North Luangwa National Park awarded for conservation excellence

At COP15 in Montreal, Canada, the IUCN announced that North Luangwa National Park is the first Park in Zambia to be part of its Green List, which recognizes protected areas that have been fairly governed, effectively managed and that respect local communities through fair and meaningful engagement.

12/15/2022, Kasia Rabel

With around 261,766 officially recognized protected areas worldwide, the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Green List provides an important global benchmark for how these areas meet the environmental challenges of the 21st century and the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals.

Currently, there are 61 protected areas on the Green List with 16 new ones added during COP15 UN Biodiversity Conference that took place from 7-19 December 2022 in Montreal, Canada, including North Luangwa National Park in Zambia. Each site was chosen by their countries as the best examples of areas that respect local communities through fair and meaningful engagement of rights-holders and stakeholders with plans that identify the need to secure important values in the area, that are effectively managed, can showcase successful conservation results for people and nature and clearly contribute to overcoming global challenges such as climate change.

North Luangwa National Park is home to Zambia’s largest, most stable and only increasing elephant population. © Daniel Rosengren
North Luangwa National Park is home to Zambia’s only black rhino population, which continues to show one of the highest growth rates in Africa. © Daniel Rosengren
The North Luangwa Conservation Project supports the creation of Community Conservation Banks (COCOBAs), a micro finance system where small local groups invest money in the bank. They can also borrow money with interest for startup or equipment investments in eco-friendly businesses. Each year, investors in the bank get a share related to their investment out of the profit of the bank. © Daniel Rosengren
The North Luangwa National Park canine unit is used for anti-poaching purposes. The dogs are trained to sniff out rhino horn, pangolin scales, and ammunition. © Mana Meadows
A view of North Luangwa National Park. © Mana Meadows

Benefits to North Luangwa

The Green List accreditation brings to light North Luangwa’s well-established governance, planning, and management. As well as its proven successful conservation outcomes, such as those relating to black rhino protection. This gives it an extra level of recognition.

As stated by Ed Sayer, North Luangwa Conservation Project Leader, “We are really pleased to have completed the Green Listing process and hope that this status will offer our funders a level of assurance of our fair and effective conservation measures and that this accreditation will result in reduced reporting to donors as well as increased opportunities to access funding over longer periods of time.”

Next steps

Every five years North Luangwa National Park will need to re-submit its Green List application in order to continue being on the list. This re-evaluation ensures that each protected area on the list continues to demonstrate and maintain performance and deliver real nature conservation results.

Currently, five other protected areas in Zambia are working towards Green List accreditation, including FZS-supported Nsumbu National Park in northern Zambia.


Zoologische Gesellschaft Frankfurt von 1858 e.V.
Bernhard-Grzimek-Allee 1
60316 Frankfurt

Telephone: +49 (0)69 - 94 34 46 0
Fax: +49 (0)69 - 43 93 48

You will find our office in the Zoogesellschaftshaus (1st floor).