GNF - Living Lakes Network

Living Lakes – The international Network


The main purpose of this international initiative is the conservation and protection of natural resources, chiefly the drinking water reservoirs of the earth. UN investigations say that today about 2.2 billion people suffer from water shortages or bad water quality.

 Living Lakes

Overview about all Lakes and Wetlands of the Living Lakes Network


Lake Tanganyika - Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Tanzania, Zambia


Background Lake Tanganyika

Lake Tanganyika is the second largest fresh water lake in the world by volume and the second deepest lake after Lake Baikal in Siberia. Its volume measures approx. 18,880 cubic kilometres and its maximum depth lies at 1,470 m. With a maximum length of 673 km and a maximum width of 72 km, Lake Tanganyika covers a surface of 32,893 sq. km.


The lake is shared among four countries namely Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Tanzania and Zambia, with RDC holding 45 % and Tanzania 41 %. The major outflow is the Lukuga River, which empties into the Congo River system. The major inflow is the Ruzizi River, entering the north of Lake Tanganyika and coming from Lake Kivu. Further inflows are the Kalambo River and the Malagarasi River, which is Tanzania´s second largest river.

Underneath a depth of 200 m, the water of Lake Tanganyika is nearly anaerobic and without upper existence, because of the missing water recirculation. In the deepest thicknesses, the water has a fossil characteristic.


Lake Tanganyika is home to 300 fish species, 95 % of them are endemic. The chilid species dominate. Fish is the most important food source for the people, living in the lake area. More than 45,000 people work in the fish industries.

 Map of Lake Tanganyika
 Type of fishing boat at Lake Tanganyika
 School children washing their hands

Project measures Lake Tanganyika

Two common projects in Burundi were successfully implemented together with the partner organization Biraturaba:


Reduction of Deforestation by Planting Trees and Introducing Improved Cooking Stoves (2013 - 2014)


Clean Drinking Water for School Children (2012 - 2013)



Partner Oganisation Lake Tanganyika


Association Biraturaba

Association Sans But Lucratif

Contact person: Emmanuel Nshimirimana

Rohero I, Avenue de l’amitié n°8

Bujumbura 6353


Phone: +257 2225 7181




The Living Lakes Network – Saving the Lakes and Wetlands of the World


Living Lakes strives for effective protection of water in the most important lake areas around the world - A world-wide future-oriented initiative! At the moment, 113 members belong to the network. Further information about each lake or wetland you find under the lists for each continent.

Our Mission

Living Lakes is an international network and partnership whose mission is to enhance the protection, restoration and rehabilitation of lakes, wetlands, other freshwater bodies of the world and their catchment areas.

Our Vision

All lakes, wetlands and freshwater bodies of the world should be healthy ecosystems and where they are used by human kind that use should be sustainable and not damaging to the environment.


  • Conserving the biodiversity and the preservation of fresh water resources, lakes and wetland ecosystems.
  • Restoring altered and disappearing wetlands and lake ecosystems. 
  • Improving the quality of life for the local communities (Agenda 21).
  • Building a commitment towards a sustainable use and development of these ecosystems (for example, through agriculture, fishery, tourism, settlement and water use).
  • Promoting the use of applied sciences and technologies towards the conservation of these ecosystems.
  • Supporting educational programs and cooperation with local communities towards the conservation of the biodiversity of these ecosystems.
  • Disseminating information relevant to these ecosystems.
 Sailing Boats at the Broads in England
 Riverine vegetation in Sri Lanka
 Lake Hovsgol in Mongolia


Distinction as “Official Project of the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005 – 2014”

In November 2013, the project “Living Lakes” has received for the fifth time the distinction as official UN Decade Project for the year 2014. The first distinction occured for the years 2006 and 2007.

 Logo UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development 2005 – 2014