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Summit on Sustainability in Africa

7 May 2012 (Gaborone, Botswana/Washington, DC U.S.):  The Government of Botswana in partnership with Conservation International will host the first-ever Summit for Sustainability in Africa from 24 to 25 May 2012, to initiate a vital dialogue with African governments and other leading businesses and institutions about the opportunities, risks and rewards that will come with increased international investment and commitment to sustainable management of Africa’s rich and renewable natural capital – or the wealth of services provided to people by healthy ecosystems. The Summit is designed to provide a roadmap for African countries and their development partners to align in the pursuit of sustainability agendas in development planning.

Much of Africa’s natural capital - its landscapes, watersheds, seascapes and biodiversity - is poised to become globally important in the production of energy, food, and numerous commodities, as the global population surges to nine billion in the next four decades. Vital to the long term viability and productivity of Africa’s natural capital however, will be integrated management that takes a long term and holistic view of the benefits and tradeoffs of intensified production and emphasizes the importance of resource renewability for access by future generations.

A key focus of this Summit will therefore be to facilitate focused dialogue, guidance and coordinated support to leaders - both in Africa and abroad - which will serve as the foundation for strategies that seed long term economic growth, reduction in poverty, food and water security, resilience to climate stresses, and protection of the continent’s natural and cultural heritage. 

His Excellency the President of the Republic of Botswana, Lieutenant General Seretse Khama Ian Khama will be the keynote speaker. Other esteemed African leaders and visionaries expected to attend and address the Summit include:

• Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President, Liberia
• His Excellency Paul Kagame, President, Rwanda
• His Excellency Jakaya Kikwete, President, Tanzania
• His Excellency Ali Bongo Ondimba, President, Gabon
• His Excellency Aires Ali, Prime Minister, Mozambique

It is expected that the Summit will highlight the importance of forging healthy sustainable economies that are built on policies and long-term economic plans that understand, account for, and value the wealth of nature in Africa. It is intended to be a results-driven gathering with African nations at the helm that will provide investment partners the opportunity to offer support in a deliberate and tangible way. The Summit is also expected to address key issues for the upcoming Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. Outcomes will be demonstrated through the adoption of the Gaborone Declaration: a declaration that will outline principles and points of engagement for actionable next steps in supporting sustainability in Africa.

What:  A Summit for Sustainability in Africa
hosted by the Government of Botswana  and Conservation International 
When:  May 24, 2012 - May 25, 2012

Where: The Gaborone International Convention Centre
Bonnington Farm, Molepolole Road, Gaborone, Botswana.
Private Bag BR105, Gaborone, Botswana.

Other esteemed speakers include Ministers from Norway, Ethiopia  Kenya, Ghana and South Africa, and;

• Sam Dryden, Director of Agricultural Development, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
• Dr. Richard Haass, President, Council on Foreign Relations
• Peter Kulielski, Group Management Board Member and CEO, Mining, ArcelorMittal
• Rachel Kyte, Vice President, Sustainable Development, The World Bank
• Barry F. Lowenkron, Vice President of International Programs, MacArthur Foundation
• Grant Pattison, Chief Executive Officer, Massmart, South Africa
• Jurgen Rigterink, Chief Investment Officer, FMO
• Pavan Sukhdev, Chief Investment, FMO
• Simon Susman, CEO, Woolworth’s Holding Limited

Twitter:  follow @ConservationOrg;  hashtags: #sustainafrica, #SSA12
Live webstream:  http://www.asummitforsustainabilityinafrica.org
Summit Website: http://www.conservation.org/ssa


Journalists Requesting Credentials:


To apply for press access to attend the Summit, including press conferences, please register at: http://www.conservation.org/conferences/africa_sustainability_summit/Pages/ssa_gaborone_botswana.aspx  - or email Jeannie Kim at Chris Wayne + Associates: jkim@cwassocs.com

For all other press inquiries, please contact:

For the Government of Botswana:  Charmaine Muir-Revaka, Director, Media Relations, Ministry of State President; crevaka@gov.bw / (00267) 313 3048

For Conservation International:  Kim McCabe, Senior Director, News Strategy & Media Relations, kmccabe@conservation.org / +1 (703) 341-2546

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