GPS technology maps land rights for Africa's 'forest people'. In the lush rainforests of Africa's Congo Basin, hundreds of thousands of indigenous people live as hunter gatherers, depending on the forest's natural resources for their survival. Yet most have no legal rights to the land that has been their home for millennia. But GPS technology is helping indigenous people map the land they call home and produce documents that can help preserve their access to the forest that is their lifeblood. Rainforest Foundation UK (RFUK) is one group that organizes "community mapping" projects in central Africa's Congo Basin. Spread across six countries, and covering more than 1.3 million square miles - an area twice the size of Alaska - the Congo Basin includes an expanse of rainforest second only in size to the Amazon.
It is also home to 40 million people, says Georges Thierry Handja, of RFUK. They include up to half a million hunter-gatherer people, often referred to as "pygmies," whose lives are intimately linked to the rainforest.
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