Text: H.R.2264 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)
Public Law No: 108-200 (02/13/2004)
[108th Congress Public Law 200]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
CONGO BASIN FOREST PARTNERSHIP ACT OF 2004
[[Page 118 STAT. 458]]
Public Law 108-200
To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 2004 to carry out the Congo
Basin Forest Partnership program, and for other purposes. <<NOTE: Feb.
13, 2004 - [H.R. 2264]>>
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America in Congress <<NOTE: Congo Basin Forest
Partnership Act of 2004.>> assembled,
SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
This Act may be cited as the ``Congo Basin Forest Partnership Act of
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
Congress finds the following:
(1) The tropical forests of the Congo Basin, located in the
Central African countries of Cameroon, the Central African
Republic, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial
Guinea, Gabon, the Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Burundi, and Sao
Tome/Principe, are second in size only to the tropical forests
of the Amazon Basin.
(2) These forests are a crucial economic resource for the
people of the Central African region.
(3) Congo Basin forests play a critical role in sustaining
the environment--absorbing carbon dioxide, cleansing water, and
(4) Congo Basin forests contain the most diverse grouping of
plants and animals in Africa, including rare and endangered
species, such as the lowland gorilla, mountain gorilla,
chimpanzee, and okapi. These plants and animals are invaluable
for many reasons, including their genetic and biochemical
information, which could spark advances in medical,
agricultural, and industrial technology.
(5) Logging operations, driven by a growing global demand
for tropical hardwoods, are shrinking these forests. One
estimate has logging taking out Congo Basin forest area at a
rate of twice the size of the State of Rhode Island every year.
(6) The construction of logging roads and other developments
are putting intense hunting pressure on wildlife. At current
hunting levels, most species of apes and other primates, large
antelope, and elephants will disappear from the Congo Basin,
with some becoming extinct.
(7) If current deforestation and wildlife depletion rates
are not reversed, the six countries of the Congo Basin most
immediately, but also the world, will pay an immense economic,
environmental, and cultural price.
(8) The United States has an interest in seeing political
stability and economic development advance in the Congo Basin
[[Page 118 STAT. 459]]
countries. This interest will be adversely impacted if current
deforestation and wildlife depletion rates are not reversed.
(9) Poorly managed and nonmanaged logging and hunting
threatens to do to the Congo Basin what it did to West Africa,
which lost much of its forest and wildlife through over-
(10) Purged of wildlife, some Congo Basin forests already
are ``empty forests''.
(11) In an attempt to conserve the forests of the Congo
Basin, the region's governments convened the Yaounde (Cameroon)
Forest Summit in March 1999.
(12) In September 2002, Secretary of State Colin Powell
launched the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP) in
Johannesburg, South Africa. The CBFP promotes the conservation
and sustainable use of the region's forests, for example, by
working to combat poaching, illegal logging, and other
unsustainable practices, and giving local populations an
economic stake in the preservation of the forests, including
through the development of ecotourism.
(13)(A) The United States contribution to the CBFP will
focus on conserving 11 key landscapes in 6 countries--Cameroon,
the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of the
Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and the Republic of Congo--
identified at the Yaounde Forest Summit as being of the greatest
biological importance to the region.
(B) The United States will fund field-based activities
within these 25,000,000 acres that aim to support a network of
27 national parks and protected areas and well-managed forestry
(C) In this way, the work will build on existing United
States efforts, including those of the Central African Regional
Program for the Environment (CARPE) of the United States Agency
for International Development, which will implement the CBFP.
(14) The CBFP has broad international financial support,
including from non-African governments, the European Commission,
the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and
numerous nongovernment organizations.
(15) A dramatic step toward conserving Congo Basin forests
has recently been taken by Gabon. In September 2002, President
Omar Bongo announced the creation of 13 national parks,
representing over 10 percent of Gabon's surface area.
Previously, Gabon had no national park system.
(16) With the CBFP and other initiatives, there exists
unprecedented momentum for the conservation of Congo Basin
SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.
(a) In General.--There are authorized to be appropriated to the
President to carry out the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP) program
$18,600,000 for fiscal year 2004.
(b) CARPE.--Of the amounts appropriated pursuant to the
authorization of appropriations in subsection (a), $16,000,000 is
authorized to be made available to the Central Africa Regional Program
for the Environment (CARPE) of the United States Agency for
[[Page 118 STAT. 460]]
(c) Availability.--Amounts appropriated pursuant to the
authorization of appropriations under subsection (a) are authorized to
remain available until expended.
Approved February 13, 2004.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 2264:
Vol. 149 (2003):
Oct. 7, considered and passed House.
Dec. 9, considered and passed
Vol. 150 (2004):
Feb. 3, House concurred in Senate