Many new road and rail corridors’ that are planned to criss-cross Africa in the name of economic development could destroy the continent’s savannahs and equatorial forests, say scientists in a new study published in the journal Current Biology.

Transport routes could signal ruin for Africa's flora and fauna.

Transport routes could signal ruin for Africa’s flora and fauna. Image by Jeremy T. Hetzel / CC BY 2.0

The researchers believe that if the 33 giant transport routes are built, some of which will be 3000km-long, the African interior will be opened up to illegal mining and logging, as well as to large scale immigration, causing irreparable damage. The scientists warn that “Africa is changing faster than any continent has ever changed in human history.” Read more: