The Bahamas’ goals to address land degradation, food security and climate resilience challenges have gained more footing as Minister of the Environment and Natural Resources the Hon. Vaughn P. Miller attended the Partnership Initiative for Sustainable Land Management in Caribbean SIDS (PILSM). This is the first time that The Bahamas participated in this initiative, backed by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Sustainable Development Division. 

Minister Miller serves as the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and Land Degradation (UNCCD) Political Focal Point for The Commonwealth of The Bahamas. Danielle Hanek, Bahamas Forestry Unit Acting Director, serves as the Technical Focal Point. They travelled to Grenada to participate in the meeting and witness the establishment of PISLM as an intergovernmental organization (IGO) during a signing ceremony of the three sponsor countries: Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada and St Lucia.

“We currently have a Global Environment Facility (GEF) full-size project entitled” ‘Integrated Landscape Management for Addressing Land Degradation, Food Security and Climate Resilience Challenges in The Bahamas,” Minister Miller told the meeting. 

“PISLM is currently collaborating with The Bahamas government under Component 1 entitled: ‘Strengthening the enabling environment for achievement of land degradation neutrality through improved policy and governance’. PISLM is leading the development of an ILM strategy and intersectoral operational framework for ILM and the Land Degradation Neutrality, thus assisting The Bahamas on the alignment of the National Action Programme (NAP) for the ILM following the UNCCD protocols.”

“Our technical committee is in the final review stages of the NAP before I bring it forth to Cabinet for the full endorsement by our government,” Minister Miller said. 

The PISLM consists of a series of commitments and action-oriented coalitions focused on deliverables, intended to translate political commitment into action. The PISLM serves as a mechanism to facilitate exchange of experiences and good land management practices between participating countries. The initiative serves as a mechanism for stimulating the replication of various approaches, tools and methodologies throughout the region. 

Prime Minister of Grenada the Hon. Dicken Mitchell welcomed his Caribbean counterparts to the event, along with the Minister of Economic Development, Planning, Agriculture and Lands, Forestry, Marine Resources and Cooperatives of Grenada the Hon. Minister Lennox J. Andrews. This meeting marked the sixth session of the PISLM.

Source: Felicity Darville

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