Country study on burkina faso biodiversity conducted by the permanent secretariat of the national council for the management of the environment and the national

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Many national and international institutions are stakeholders in the management of biological resources in Burkina Faso. First, there are, at the national level, ministerial departments and their decentralised agencies with technical, leadership and organisational roles in the field, but also many integrated rural development NGOs, Programmes and projects and, second, at the international level donors and research and development institutions.

2.7.1 State owned institutions The two ministries in charge respectively of agriculture and animal resources

These two ministries undertake resources management activities through their 12 decentralised agencies constituted by the Regional Centres for the Promotion Agro-pastoral Activities (CRPA) involved in the field with Agricultural Provincial Services (SPA) or Provincial Services of Animal Resources (SPRA).

Similarly, many autonomous Programmes and projects are implemented through the above-mentioned ministries. As far as these Programmes are concerned, one can mention, National Land Management Programme (PNGT), Agricultural Sector Sectoral Adjustment Programme (PASA), etc. The main realised or on-going projects are: PDRI/HKM, the CES/AGF special Programme in the central plateau, the SOUM livestock project, NOUHAO, PATECORE, PDRI/TAPOA and PDRIZORGHO, the NAHOURI Local Development Project, etc. Ministry in charge of Environment and Water

This ministry is the institutional guarantor for the conservation and sustainable use of renewable natural resources. It is particularly involved with environment, forestry and water domains.

As far as forests are concerned, intervention is mainly done by :

  • central agencies, particularly the Permanent Secretariat of the National Council for the Management of the Environment, the Forestry Service and its central technical departments, the General Headquarters of the Protection of the Environment and the National Centre of Forestry Seeds;

  • Regional Departments of the Environment and Forestry whose number is ten (10) with 45 Provincial Services for the Environment and Forestry (SPEEF).

Activities undertaken are part of plans, Programmes and projects such, as the National Action Plan for the Environment (PANE), or “National Action 21”, the National Action Plan for Desertification Control (PNLCD), the Burkinabè Sahel Programme, the Cartographic Tools Project for the Management of the Environment, the Participatory Management Project of Natural and Wildlife Resources, the Biological Diversity Integrated Project of Game Ranching Systems (GEF/Nazinga Project), etc.

In water domain, intervention is made through: 

  • General Headquarters of Hydraulics and its central technical services;

  • ten (10) Regional Water Departments (DRE) whose teams work towards the mobilisation of water resources in order to meet consumption or irrigation needs.

In addition, there are autonomous projects and attached services such:

  • the National Office of Wells and Boreholes (ONPF) and the National Office of Dams and Hydro-agricultural Development (ONBAH) undertaking the realisation of water points and the construction of dams in favour of hydraulics, support measures for natural resources management actions and irrigated agriculture;

  • the Kompienga Contracting Authority and the Bagré Contracting authority which are responsible for the development and hydroelectric exploitation of the water bodies concerned;

  • the Ziga Contracting Authority which has been working for the realisation of a water body which must supply the city of Ouagadougou;

  • the Water and Rural Equipment Fund (FEER) financing CES/DRS actions;

  • the Water and Sanitation National Office. Ministry of Secondary, Higher Education and Scientific Research.

Actions undertaken by this ministerial department in the domain of natural resources management and production systems deal mainly with research. The institutions in charge of research Programmes are as follows :

  • Rural Development Institute (IDR);

  • Health Science Research Institute;

  • The Faculty of Economics and Management of the University of Ouagadougou (FASEG);

  • The Environmental and Agricultural Research Institute (IN.E.R.A.);

  • Institute of Societal Sciences (I.S.S.);

  • The Faculty of Sciences and Techniques (FAST);

  • Research Institute of Applied and Technological Sciences (IRSAT).

Actions are undertaken through plans and Programmes such as the Research Strategic Plan, Programmes of Natural Resources Management Programmes and Production Systems Programmes, Animal Production, Annual Plant Production, Forestry Production, etc. Ministry in charge of Infrastructures, Housing and Urbanisation

The agencies of this ministry involved with the management of natural resources and production system are three:

  • the Department of town planning;

  • the Department of Road infrastructures;

  • the Geographical Institute of Burkina (IGB); Ministry of transport and Tourism

The agencies involved in actions of natural resources management and production system are:

  • the National Department of Meteorology (D.M.N.);

  • the Department in charge of tourism. Ministry of Health

The contribution of this ministry deals with the rational exploitation of medicinal products from flora and fauna. A technical agency, the Department of pharmaceutical services has been assigned this mission. Ministry of Trade and Handicraft

At the level of this ministry, it is mainly the National Commission in charge of Prices which contributes in the domain of the use of biological diversity products. In addition, the Department of Industrial Development, and the Departments of Trade and Economic Affairs Inspection are the most involved in actions in the domain of natural resources and production system particularly concerning :

  • the development and implementation of commercialisation strategies for agricultural commodities and animal export;

  • the development and enforcement of regulations in terms of quality and standard;

  • the main agencies involved with the management of renewable natural resources are :

  • the Mining Department;

  • the Burkina National Electricity company (SONABEL). Ministry of finance.

One (1) institution from this ministerial department, particularly the customs service, is involved with the control of the export of biodiversity products. Ministry in charge the administration of the territory

At this level, the provincial and departmental administrative services are involved.

2.7.2 Non-governmental Organisations and Associations

Many NGOs finance and/or undertake activities within the framework of the management of natural resources in Burkina Faso. In general, their approach is based on the full participation of communities and on techniques applicable by the latter. Among theses NGOs, there are:

  • OXFAM which finances and implements, in collaboration with CRPAs, the Agroforestry Project (PAF) in migrants’ home zones ;

  • Agro-Ecology Project (PAE) which in fact is financed by German NGOs working in collaboration with CRPAs from migrants’ home zones;

  • Paul II Foundation for the Sahel;

  • Nature’s Friends Foundation (NATURAMA);

  • EURO-ACTION ACCORD, donor of the “soils protection and restoration” project in the north;

  • Federation of National Unions of Naam Groups (F.U.N.G.N.);

  • Associations of Burkina Hunters;

  • Associations of Tradi-practitioners;

2.7.3 Traditional institutions

In Burkina Faso, there is practically a customary right over lands, represented by “Land Custodians” and consequently, over biological resources contained in these lands. Thus, land custodians are the traditional guarantors of the management of biological resources.

2.7.4 sub-regioanal and international institutions concerned with or insterested in natural resources management Programmes and production systems Donors

Among the donors, the following may be listed:

  • The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP);

  • The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP);

  • The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO);

  • The United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF);

  • The World Food Programme (WFP)

  • The European Union;

  • The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD);

  • The United Nations Sudano-Sahelian Office (UNSO);

  • The United States Agency for International Development (USAID);

  • The World Bank (WB);

  • The French Development Fund;

  • The African Development Bank (ADB);

  • The West African Development Bank (WADB);

  • Bilateral co-operations (e.g. : Canadian Agency for International Development, Swiss Cooperation, Dutch Cooperation)

  • etc. Sub-regional and international Institutions and/or organisations

The sub-regional and international institutions involved in the management of biological resources and production system are :



The sustainable management of species and populations has always been a concern in Burkina Faso. In order to attain these objectives, legislative and regulatory measures have been taken in favour of both species and natural formations and the country’s development. However, a lot of measures are now confronted with enforcement difficulties.

2.8.1 legal environmental Instruments in force

In this domain, two frameworks are concerned: the national framework and the international framework. National framework

The instruments approved in this framework are constitutional, legislative and regulatory The constitutional instruments

The Burkinabè Constitution of the fourth Republic approved on June 2, 1991 accords a special importance to the protection and management of the environment. It makes many provisions for this purpose.

First, the preamble, which is part and parcel of the constitution, asserts the increased consciousness of the population as far environmental issues are concerned. This awareness of the population of the need to protect the environ­ment was the result of a collective start supported by an inflexible political will.
In addition to the preamble, the protection of the environment constitutes the object of two other provisions of the Constitution. First, there is Article 14 which confers the status of national patrimony upon national resources. In other words, it is the inalienability of these natural resources, at the detriment of the local populations, which is underscored.
As for Article 29, it establishes among human fundamental rights the right to a healthy environment. This measure specifies the State’s duty towards citizens, but also towards future generations for which it is our responsibility to bequeath a natural patrimony in an acceptable condition, i.e., which does not jeopardise their chance of survival.
Article 101 of the constitution, concerned with the distribution of legislative and regulatory competencies, deals with the environment. It includes the protection of the environment in matters where the law fixes the fundamental principles.
This establishment of the constitutional value of the protection of the environment is all the more reinforced since it is the only Burkinabè constitutional measure which specifies that the protection of the environ­ment is considered as a State obligation. Legislative and regulatory instruments

Burkina Faso has at its disposal a legislation and regulations covering all the as­pects of environmental protection and promotion. In a specific way, these legal provisions apply to land, forestry, wildlife, fishery, water, agricultural and livestock systems. For example, the following measures, which directly apply to biological diversity, may be quoted:

  • Agrarian and Land Reform;

  • Environment Code;

  • Forestry Code;

  • Mining Code;

  • Water Code;

  • Signature and ratification of many international treaties, conventions and agreements concerning the management of biological diversity resources;

  • Traditional and customary regulations (traditional hunting and fishing, sacred woods, taboos).

The exhaustive list of legislative and regulatory instruments having an impact on biological diversity may be consulted in the document entitled “Élaboration d’une monographie nationale sur la diversité biologique : Étude juridique” (Development of a Country Study on Biological Diversity: Legal Study), a study conducted as part of the this monograph. Table 4 shows the quantitative situation of regulatory laws and texts, while table 5 is a caption of legal instruments according to domain of competencies.

Table 4: List of legislative and regulatory texts on the environment

Laws and texts

Quantitative situation








Table 3: Summary of legal instruments in force in Burkina Faso.

Domain of competence

Number of instruments

















Agriculture and livestock









Wastes and pollution



Inflammable products


Indirect International Framework

Following the other countries of the international community, Burkina Faso subscribed to a number of intentional commitments of which the following impact on the domain of biological diversity:

  • The Convention on wetland of international importance, particularly as Wildlife Habitat (Ramsar, 1971), intended to harness now and in the future the gradual encroachment upon wetlands by recognising their fundamental ecological functions and their economic, cultural, scientific and tourist values;

  • The Convention concerning the protection of World Cultural and Natural Patrimony (Paris, 1972) which institutes a collective system for the protection of outstanding sites of cultural and natural heritage;

  • The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna [CITES (Washington, 1973)]. It protects endangered species by controlling trade in dead or live animals through a license system;

  • The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (Bonn, 1979) which protects wildlife species migrating across international borders by facilitating international agreements;

  • The Berne Convention on the Conservation of Wildlife and their Natural Habitats;

  • The Convention on Biological Diversity aiming at the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the exploitation of genetic resources;

  • The Conven­tion Framework on Climatic Changes whose objective is to stabilise green house gas concentration in the atmosphere at a level which prevents any dangerous disruption of the climatic system by man;

  • The United Nations Convention on desertification control in countries seriously affected by drought and/or desertification, particularly in Africa; its objective is to fight against desertification and to mitigate the effects of drought.

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