St. Kitts-Nevis launch projects on biodiversity and climate change
St. Kitts-Nevis will on Wednesday launch two multi-million dollar projects on conserving biodiversity and climate change adaptation, according to an official statement issued here.
It said the project on “Conserving Biodiversity and Reducing Habitat Degradation in Protected Areas and their Areas of Influence” is expected to improve ecosystem representation in the protected areas system and establish or strengthen protected management operations at key sites.
“It will also strengthen institutional, policy, legal or regulatory information and financing frameworks at the protected area system level.”
The US$3.3 million four-year project will be implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and funded by the Global Environment Fund (GEF).
The statement said that the investment by GEF is expected to pave the way for the legal establishment of five new protected areas.
“The project will assist the government of St. Kitts and Nevis in establishing, staffing and equipping a Protected Area Agency, the first government unit dedicated to protected areas in the country’s history,” said Randolph Edmeade, Director of the Department of Physical Planning and Environment and National Project Director .
“This Agency will oversee and manage the overall protected area system as well as the specific protected area units.”
The second project is the national re-launch of the “Climate Change Adaptation and Sustainable Land Management Project in the Eastern Caribbean” which is a European Union (EU) Global Climate Change Alliance (GCCA) funded project implemented by the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Commission across the nine OECS member states.
“This project aims to improve the region’s natural resource base resilience to the impacts of climate change through effective and sustainable land management (SLM) frameworks and practices and specific physical adaptation pilot projects in relevant areas and sectors.”
The statement said funding is estimated at EC$38 million (One EC dollar =US$0.37 cents) over a period of four years. Both projects will conclude in 2018.
“St. Kitts and Nevis is expected to reap significant benefits from this project across several sectors,” said Eavin Parry, Environmental Scientist in the Department of Physical Planning and Environment.
“For example, the government has already procured a range of land management related hardware, software and equipment that will be used to improve SLM practices. In addition, the project proposes to enhance SLM institutional and regulatory frameworks at the national level which would include national The statement said successful implementation of both projects will help to transform the environmental management landscape in St. Kitts and Nevis while assisting the Federation in meeting its international obligations under the multilateral environmental agreements related to biodiversity conservation, climate change and land management.