USAID greatly expanded the Central Africa Regional Program for the Environment (CARPE) in 2003 to ensure the unambiguous commitment of the US Government to the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP), a US Presidential initiative announced at the International Summit for Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa in 2002. CARPE was subsequently provided with significant financial and technical resources in support of this international initiative to conserve the planet’s second largest tropical rainforest – and its threatened biodiversity. CARPE has assembled an impressive network of implementing partners including a large number of international conservation NGOs (WCS, AWF, WWF) and U.S. federal agencies (i.e. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Park Service, Geological Service, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Forest Service, and Foreign Agricultural Service).
Since 2006, USAID CARPE has invested over 20 million USD in the Salonga Landscape. Program implementation has been assured by a consortium of recognized international NGO’s including WWF, WCS, PACT, and ZSM. CARPE funds have enabled the continued provision of support to national park protection, ecological monitoring, combating wildlife crimes and trade, as well as support to communities and local livelihoods around the park – part of an “integrated conservation and development approach”.