Conservation Measures our Love for Biodiversity & Planet
'Biodiversity is life. Conservation is safeguarding this biodiversity and the integrity of the ecosystem services it provides which support global needs. Conservation is a core to all Long Runners. They support the sustainable use of natural resources that safeguards the integrity of the planet in their area. Activities in this dimension address issues of biodiversity and ecosystem services as well as management of energy, water and waste, land planning and carbon impact reduction.'
Conservation lies at the heart of what we do. The land on which our infrastructure is built continues to keep an ancient contract with its custodians, who include us. In order to fulfil our end of the bargain, we must prioritize our commitment to all conservation efforts in the NamibRand Nature Reserve. Through the effort and energy put into educating our team, guests, and partners about our unique ecosystem, we have developed various engaging ways to inform them of the fragility and sensitivity of the unique biodiversity and habitat that we occupy. By aligning our footprint for minimal operational impact and sharing our thoughts and ideas through awareness campaigns, we’ve succeeded in securing a well-balanced environmentally sustainable management plan. Testament to this, Wolwedans was the first tourism lodge in the history of the Eco Awards Namibia program to be certified with the maximum five flower accreditation on a first attempt.
We invest in wildlife conservation projects that make a difference; we invest in the people who enrich guests’ experiences and in the communities and individual entrepreneurs just outside the wild areas to which we invite visitors. If not for our enduring purpose, we could well be just another safari company. Instead, we are the engineers of the “Wolwedans Way,” and we aspire to making a real difference and inspire a new way (of doing business).
We have spent over NAD 7 million on solar panels through the Wolwedans Foundation to further reduce our carbon footprint.
We measure our conservation efforts to address energy and water usage, waste reduction and recycling. We have expanded our base villages technical capabilities to include a water pump room that moves water through a system of water pipes and holding tanks to all the sites. We've invested in upgrades to our solar facilities and created welder, electrician, carpenter and vehicle repair and refuelling workshops too. We have a battery room that keeps us operating long after the sun has set. It certainly takes a village, as they say and our experience is no different. We support a local education facility, the Namib Desert Environmental Education Trust (NaDeet), based in the NamibRand Nature Reserve (NRNR), which promotes conservation by developing environmental awareness among young school-age children, proactively. NaDeet recently received
Substantial Investments into renewable energy: Our policies on energy management are two-fold, (1) minnimising the total amount of energy Wolwedans' operations consume and (2) moving away from all non-renewables towards renewable energy sources. Energy generation and usage have a great influence on our environment. Our Desert Academy, based at the Wolwedans Village enjoys solar powered hot water and solar powered energy, 100%. The NICE academy also enjoys solar powered energy since 2017.
Organic Gardens: 50% of all greens consumed at the Wolwedans Village by guests, trainees and staff are grown at our Base Village. This significantly reduces the carbon footprint. Almost 100% of all salad and herbs are harvested from our organic garden at the NICE facility in the city of Windhoek.
Professional Water Management: Every litre of water is measured and accounted for. Water from the village septic tank is extracted and filtered so that in can be reused as grey water for a variety of purposes depending on its quality.
Low Impact Building Style: Our buildings and landscaping are designed to safeguard the natural environment and to protect the sensitive environment of the Namib.
Complete Recycling: No waste remains. By eliminating waste, reducing our carbon footprint through careful use of resources, investing in renewable solar energy, practicing water conservation and building low impact structures, we see long-term economic benefits by reducing costs and increasing resilience.