Shell Gabon, the first sub-Saharan oil company to be ISO 14001-certified (since 2000), operates along the borders of two National Parks, in the area between Moukalaba Ndouguou Park and Loango Park, in the protected areas of Gamba also known as the “industrial corridor”.
This is a buffer zone where, according to studies carried out since 2007 by the Smithsonian Institution in partnership with Shell Gabon, the biodiversity is one of the richest of all of Central Africa’s tropical forest plains, and it is also a natural habitat for numerous elephant populations.
Shell Gabon, a pioneer oil company in the region, is investing and supporting programmes for the preservation of biodiversity and the protection of elephants, working closely with the Directorate-General for the Environment (DGE), the National Parks Agency (Agence des Parcs Nationaux - ANPN) and local NGOs, particularly on anti-poaching measures, biodiversity awareness campaigns for local communities, scientific research and the resolution of problems relating to human and elephant interactions.
As an example of coexistence, there is a remarkable ambience in Gamba, where Shell Gabon staff live alongside elephants. “It’s amazing to see these pachyderms calmly striding along the roads in our camp,”said a Shell Gabon employee who lives in Yenzi Camp (Shell’s residential camp in Gamba). “I don’t know of anywhere else in the world where you can work, live an ordinary family life and see animals like this so close up every day.’’