CAIRO – 6 August 2018: The Ministry of Environment is preparing to offer 30 nature reserves to the right of use for fiveto 10 years, Minister of Environment Yasmine Fouad said at the sideline of at the annual meetings of the African Caucus for the World Bank (WB) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Fouad noted that the Ministry will start the offer with thenature reserves of Nabq and WadiDegla, noting that the offer will be presented for local companies at first, and that foreign firms will be included at a further stage.
The rainwatershave affected the limestone rocks along the years and formed the so called canyon,Degla, which resembles the Grand Canyon in the U.S.
This offer aims at developing the infrastructure of the reserves to create value add and encourage investments in this field, the minister said, adding that Egypt is considered to be one of the least countries in the world spending on garbage index.
She also revealed that Egypt spends $3 per citizen monthly on garbage collection and transport, compared to $7 in other countries, pointing out that amendments are being made to the Environment Law to be presented to the House of Representatives soon.
Nabq is characterized by a number of important environmental systems like coral reefs, sea and land creatures, and large dense mangrove woods. It includes the environmental systems of a desert, mountain and valleys, and animals like deer, mountain goats, hyenas, reptiles and a lot of migrating and resident birds beside invertebrates, according to the website of the Ministry of Environment.
WadiDegla extends from east to west with a length of 30 kilometer, passing through the limestone rocks that had remained in the marine environment during the Eocene Epoch in the eastern desert (60 million years).The reserve is thus rich with fossils; the height of these rocks alongside the valley is around 50 meters.
The valley has a group of animals including mammals like dears, mountain rabbits, red foxes, feather tailed rats, oviparous, barbed rats, and little tailed batsamongothers. Eighteenspecies of reptiles have been recorded.
The following is a list of the 30 natural reserves that Egypt owns:
1. Ras Mohamed Protected Area and Tyran as well as Sanafir in South Sinai Governorate.
2. Zaraniq Protected Area and El Bardwaeel Marsh in the North Sinai Governorate.
3. Coast Marshes Area in Rafah North Sinai Governorate (Ahrash Protectorate).
4. Elba Natural Protected Area in the Red Sea Governorate
5. Elomayed Natural Protected Area in Matrouh Governorate
6. Saloga, Ghazal and the Small Islands in between (First waterfall) in Aswan Governorate
7. Ashtoom El-Gamil and Tenis Island Protected Area in Port Said Governorate
8. Saint Katherine Protected Area in South Sinai
9. Wadi Al-Alaqi in Aswan Governorate
10. The Petrified Forest Area in Maadi – Cairo
11. Wadi Al-Asioutty Protected Area in Asiout Governorate
12. Wadi El-Rayan Protected Area in Fayoum Governorate
13. Quaron Lake Protected Area in El-Fayoum Governorate
14. Hassana Dome Protected Area in Giza Governorate
15. WadiSanor Cave Protected Area in BeniSueif Governorate
16. Nabq Protected Area in South Sinai Governorate
17. Abu Gallum Protected Area in South Sinai Governorate
18. Taba Protected Area in South Sinai Governorate
19. El-Brolus Protected Area in Kafr El-Sheikh Governorate
20. Nile River Islands Protected Area in Different Governorate
21. WadiDegla Protected Area in Cairo Governorate
22. Natural Siwa Protected Area in Matrouh Governorate
23. Natural White Desert Protected Area in El Wady EL Gedid
24. Wadi El Gemal – Hamata Protected Area
25. Red Sea Northern Islands
26. El Gulf El Kebeer
29. El-Wahat El-Bahreya
30. Mount Kamel Meteor Protectorate
Former Minister of Environment Khaled Fahmy said earlier that the ministry has developed a plan to sustainably develop these nature reserves, according to a statement from the ministry.
The plan will focus on supporting the environment and visitors, which will increase management development at the nature reserves and their resources.