Caricom launches third phase of environment programme

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (CMC)— The Caribbean Community (Caricom) has launched the third phase of the Caribbean Hub sub-programme of the multilateral environment agreements project in the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) grouping.

The Guyana-based Caricom Secretariat said that the programme is funded under the European Commission-United Nations Environment Capacity building initiative.

Caricom Secretary-General Irwin LaRocque and Acting Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) Arnold Kreilhuber have signed an agreement approving continued capacity building related to Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) support for the region.

“The programme on capacity building related to MEAs in ACP countries results from a partnership between the European Commission, the Secretariat of the ACP Group of States,  the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO),” the CARICOM Secretariat said, adding that the aim is to empower key stakeholders to address environmental challenges and to reap the benefits of improved environmental management at the national and regional levels.

The Caricom Secretariat has hosted the Caribbean Hub from 2009 and throughout the first two phases of the programme, the Hub has worked to mainstream the relevant conventions on biodiversity, chemicals and waste management into institutions and national development plans by promoting an integrated and synergistic approach to environmental management.

Caricom Assistant Secretary General, Dr Douglas Slater, said the Human and Social Development Directorate of the Secretariat, as part of the sustainable development work programme, “recognises that the COVID-19 has caused delays and has thrown us off course temporarily – but notes that the potential opportunities to build the capacity of the region with current and cutting edge information remain a priority”.

The ACP MEAs Phase III aims to further enhance the mainstreaming and implementation of the biodiversity, chemicals and waste MEAs clusters with tailored awareness raising activities and the development of knowledge building and knowledge sharing tools for targeted audiences, especially decision-makers, technical officers and Convention negotiators.

The Caricom Secretariat said that a key area of focus is building enforcement and compliance processes and mechanisms within member states to enable them to fulfil commitments under the selected MEAs and to participate more effectively in the international negotiating arena.


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