First National Conservancy Conference
24 August 2003
Hosted by the Gauteng Conservancy Association
The first national conference of conservancies was held at Dinokeng’s De Tweedespruit Conservancy east of Pretoria. Speakers included Khulani Mkhize, chief executive of Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife, Clive Walker, chairman of the Wilderness Trust and a founder of the Waterberg Biosphere, Saliem Fakir, Director of the South African office of the IUCN (World Conservation Body) and Dr Bob Scholes, a leading systems ecologist based at the CSIR.
National conference launches new private
More than 170 delegates from governmental and non-governmental conservation organisations covering all nine provinces formed a National Conservancy Association at the weekend to establish a national voice for private conservation initiatives.
The first steering committee of the National Conservancy Association was elected at the weekend conference to drive private conservation initiatives in the nine provinces and bring together all communities in a drive to improve environmental and life quality.
Conservancies are voluntary, initiatives by private people who decide to work together for balanced conservation and development of the areas in which they live. In order to be formally recognised, conservancies have to be registered with their local conservation authorities. There are about 600 registered conservancies in South Africa covering well over double the area managed by official conservation bodies.
In his opening speech to the conference, Mkhize stressed the need to reinforce a conservation ethic that balances people, development, bio-diversity and conservation for future generations in the environments in which all communities are living.
Dr Scholes urged a changing of the binary thinking about conservation and to recognise that bio-diversity today covers the continuum from wilderness to urban and industrial areas. It is up to the conservancy movement to collectively use its growing power to promote the balanced conservation of these areas.
Fakir stressed the need to manage the diversity of views around conservation and to rethink old paradigms so that conservation “enriches the life of communities”.
Download the Key Note speakers papers, delegate list and programme.
They are in PDF format
Please be aware that some of these files take a long time to download
A professional audio CD and all speakers details was made of this conference. Unfortunately no professional CD's are left, but if you require one we will make a copy and mail it to you