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August 9, 2022
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DRC to auction oil and gas permits in endangered gorilla habitat

Sale calls into question protection deal signed at Cop26 as expert warns Congo auction could be a catastrophe for wildlife, health and climate

The Democratic Republic of the Congo has announced it will auction oil and gas permits in critically endangered gorilla habitat and the world’s largest tropical peatlands next week. The sale raises concerns about the credibility of a forest protection deal signed with the country by Boris Johnson at Cop26.

On Monday, hydrocarbons minister Didier Budimbu said the DRC was expanding an auction of oil exploration blocks to include two sites that overlap with Virunga national park, a Unesco world heritage site home to Earth’s last remaining mountain gorillas.

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