The Lake Edward and Lake Albert Basin (LEAB) area in DRC and Uganda is endowed with rich surface water fisheries resources that are important for economic growth and social development in the region. More than 12 million people live in this basin, and 73 percent of them (8.7 million people) depend on fisheries for their livelihoods. Despite the abundant fisheries and water resources of the lakes, riparian communities are not able to sustainably benefit from the natural resources because of: (i) increased siltation and pollution from poor land management in the catchment areas and increased infestation of aquatic weeds which reduce the fishing area, (ii) overfishing, and (iii) high post-harvest fish losses because of lack of rural infrastructures and markets. The project aims to halt deterioration of natural resources and to begin guiding the people of the basin toward sustainable natural resource management and protection of the environment as well as promotion of alternative income sources and diversification of welfare to the benefit of riparian communities in both countries. The project hopes to reduce poverty notably by sustainably increasing the productivity of the fisheries sub-sector through promotion of sustainable management of capture fisheries and will restore the lakes catchments and water quality and ensure sustainable monitoring of the shared resources.
The Project has 3 components:
- Fisheries Development & Management - This component consists on promoting sustainable management and productivity of the various species of fish in the two Lakes for the common benefit of the two countries. It comprises 4 main sub components: Monitoring, Control and Surveillance; Development of a Fisheries Management Information System; Fishery Conservation, Breeding Sites Preservation; and Capacity Building; and Development of Alternative Livelihoods options, particularly for the women beneficiaries.
- Integrated Water Resources Management - This component consists on managing the LEAB water resources in integrated and sustainable approaches and comprises 4 closely related sub components: Catchment and wetland management; Enhancement of trans-boundary Lakes management Coordination; Water Resources monitoring and Assessment; and Navigation and Maritime Safety
- Project Management and Coordination - This component will facilitate the coordination of project implementation by individual countries, and implementing regional activities.