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Welcome to the EPSMO Project

TDA fieldworkIn 1994, the three riparian countries of the Okavango River Basin – Angola, Botswana and Namibia -- agreed to plan for collaborative management of the natural resources of the Okavango, forming the Permanent Okavango River Basin Water Commission (OKACOM). In 2003, through the Global Environment Facility, OKACOM launched the Environmental Protection and Sustainable Management of the Okavango River Basin (EPSMO) Project, fulfilling the promise to create a base of reliable information to be used in the Commission’s decision making.

The Okavango River Basin is unusual in that its waters and shores are relatively pristine, protected for many years by low human populations and, in its upper reaches, by a long war in Angola.  Experience throughout the world has shown that remedial action is invariably more costly than wise management.

OKACOM designed the EPSMO Project to evaluate the condition of the river basin, to identify possible threats posed by increasing demands on the benefits of the river system and to develop a program of policy, legal and institutional reforms – a Strategic Action Plan (SAP)-- to meet and manage these demands. 

In accordance with GEF methodology, development of the SAP will be informed by a Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA), a scientific and technical fact-finding analysis that seeks to identify the causal chains and root causes of problems affecting (or with the potential to affect) the integrity of the Okavango River Basin.

The long-term objective of the EPSMO Project is to achieve global environmental benefits through concerted management of the naturally integrated land and water resources of the Okavango River Basin.

Project Area Map

View Okavango River Basin in a larger map

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