6,031,808 (2009 estimate)
56,785 sq km
Population growth rate
2.754% (2009 est.)
GDP per capita (U.S.$)
$900 (2009 est.)
GDP by economic sector
Industry: 25.4%Services: 27.2%
Phosphates, limestone, marble, arable land
In Togo, Naturvernforbundet is working to promote the use of improved energy solutions for households. The work takes place in cooperation with local communities in various parts of the country. Experience gained at this level is used in political advocacy work. This will ensure solutions that people can afford and that have the least possible negative impact on the environment and people's livelihoods and health. There is an emphasis on improvements related to the production and use of charcoal.
Naturvernforbundet collaborates with Jeunes Volontaires pour l'Environnement / Young Volunteers for the Environment (JVE / YVE), an organization working for sustainable development and social justice and for young people to engage in this work. They have representations in more than 20 African countries, providing opportunities to disseminate the lessons learned from Togo and exchanges between all.
More than 80% of the energy use of the people of Togo is covered by wood and charcoal, and the consumption of coal is growing. In the years between 2000 and 2005, Togo has among the world's highest deforestation rates, and since 1990 over 40% of the forest has been lost. This is mainly due to logging and charcoal production. At least 15,000 hectares are cleared annually, while only 1,000 hectares will be replanted. According to forecasts given in the national environmental action plan, the country will have lost all its forests by 2020 if the current trend continues. Use of inefficient stoves is by far most common.
Solutions to address these vital issues exist, but so far they are known by a limited number, and the capacity to act effectively is deficient. Until now the political efforts have also been very limited. But now the government has prepared a program for the promotion of renewable energy. To reduce deforestation the government foresees efforts in three stages: In the first stage, the focus is on tree planting, increased use of improved stoves (for wood and charcoal) and more efficient production of charcoal. Here our current work is most relevant. In the second stage, emphasis is placed on the transition to the use of natural gas and electricity. The third stage focuses on the promotion of solar and wind energy, biogas and biofuels. JVE participated in the preparation of this program.
A national agency for environmental management and a national program for decentralized actions in environmental management were launched in 2011. The program includes capacity building for implementation of specific environmental protection measures that locals have identified themselves. In general, the program shall strengthen decentralization and processes with local involvement.