‘Environmental preservation and biodiversity conservation’ – Key areas of focus says Dr Protz
International Biodiversity Consultant, Dr. Maria Protz says ‘more and more environmental preservation and biodiversity conservation are becoming key areas of focus all over the world, and as small island states, there is an urgent need for OECS countries to intensify their efforts in fostering good environmental practices’.
Dr. Protz made this declaration while addressing the close of two-day seminar on protected areas for media practitioners in Dominica which she described as timely and of great relevance to the island, which has contributed to rating the Caribbean as one of the top 5 hot spots in the world.
The first media seminar was held in St Lucia from January 10th to 11th, with the second being held in Dominica from January 13th to 14th.
Four similar seminars will be held in the other independent OECS States.
The OECS anticipates that the seminars will not only help to strengthen and increase much needed media coverage on protected areas and biodiversity conservation in the region, but will also help to create a cadre of journalists in the OECS, who are equipped with a sound knowledge of evidence based coverage of this sensitive, yet significant area.
Dr. Protz says the response from the participants was very encouraging.
One of the major outcomes from the seminar was a pledge which was taken by the journalists to produce at least 10 features on biodiversity within the next decade.
The seminar forms part of an OPPAAL project, which is a five year development project being executed by the OECS Secretariat through its Environment and Sustainable Development Unit (ESDU), in partnership with the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development which is acting as an implementing agency of the GEF, and the Government of France.