World Bank offers to help fund the cost of road if it avoids bitterly opposed route through the Serengeti National Park
A controversial road through the Serengeti, one of the world’s most famous migratory routes, may be re-routed with funding from the World Bank.
Tanzania’s plans for a 480-kilometre road to link up the east of the country with Lake Victoria were to be routed through the Serengeti National Park for around 50 kilometres. The government said it would bring ‘essential economic development’ to the region and allow the transport of newly discovered Ugandan oil to Tanzanian ports in the East.
However, environmental groups and scientists claim the Serengeti route would intersect the path of the renowed ‘great migration’ where millions of wildebeest, gazelle and zebra migrate annually from the Tanzanian Serengeti to the Kenyan Masai Mara, in search of water. Wildebeest populations may decline from 1.3 million to 200,000 if the road prevents them from accessing this water, the Frankfurt Zoological Society told the Ecologist.