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The Okavango River Basin

This Story Map is an updated version of an earlier one that can be accessed here

This Story Map explores the ecosystem services of the Cubango-Okavango River Basin and the threats they face. A combination of interactive maps, graphics, photos, and text are provided to examine these ecosytems from different perspectives. 

Open story map

The focus is on the active part of the basin which consists of the area drained by the Cubango, Cutato, Cuchi, Cuelei, Cuebe and Cuito rivers in Angola; the Okavango River in Namibia and Botswana; and the Okavango Delta in Botswana (Van der Waal 2009). 


The Cubango-Okavango River Basin (CORB) is located in southern Africa and covers around 690 000 sq km of which 151 406 sq km is located in Angola, 168 274 sq km in Namibia, 345 704 sq km in Botswana and 25 670 sq km in Zimbabwe (FAO 2014). The total basin population is estimated to be just under 900 000, of which almost two third live in rural areas (FAO 2014).


Estimates show that 380 000 people derive direct livelihood support from the Cubango-Okabango River Basin (Alyward 2009). The use of the basin is dominated by the harvesting of wild natural resources, such as fish, wood and grass; the use of land resources for small-scale agriculture, such as crop and livestock production; and the use of natural habitats for providing tourism services.