KAMPALA — Leading roof windows manufacturer, Velux Group is throwing it weight — and wealth — behind the fight against climate change in Uganda—months after the US also announced a whopping UGX 80b investment in country’s biodiversity programme.
Velux Group CEO David Briggs on Monday announced a 21-year partnership with World Wild Fund (WWF) in to restore the country’s biodiversity by 2041.
Announcing the commitment to becoming the lifetime carbon neutral for a sustainable future for all, Mr. Briggs said this is part of his company’s long-standing commitment to protecting and promoting biodiversity in Uganda.
Mr. Briggs didn’t disclose how much his company will invest in the program but said the initiative will address reforestation, wildlife protection, water preservation and reducing carbon emission ‘dramatically’.
The Velux Group will work with WWF to become Lifetime Carbon Neutral by investing in forest and biodiversity projects over the next 21 years.
Uganda’s incredible biodiversity is both a global treasure and a key to the country’s economic growth and long-term stability.
Nature-based tourism accounts for seven percent of GDP and in 2018 alone created more than 650,000 jobs.
At the same time, protected areas are under unprecedented pressure from human populations, which increasingly exposes communities to wildlife.
Mr. David Duli, the WWF Uganda Country head lauded the collaboration.
He said the partnership is a huge boost to the country’s biodiversity recovery programme, noting that it will halt habitat loss, deforestation and land degradation threatening the biodiversity of forest ecosystems in Uganda.
Mr Duli whose organization’s work is prominently visible especially in western Uganda said the country’s focus will be on restoring degraded forests, growing new forests, and protecting the remaining natural forests through a broad range of measures.
“The project will also grow trees in woodlots, other agroforestry systems, and plantations outside protected areas to meet demand for various forest products and reduce pressure on natural forests,” he elaborated.
Several other multinationals with footprints in Uganda have committed to bringing their operations in line with the goals of the 2015 Paris climate accord, in some cases following campaigns by conservationists such as WWF.
Key among others, Nile Breweries Hima cement, ResponsAbility and Absa Bank
Ms. Rita Kyategeka, the head of communications, at WWF Uganda says that owing to the swelling impacts of the climate, a bold action is urgently needed to build a more resilient and sustainable future for all.