UNEP Releases Post-Conflict Assessment Report of Rwanda

UNEP Releases Post-Conflict Assessment Report of Rwanda16 November 2011: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has led a comprehensive, national-scale post-conflict environmental assessment of Rwanda. The resulting report on Rwanda's post-conflict sustainable development urges the country to create opportunities for a transition towards a green economy.

The assessment report, titled "Rwanda: From Post-Conflict to Environmentally Sustainable Development," was released in Kigali by the Minister of Natural Resources of Rwanda, Stanislas Kamanzi, at the opening of a regional meeting aimed at enhancing the capacity in East African countries to use the green economy as a driver for sustainable development and poverty reduction. Over 40 legal and technical experts from Burundi, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and Rwanda, met to identify actions, opportunities and challenges for integrating green economy in policies and legislation at national and regional levels.

The report analyzes the most pressing environmental issues and offers a series of interventions that would help the country accelerate its sustainable development agenda. Some of the findings include that: reforestation efforts have helped raise forest cover to around 20% of the country's surface area; and the government should reinforce its policies and investments in large-scale ecosystem rehabilitation, renewable energies, sustainable agriculture and agroforestry.

The report highlights that restoring ecosystem integrity would help build the coping capacity of the very poor in view of Rwanda's high vulnerability to climate change and disasters. The assessment also underscores the importance of regional cooperation in key areas, including the promotion of: joint investments in the energy and water sectors; sustainable trade in forest resources; transboundary management of protected areas; and regional level initiatives in responding to the challenges posed by disasters, climate change and food security. [UNEP Press Release] [UN Press Release] [Publication: Rwanda - From Post-Conflict to Environmentally Sustainable Development]