Desk study on the environment in Liberia


A United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) publication.

Shelfmark: AF/LR/008(box)

UNEP’s first post-conflict study in Africa, published in 2004, is a collation of environmental background data together with recommendations for the sustainable use of Liberia’s natural resources: timber, minerals , agriculture and wildlife.

The report is also available online, Desk study on the environment in Liberia. In 2007 UNEP produced a further report UNEP Post-Conflict Capacity Building Programme in Liberia making an important contribution towards increasing national and regional stability.


Following the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in Accra in August 2003, Liberia is entering a new and promising period of peace and reconstruction. The National Transitional Government of Liberia, with support from international community and the UN peacekeeping operation UNMIL, has the responsibility of preparing democratic elections to be held in October 2005.


Environmental degradation is one of the unfortunate legacies of the 14-year period of conflicts in Liberia. There has been damage from the illegal logging of forests, mining activities, and erosion caused by the destruction of mangroves, while increased uncontrolled hunting threatens several species. The human and urban environment has suffered damage from the war,from looting,and from the huge numbers of refugees and internally displaced persons. Safe drinking water is
lacking and sanitation is inadequate.


The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) participated in the post-conflict UN needs assessment mission to Liberia. The findings of this desk study draw on key environmental information obtained from the Liberian national authorities, non-governmental organisations and other sources. Recommendations are made how the environment could be fully integrated into the coming reconstruction efforts in Liberia.


Country context

  • Geographical features
  • Social conditions
  • Economy
  • Chronology of events

Human and urban environment

  • Population displacement
  • Water and sanitation
  • Waste management
  • Energy
  • Rubber plantations
  • Manufacturing
  • Agriculture
  • Transport
  • Shipping

Natural resources

  • Forests
  • Freshwater and wetlands
  • Marine and coastal enviroment
  • Mineral resources
  • Biodiversity
  • Protected areas

Environmental governance and institutions

  • Institutional framework
  • Legal framework
  • Policy framework
  • Civil Society
  • Regional cooperation
  • International cooperation
  • Multilateral Environmental Agreements

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