US$2.4M project for GSDS starts – Dept of the Environment

January 12, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgHead of the Department of the Environment (DoE), Ndibi Schwiers on Monday at her Department’s annual sector review, announced that a US$2.4 million “Strengthening Technical Capacities to mainstream and monitor the RIO Convention through policy coordination” project 2016-2020, is being undertaken in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).To this end, several workshops and awareness sessions have been successfully conducted resulting in the participation of more than 400 persons from Government agencies and the Private Sector.Minister of State, Joseph HarmonThe GSDS will be the country’s third national development strategy and is intended to guide national development in all sectors. The DoE, Schwiers noted, is working with UN Environment, which is Guyana’s partner in developing the strategy.Providing an update on the progress of the GSDS’ development, the Department Head noted that several rounds of consultations have been hosted across the country, and the Department has been successful in starting what have been dubbed “green conversations”, which are intended to fill the awareness gap.The Coordination Desk of the DoE is working along with the Communities and Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministries to create a consultation plan. The next steps, according to Schwiers, will be research and drafting of the document.To do this, the Department has developed seven thematic groups which coincide with the seven thematic areas of the GSDS. The University of Guyana is also playing an instrumental role in this process as its representatives are tasked with identifying seven thematic experts, who will assist the thematic groups in drafting various thematic elements of the GSDS.Head of the Department of the Environment, Ndibi SchwiersSchwiers informed that a meeting of the Advisory Group of the GSDS, which consists of the Chairs and Co-chairs of the seven thematic areas, is scheduled for January 25, 2018, to facilitate further discussions.The DoE will also be focusing this year on an in-depth programme review of the Environment Protection Agency (EPA), harmonising environmental management countrywide and development of its strategic plan.The job of the Department, Schwiers assured, is not to usurp the functions of the four agencies under its purview, which are the National Parks Commission, the Protected Areas Commission, the EPA and the Guyana Wildlife Conservation and Management Commission, but to support them.In this vein, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon urged Heads of the respective agencies to focus on their objectives for 2018 and how they could adequately execute them placing greater emphasis on inter-agency support and collaboration.They were urged to examine those “factors that impact on the work we have to do as a sector… I believe we are more in the regulatory framework than any other department because whatever happens in the environment if something goes wrong, we are the ones that people will look to,” the Minister is quoted as saying.Responding to the challenges faced by the various agencies, Minister Harmon assured that in those areas that require it, an immediate intervention would be made.Minister Harmon urged them to bring matters to his attention as they arise to ensure timely resolution which would allow for the efficient functioning of all the entities.last_img

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