As reported by Ecofin, the French Embassy in Gabon has announced the construction of a classroom in the trees at the Raponda Walker Arboretum, on the Cap Estérias road north of Libreville, to strengthen tourism and preserve the forest.
Financed with funds from the debt conversion agreement signed between Gabon and France, this 14-meter high infrastructure is entirely made of padouk timber and has a double objective. On the one hand, it is an educational approach for the benefit of the young generations who will come to visit the classroom with their school, and on the other hand, an environmental awareness for the general public who would like to discover the natural resources of the country.
The construction of this room is part of the "Arc d'Emeraude" project implemented by the French Development Agency (AFD) and the National Agency for National Parks (ANPN), worth 12 million euros, recalls Le Nouveau Gabon. The objective of this project is to ensure the preservation of coastal ecosystems and protected areas in the Libreville region, which includes the Akanda National Park, the Pongara National Park and the Raponda Walker Arboretum.
The Raponda Walker Arboretum (ex- MONDAH forest) is a protected forest managed by the ANPN which offers a great biodiversity. With an area of 6,747 ha, this tourist site enables to observe all the timber species of the Gabonese flora. The building houses a platform of 100 m² that will offer visitors informative and educational content on the fauna and flora of the rainforest.
"In order to conserve our forests for future generations, young people must begin to embrace the idea of conservation. Conservation should not remain a vague concept, but a reality. This awareness is achieved through environmental education through awareness workshops on equatorial forests," said the Arboretum's site curator.