forest; the Congo Basin forest is of local, regional, and global environmental significance. The forest serves as critical habitat for biodiversity conservation (home to three of the world's four species of great apes) and provides vital regional and global ecological services. The forest also represents a rich resource in terms of food, shelter, and livelihoods for the over 60 million inhabitants ofthe region. The sustainable management of these resources is seen as critical to the economic development of the region.

The Congo Basin forests, which play a major economic role and ecological role as a carbon sink and a catchment basin, are at risk from a complex set of threats. While much of the forest currently remains intact, many factors contribute to its continual loss. These factors include proximate threats from the persistent unsustainable extraction of timber and mineral resources, agricultural expansion, an active bushmeat trade, poor management, and increasing pressure due to population growth. In addition, the forests of the Congo Basin are vulnerable to more ultimate threats related to regional poverty, weak governance, and civil unrest.


CARPE was initiated as a regional program because the Congo Basin forest is not contained within a single country, but instead represents a contiguous area of tropical forest that acts as the catchment basin for the Congo River.

The forest spans Central Africa and working to promote its sustainable management involves engaging and supporting cooperation and collaboration between numerous countries.

CARPE is currently working within the following African countries; Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Republic of Congo, Rwanda, and Sao Tome & Principe. The governments of these countries have established their willingness to create a meaningful regional forest dialogue by becoming members of the Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC).

CARPE's engagement in each of these countries differs according to their needs and CARPE priorities. CARPE's strategic objective addresses building natural resource management capacity at the local, national, and regional scale. In many of CARPE's partner countries the capacity to sustainably manage natural resources is being improved locally through CARPE's Landscape Programs. At the country scale, CARPE supports many programs to institutionalize natural resource monitoring and strengthen natural resource governance.


The majority of CARPE funds are allocated to support activities in designated landscapes. By implementing a landscape approach to natural resource management, CARPE works to assure that conservation activities are integrated into commercial forest exploitation activities, and address the unsustainable environmental practices of a myriad of local communities subsisting throughout the tropical forest landscapes.

CARPE currently works within 12 key biodiversity landscapes in seven countries. Several of CARPE's landscapes are transboundary and are recognized by international agreements promoting cooperation on environmental monitoring and law enforcement. These 12 landscapes form the pillar of CARPE's regional conservation strategy and cover an area of 680,300 km2.

CARPE landscapes were identified as appropriate conservation targets at a 2000 Conservation Priority-Setting Workshop for Central Africa. The workshop was organized by the World Wildlife Fund and brought together over 160 biologists and socio-economic experts to carry out a region-wide evaluation. The 12 landscapes were recognized as priority areas for conservation based on their relative taxonomic importance, their overall integrity, and the resilience of ecological processes represented. In accordance with principles of integrated conservation initiatives and broad-scale land management, each landscape is divided into different categories of management areas, including: protected areas, community-based natural resource management zones, and extractive zones. Within these zones, CARPE and its partners are working to implement sustainable natural resource management practices at the local scale.

Click on the map or tabs below to see additional information about individual landscapes

CARPE base map
Monte Alen-Monts de Cristal Gamba-Mayumba-Conkouati Lope-Chaillu-Louesse Leconi-Bateke-Lefini Dja-Minkebe-Odzala Tri National (Tridom) Sangha Tri National Lac Tele-Lac Tumba Maringa-Lopori-Wamba Salonga-Lukenie-Sankuru Ituri-Epulu-Aru Maiko-Tayna-Kahuzi-Biega Virunga