National Conservation Trust Fund of Jamaica - Newsletter #1
Source: National Conservation Trust Fund of Jamaica (NCTFJ), December 2019
On June 5th, 2019, World Environment Day, National Conservation Trust Fund of Jamaica (NCTFJ) was officially launched at the Terra Nova Suite Hotel in Kingston Jamaica. The event was greatly supported by all stakeholders with direct responsibility of Jamaica’s protected areas. The NCTFJ and the launch received pivotal support from The Nature Conservancy through the USAID funded Caribbean Marine Biodiversity Project, the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund (CBF), United Nations Development.
Programme, Planning Institute of Jamaica through the PPCR-Climate Data Project and The Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation.
The Hon. Daryl Vaz, Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation through the main address, pledged his continued support to the Trust Fund. The launch was a pivotal moment for the NCTFJ as the Trust Fund also signed a Partnership Agreement with the CBF.
Under the Partnership Agreement, the NCTFJ will receive payments from the Jamaica sub- account in the CBF Endowment to be used for grant-making towards Biodiversity Conservation in Jamaica. Currently, the NCTFJ’s sub-account has a value of US$6,677,492.32. The NCTFJ will mobilise financial resources for funding projects and programmes that support conservation efforts. Funds through NCTFJ will complement existing funding sources for protected areas. In December 2019, the NCTFJ received its first tranche of funding from the CBF under the Partnership Agreement. The NCTFJ expects to commence awarding grants to eligible entities by early 2020.
GREEN EXPO - A BETTER ENVIRONMENT = A BETTER LIFE: DO THE RIGHT THING!
Jamaica Conservation and Development Trust (JCDT) in collaboration with the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) and the Environmental Foundation of Jamaica.
(EFJ) staged a Green-Expo at the National Arena in St. Andrew from June 7th to June 9th, 2019. The environmental exposition was aimed at increasing the awareness, knowledge and implementation of environmentally sustainable practices by the Jamaican public.
NCTFJ partnered with the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation (MEGJC) and was allocated booth space at Green-Expo to promote the significance of protecting natural areas to address climate change and ensure long-term provision of eco-services. The NCTFJ’s staff conducted interactive activities with different school groups and received great participation in the quiz held throughout the second day of the Expo.
The event was widely supported by exhibitors promoting the use and availability of environmentally and climate friendly products and services; provision of examples of environmental best practices for homes and industries; and highlight of sustainable development work of government agencies and NGOs.
The funds raised from Green-Expo will be used to support the management and conservation of the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park and World Heritage Site.
CCI-CBF WEEK 2019 IN ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA
During the meeting, participants discussed the progress achieved by the region towards the two CCI goals: the protection and effective management of 20% of the marine and coastal environment (Goal 1) and the sustainable financing needed for this (Goal 2). The Caribbean
Representatives from the NCTFJ and the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation (MEGJC) attended the annual Caribbean Challenge Initiative (CCI) and the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund (CBF) meeting, known as the CCI-CBF Week, that took place in Bolans, Antigua from June 16th to 20th, 2019 at the Jolly Beach Hotel. The meeting brought together CCI and CBF members, National Conservation Trust Funds (NCTFs) from the Caribbean, partners, donors, and observers.
Sustainable Finance Architecture, the platform composed by the CBF and the NCTFs, is the core of Goal 2. Five countries were recognised by the CCI Steering Committee as early achievers for CCI Goal 1 (protecting and effectively managing 20% of the coastal and marine areas by 2020). The early achievers include Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, St. Kitts and Nevis, Haiti and Dominican Republic.
Other highlights of the meeting:
- The German Government, announced an increase in their level of contribution to the CBF endowment by an additional 25.5 million
- The German Government also announced support for a new facility under the CBF that will complement the challenges of the circular economy, plastic waste management and wastewater
- The French Development Agency announced support of up to US$3 million to support the recently established trust fund in
- The Nature Conservancy announced that US$500,000 was transferred to the Jamaica sub-account.
- Signature of the Partnership Agreement between the CBF and the Grenada Sustainable Development Trust
WORKSHOP ON DATA MANAGEMENT FOR REPORTING UNDER THE CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY
NCTFJ participated in the Data Management workshop held on August 14th 2019 at the Spanish Court Hotel in Kingston, Jamaica. Rich discussions examined the need for technical support to eligible parties to produce the Sixth National Report (6NR) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). Technical support to GEF-eligible Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) was necessary to develop a high quality, gender- responsive and data-driven 6NR to improve national decision-making processes for the implementation of National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan.
Mr. Lijie Cai from the United Nations Development Programme discussed the challenges and improvements local stakeholders should make in producing the 6NR and the reports to follow. He highlighted a number of key areas that various sectors should work on – monitoring and evaluation; using indicators when conducting progress assessments; and creating a national data/information system for national data access. Suggestions were made based on the work done by other countries in hopes that this helps to improve the future reporting for Jamaica.
INTERNATIONAL COASTAL CLEAN-UP DAY 2019
On September 21st 2019, the NCTFJ staff and volunteers joined the Urban Development Corporation at Barmouth Beach, one of the 190 sites that had a clean-up that day. There were over 10, 000 volunteers island wide. NCTFJ team collected a total of 50 kg of garbage. International Coastal Clean-up day is an activity for building environmental awareness and gathering of data by volunteers on the types and quantities of waste collected from our beaches. The data is collected from site coordinators and tabulated by Jamaica Environment Trust to feed into an international report used by the Ocean Conservancy. This is utilised for international lobbying efforts aimed at improving waste management practices globally, thereby reducing the impacts of marine debris on coastal ecosystems.
LAUNCH: ORACABESSA DIVE SHOP
The Oracabessa Bay Fish Sanctuary in St Mary, managed by Oracabessa Foundation has experienced a 1700% increase in fish biomass within just a few years, which was possible through direct partnership with the Oracabessa Fishermen Association. Additionally, through their Coral Rehabilitation Programme, over 15,000 corals were replanted within the sanctuary and coral nurseries established.
Efficient management of the sanctuary requires sustained financing to support its activities. In a response to the need for long-term results, a sustainable mechanism was identified – a Dive Shop. The dive shop is a social enterprise, from which its profits will continue to support various sanctuary operations and ultimately build environmental resilience through marine conservation initiatives. The Oracabessa foundation received J$15 million from the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) that supported the initiative. The Manager of the NCTFJ represented the Trust Fund at the launch and expressed full support of the initiative that will generate revenue to support the management of the Oracabessa Bay Fish Sanctuary.
GREEN CLIMATE FUND KNOWLEDGE FORUM
The Green Climate Fund (GCF) is an international fund which aims to address issues related to climate change in developing countries. The focal point of the GCF in Jamaica, Ms. Una May Gordon, invited Civil Service Organizations (CSOs) to attend a Knowledge Forum on November 13th 2019. Through the Knowledge Forum, the GCF aimed to increase knowledge
of available financing for climate action, enhance understanding of Jamaica’s Country programme for engagement with the GCF and discussed elements of the proposed regional CSO readiness initiative. Additionally, the forum provided an opportunity for CSOs to share experiences and lessons learned in mobilizing climate finance to better understand CSO needs and how to engage them in future GCF country programming.
At the workshop, the CSOs were introduced to the avenue in which funding can be accessed through the Green Climate Fund. Additionally, the CSOs participated in a stocktake on adaptation initiatives. In this stocktake session, CSOs were able to share with the GCF their experiences and level of knowledge on predefined topics. This session provided information that will be used to guide NCTFJ’s engagements with Protected Areas Managers. Under the Readiness Project, there is an anticipated partnership between Jamaica and Canary to support CSOs in the region. The 2-year project aims to build capacity of CSOs in knowledge skills and to improve access to climate financing through development of proposal writing skills. The NCTFJ anticipates potential coordination with various CSOs in developing proposals for accessing funds to support actions that will build resilience through effective protected areas management.