South Africa's Cape conservation initiative plans to expand

15 June, 2007

South Africa's Biodiversity and Wine Initiative plans to put 50,000ha aside for conservation by the end of 2010.

BWI has already earmarked 50,000ha for conservation in the Cape during the past two-and-a-half years. The area that is set aside cannot be cultivated for agricultural use.

BWI was set up in 2004 as South Africa's botanical region, the Cape - where nearly 95 per cent of wine growing takes place, came under increased threat from agriculture, urban development and invasive alien species.

Inge Kotzť, BWI project coordinator, said:

"We are enormously encouraged by the enthusiastic backing from the wine industry. Growers are farming in ways that are more in harmony with nature and the environment." BWI is co-hosting†a conference, Vinecology: understanding the management of biodiversity within vineyard landscapes, at†the end of June.

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