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Improper land managment hinders sustainable development of sub-region – Health Minister

Improper land managment hinders sustainable development of sub-region – Health Minister

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Improper land management has been identified as a major constraint to sustainable development in Organization of the Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) member nations.{{more}}

Minister of Health and the Environment, Clayton Burgin made the disclosure on Wednesday at the Prime Minister’s residence in Montrose.

“Progress in this regard (land management) has been slow, disjointed and incomplete, and when given our often weak institutional capacity and resource frameworks, we find ourselves not having the capacity to meet national and global sustainable development targets,” Burgin said.

Burgin was addressing the opening ceremony of the 16th meeting of the OECS Ministers of the Environment Policy Committee.

He said St Vincent and the Grenadines has put measures in place and have identified priorities to develop the country’s resilience to the impacts of climate change.

These measures include the review and expansion of the National Climate Change Adaptation Policy, training and investments for improved data capture, collection, and management, for climate change impact assessment purposes, training and investments for understanding and interpreting climate impact models and assessments and national level-specific infrastructure investments.

He, however, told the overseas delegates that there is a need for the sub-regional grouping to establish and reinforce its land management systems at both national and regional levels.

Burgin explained that this can be done by providing an appropriate legal and institutional framework geared towards issues of climate change.

“I suggest to you that in the OECS we should start to see improvements in our land management as a means of building our resilience.

He said there was a specific need to establish or reinforce the nation’s land management systems at both the regional and national levels, by providing appropriate climate change oriented legal and institutional frameworks.

The OECS, he further said, needs “to build the human and technical capacity required to effectively operate and manage the required technical tools for the collection, storage, co-ordination, analysis and display of data in support of the decision making process related to sustainable land management policies and strategies and conduct harmonised awareness campaigns at the regional and national levels that will highlight the risks, threats and opportunities arising from climate change and help to build effective and lasting partnerships between the Governments, civil society and the private sector.”

The 16th meeting of the OECS Ministers of the Environment Policy Committee was held on Thursday at the NIS training room and focused primarily on climate change issues, specifically how improved land management can help reduce impacts to climate change and climate variability.

During this discussion, the ministers were in debates on how improved land management can help reduce impacts of climate change and climate variability.

The OECS Ministers of Environment Policy Committee was formed in 1997 and meets annually to receive reports from the Environment and Sustainable Development Unit of the OECS Secretariat and to review and approve the Unit’s work plan. (AA)

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