From: Christina Filipovic, Justmeans, More from this Affiliate
Published February 15, 2011 08:17 AM

Serengeti World Heritage Site in Grave Danger as Tanzanian Government Moves Forward With Highway

Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete directly contradicted his own government's study by claiming that a planned highway in the Serengeti National Park will not be the environmental disaster conservationists and scientists are claiming it to be.


Speaking to the World Bank, President Kikwete gave the green light to the controversial highway project, saying that the "road to the south would not solve transport challenges of communities living on the northern side of the park." He once again claimed that "no tarmac road will be built through the Serengeti"-- an oft-cited statement designed to distract from the real issue at hand.

This impressive site is at risk of vanishing forever, as the Tanzanian government moves forward with the ill-conceived plan of building a major commercial highway across the Serengeti migration path, against the advice of concerned scientists and environmentalists around the world who point out the significant loss of wildlife and environmental degradation the project will cause. The Frankfurt Zoological Society explains:

We sincerely believe that the road will have disastrous effects on the entire ecosystem. The northern parts of the Serengeti and the adjacent Masai Mara are critical for the wildebeest and zebra migration during the dry season, as it is the only permanent year-round water source for these herds.

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