A K1.5 million agreement has been signed to promote biodiversity conservation and sustainable development in the provinces of East and West New Britain.
The project, Community-based Forest and Coastal Conservation and Resource Management in Papua New Guinea, is being implemented by the Conservation Environment and Protection Authority (CEPA), with two years of funding providing by the Global Environment Facility and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
A memorandum of agreement was signed by CEPA managing director Gunther Joku, acting provincial administrator Wilson Matava and West New Britain deputy administrator Leo Brown.
United Nations resident coordinator and UNDP resident representative Roy Trivedy said the agreement promoted conservation of sustainable growth.
“This is a critical milestone for CEPA and the provinces of East and West New Britain and I commend them for joining forces towards achieving a common goal of sustainable development through conservation,” Mr Trivedy said.
“The signing of this agreement enables the Community-based Forest and Coastal Conservation and Resource Management project to go ahead.”
“Currently, this project supports the conservation initiatives of communities in more than 200,000 hectares in East and West New Britain to help in advancing the provincial government’s efforts to protect the remaining rainforests in the Baining Mountain, Nakanai and Whiteman Ranges.”
“Activities are being carried out to support landowners to make an informed decision and sustainably plan the use of their land and natural resources, and look at income earning options.
Key initiatives to be rolled out under this partnership include recognition of communities managing protected areas through series of awareness raising and community consultations if customary land owners and their communities are committed to conserve their land.
It will also include community capacity training, livelihood development and partnership strengthening.
The collaboration will also open up avenues for rural communities to bring in sustainable service delivery within protected areas of East and West New Britain, such as production of moringa oil, soap, powder as well as organic cocoa in the Baining mountains.
(Source: Papua New Guinea Post-Courier Business 07 July 2017)