Saturday, June 25, 2022

A President and Forest Elephants

Environmental & Science Education, STEM, Biodiversity, Global Change, Wildlife, Sustainability

Ed Hessler

This short video (2m 33s) from the BBC tells the story of how the country of Gabon (now the Gabomese Republic) saved its forest elephants while likely conserving and preserving other biodiversity.

At a meeting, President Omar Bongo turned to minster and asked "Why did nobody ever tell me that we had these wildlife treasures in Gabon." Not many heads of state refer to wildlife as treasures, certainly at the time. President Bongo set a course to change that. 

Bongo was the second president of Gabon, administering the country for 42 years and died while in office. (December 1935 to June 8 2009)-- a long period of peace and stability. He was a short man but one of towering stature. The Wiki entry has the details.

Two remarkable individuals made a difference as shown in this film: President Bongo and wildlife biologist, the Brit, Lee White.

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