AWF Partners with Planet Action in Samburu Heartland

AWF Partners with Planet Action in Samburu Heartland

The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) through its Samburu Heartland is pleased to partner with Planet Action, a not-for-profit collaborative initiative launched by Spot Image, a world leader in satellite imagery.

The Samburu landscape, located north of the equator and east of the Great Rift Valley in central Kenya, is a semi-arid area with a mosaic of land ownership from extensive private ranches, large pastoralist area and state-owned National Parks and wildlife game reserves. AWF has identified significant information gaps regarding the current distribution of settlements, cultivation, and socio-economic infrastructures that impact mobility for pastoralists and wildlife and figure prominently in conservation planning.

With the support of Planet Action, AWF is using the latest satellite imagery to generate a comprehensive view of the distribution of open/wildlife areas, land use, and socio-economic resources as a basis for creating a network of public and private conservation areas that would maintain wildlife migration routes and accessibility to grazing and wildlife resources for pastoralists. The detailed mapping will be used to generate scenarios of future land use that integrate climate change projections.

"Through analysis and application of the latest geo-spacial understanding of the landscape, Planet Action will help us chart the trajectory of the land use--climate change dynamic and prioritize key open areas and movement routes,' says David Williams, AWF Program Director of Conservation Geography.

The project's main outcomes will include:

Models of current and predicted species habitat suitability, grazing area suitability, and associated corridors. Predicted models will incorporate land use/land cover changes driven by population growth and climate change.

Accurate baseline information profiling the status of key species, wildlife and pastoralist movement corridors, and human distribution in the conservation zone enabling change to be monitored over time.

The addition of important climate-related dimensions to land use and natural resource management plans. Increased capacity and access for AWF and conservation partners in Samburu thanks to the up-to-date imagery and impetus for specific attention to climate change.

Elaboration and integration of climate-related indicators into AWF's existing monitoring and evaluation system for the Samburu Heartland.

Read about the AWF-Planet Action partnership in Planet Action's Winter 2010 Newsletter.

Learn more about the Samburu Heartland.